A Lesson in Violence

Written by Jordan Harper

Review written by John Parker

John Parker is a Graduate-qualified English/Spanish Teacher, owner and director of CHAT ENGLISH, an English Language Centre in Avilés on the north coast of Spain . A voracious reader, he has particularly loved horror fiction for many years.


A Lesson in Violence
Simon & Schuster
RRP: £8.99
Released: Aug 24 2017
HBK

Set in California, this is the story of Polly and Nate. It’s a father-daughter story.

Nate has just been released from prison and they are about to be reunited (much to Polly’s surprise). That might sound mighty fine  except  that Crazy Craig Hollington, president of a prison gang known as Aryan Steel has issued a death warrant on Nate along with his ex-wife Avis and his 11-year-old daughter Polly, for reasons  unspecified at the start of the novel. This warrant is passed to Aryan Steel’s followers on the outside.  This means that Nate and his family have little time left on this earth unless Nate can do something about it.  And so begins a road trip that looks like a desperate dash for freedom. A trip that will change both our protagonists’ lives forever.  

And that is all I am prepared to reveal. Rest assured though that this road trip, full of violence, deceit, robbery and the very real threat of death is a journey that is worth your while. Jordan Harper’s prose is lean and mean. He doesn’t waste a word in this non-stop thriller. Harper has experience in writing for TV and this is reflected in his prose. Nothing goes to waste. Nothing is filler.

We grow to know the main characters and to care for them. The relationship between Polly and Nate is real enough, at least in the terms of a fast-paced, high-octane novel.  There are moments of unpleasant violence but these are countered by the scenes of bonding between the father and daughter. I was gasping for breath as the novel reached its end. It’s a brilliant debut and I will be there for his next publication.      



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