REVIEW OF HILL COUNTRY RAGE
by Patrick Kelly
In this sequel to HILL COUNTRY GREED, Joe Robbins is still separated from his wife, Rose, and is willing to do anything to reunite with her and their two daughters. Meanwhile, he’s been offered a job as CFO for a company run by Sam Monroe (a larger-than-life cowboy type) who has big plans (and a big payday for Robbins, assuming all goes well), which largely depend upon landing Kenji Tanaka, a big-shot Japanese businessman, as an investor.
However, when Neil Blaney, Robbins’ best friend (and a character from the first book) smells something wrong with Tanaka, then ends up murdered (in a way made to look like an accident), Robbins starts to rethink his commitment to Monroe.
What follows is a story that pulls the reader into the world of Austin big business and international intrigue. The book is compulsively readable. Robbins is a flawed, but likeable, protagonist who launches a personal quest to avenge Neil’s death by finding his killer. But, to his dismay, so many people (including those he’d usually trust) seem to want him to leave it be.
The book is not only a tense and fast-paced read, but Robbins is a three-dimensional character. In reading both books, it’s my impression that Robbins is a man simply looking for love, good friends and the good life. Without revealing spoilers, I’ll only say that Robbins’ continued quest to restore his former family life (a task made harder by Rose’s dating a new man) may be part of the good life he seeks. Or not. For there’s yet another woman in Robbins’ life. Leaving me to wonder if Robbins really knows what he wants or has defined what he means by “the good life”. This question adds a dimension to his character that holds promise for future storylines.
I highly recommend the book.