Dead Blonde Walking
By Joel Jenkins
A new book by Joel Jenkins. By now that should be all that needs to be said. It is all I need to read it. What is surprising is the main character is Monica Killingsworth, a professional Hitman. She appeared in one of Joel’s Gantlet Brothers books as the one who was responsible for killing one of the brothers. She is not a nice person, in fact, you will wish that she has no clue you are on the planet. If she has a contract on you, you are dead. This book is a collection of short stories about her leading up to the main story that bears the title. While reading the stories, you start to almost like her. Luckily the other characters remind you that she would kill you, if she is paid to do so.
If she is asked to kill you, best thing for you to hope for is that she decides to see if someone will pay her more to not kill you. Best to hope that she dislikes whoever wants you dead enough for her to consider other offers.
Here is a good piece of advice when reading a Joel Jenkins book. If he gives a character a name, remember it, write it down. If the character is given a first and last name with some background information, expect to read that character again. Characters from Joel’s other series can and will make an appearance in the story. Also characters from his friends’ books.
It is very rare that you find someone like Monica as the main character. Even though the characters that she is fighting against are mostly other Hitmen. They are people that she has worked with in the past or someone she knows. In this case, money talks, the more money, the louder the voice. If she says she won’t kill you, listen to the words. She might say, “I won’t kill you here in your home.” If you step outside, you are fair game.
As I mentioned earlier, a minor character may become a more important one down the road in another story or book. I contacted Joel and he said some characters want more time on the page. I’m glad he listens to his characters. It wouldn’t surprise me if Joel has background on every character he uses, even if they only appear for a sentence or are killed. Comic Book fans have a saying, “Don’t believe a villain is dead, unless you see the body and even then don’t believe it.” How many times has The Joker been killed?
Best thing I can say is, “If Joel Jenkins name is on the book, or if he has a short story in it, buy it.” I have enjoyed every book of his I’ve read and hope to read many more.