John Jacob Ford’s morning began at 3:03 with a call from Paul Geezler, Advisor to the Division Chief, Europe, for HOSCO International.
Maybe ‘epic’ is the right word for this. With 1000 pages spanning continents, characters, genres and different kinds of media, it certainly aims high. It’s a shame about the sloppy editing from time to time, creating mistakes like missing words or typos. Yet in a way ..it adds to the thrill. The meta feeling of reading a book about a book while being part of every level of the story. Like Richard House had to put it down in a hurry, running around like the people in The Kills.
So what is the story? What are the four stories, combined in this one, huge, creation? It’s about the Middle East, intervening and building there. It’s about a multinational company that doesn’t seem to do anything else besides making sure that the right men and material arrive at the necessary spot, wherever it is. It’s about a man who sheds identities like dandruff but seems to be unsure about who he was originally. It’s about a thriller that was fictional, but gets a real life following, resulting in a mess with prostitutes and tourists. It’s about desert roads that are only being build to launder money, it’s about cats that are being killed. It’s about a lot.
As with every series, there are better and lesser books. In the first two books the connections are very clear, the backgrounds and surroundings similar. Book 3 goes completely off that grind (I still don’t know its place) and book 4 doesn’t neatly tie up every plot line either. And yet, it’s an easy accessible world. To read feels to passively participate, even though there are very little clues to cling to. Take you time for The Kills. It might as well turn out to be an exciting adventure.
The Kills: Books 1 – 4, Richard House, Picador 2013