Revenge is a dish of individual taste…
Rampage by Justin Scott
My thanks go out to all my contacts at Pegasus Books for my copy of this novel! Thank you so much!
Brothers Chris and Tony Taglione saw their father, Mike Taglione crushed under a cement truck when he refused to knuckle under to the demands of the Mafia. Mafia representative Joey Rendini was a racketeer, demanding payment to keep the trucks that supplied building materials to the site of Tagione Concrete and Construction’s latest building site running. Mike Taglione said no, and was killed.
Now his sons want revenge, but they have different paths to walk. Chris now uses the last name Taggart. He still runs the company and is looking for ways to bypass the Mafia controlled rackets and banks. He becomes a Commissioner on the President’s Commission on Organized Crime. Meanwhile, he pays the Mafia their blood money.
Tony Taglione is against paying the Mafia at all. He points out that payment didn’t prevent the Mafia from killing their father. He also tells Chris the more you pay the Mafia the more they will demand. He wants to go to war…
The book starts out with a cliché. The protection racket scenario is about as old as it gets. And I know, I know; it is still a big part of organized crime. But something a bit more original, even to shake up the threat to say, getting the company’s business license revoked would have worked quite well. It is still a “pay up or else” deal.
The battle being fought on two fronts is not bad. The brothers obviously are going to butt heads and perhaps even work against each other. But Scott deals with those details with a grace I would have doubted from the way the book started out. Not that there aren’t more clichés in the book, but they are handled in a way to make better use of the art.
I am on the fence with this book. I did not find it breathtaking and hard to put down. I also did not find it boring and difficult to finish. It is neither a good read nor a bad read.
But I think I am probably in the minority. People are either going to love this book with its insight into the world of Organized Crime or hate it for being painfully predictable at times. Being on the fence, I give the book three stars.
Quoth the Raven…