From Jeff Johnson, a man who is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors, comes this noir-ish tale of theft, ball bearings, tattoo shops and gentrification. I loved it!
Set in Portland, Oregon, (with some forays down to the California coast), the city itself became a character. Old Town, one of the holdouts from the gentrification going on all around, was vividly drawn. A neighborhood with lots of rain and dilapidated buildings, but also with residents who, (with the proper motivation), will help protect their own.
Darby owns a tattoo shop, Lucky Supreme, and a few years back some of his old flash was stolen. (This is the name for the designs that hang on the wall in tattoo shops, some of which is valuable now.) Darby has had the word out about it, and he finally gets a lead as to where the stolen flash is located. As Darby heads to the California coast to get his flash back, he meets up with characters I won't soon forget-some enemies and some friends, but all compelling. Darby himself is somewhat of an enigma.
" I found myself smiling at the quantity of the madness I carried around inside me."
That's all I'll say about the plot, except for 2 more things: food and humor. All of Jeff's books feature at least one character who cooks, and man, the food always sounds delicious. Lastly, his books feature a black sense of humor that always works for me and this one was no different.
"Hurl crazy hookers at the enemy at every opportunity. Sun Tzu said that, didn't he?"
I swore to myself that I wouldn't start any more books that were part of a series, but with Jeff Johnson, I could not resist. This is an engaging tale full of captivating characters, a protagonist you can root for, (even though he's not your typical hero type), and a city where it is nearly always raining, but whose residents have a spirit that rises above. Lucky Supreme is a fun book with often sharp insights into human behavior and I give it my highest recommendation!
Available here on April 11th: Lucky Supreme: A Novel of Many Crimes (A Darby Holland Crime Novel)
*Thank you to Edelweiss and the publisher for the free E-ARC in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*