Thursday, January 21, 2016

Down The Darkest Street (Pete Fernandez) by Alex Segura

I commented before the first book by Alex Segura reminded me a lot of early George Pelecanos. With this book he finds his own voice and style. It is easy to read, engaging and well-paced.
Pete Fernandez struggles with an alcohol addiction and his ex-wife after the first novel. Now he tries to find purpose by trying to find a missing girl. He ends up involved with the FBI's hunt for a serial killer.
I don't like serial killer books much, but if done well it can work in a PI novel. I tried it myself in GUILT even. Alex manages the trick, even though he uses some of the tropes (switching to serial killer POV, then to victim POV, the FBI involvement) that I have grown tired of.
What makes this book work is the fact Pete Fernandez is such a complex character, a real anti-hero and the excellent prose.
I just loved reading the book, couldn't put it away... That is just the most important praise I can think of really. That's what a good book should be about. I wanted to know how Fernandez manages to overcome his struggle against depression, his feelings for his wife... I felt involved.
I think the story would make a pretty good movie as well, that's what makes it unique as a PI book I guess. The PI story is interwoven so well with the more commercial serial killer story it will be a treat to the larger audience as well as the fans of true hardboiled fiction.
I was lucky enough to get the review copy, you will have to wait until April but can pre-order the book here.

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