Review: Piggyback by Tom Pitts

When mid-level criminal enforcer Jimmy is contacted by dealer Paul about a lost load of marijuana with a piggybacked load of coke, despite his reservations about getting involved, he sees an opportunity to make a nice financial gain. Turns out that the girls Paul used as mules have ripped him off. The real problem is that the load belonged to a bad-assed gangster called Jose who will kill Paul and probably Jimmy if the load isn’t returned sharpish. So Jimmy and Paul go for a ride to get the drugs back, which leads to betrayal and a whole load of carnage.

This is the first thing I’ve read by Tom Pitts but it certainly won’t be the last. It’s a fast-paced, exciting ride into the darkness. Tightly written, lean as hell, moves like a bullet train, perfect for a plane or train journey or a lazy afternoon. The characters are an assorted collection of scumbags who are pretty much an unsympathetic bunch, so when they suffer their mostly unpleasant fates you don’t feel much for them, but sometimes when you are dealing with noir that’s pretty much what you are going to get. It doesn’t stop it from being a wild couple of hours worth of reading though. Highly recommended.

Pitts is a definite talent, and one I’ll be watching out for in future.

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