Mysterious Book Report Slaughterhouse BluesSlaughterhouse Blues by Nick Kolakowski

Shotgun Honey/ Down & Out Books, PB, $11.95, 136 pages, ISBN 978-1-946502-40-7

Do you ever take a chance on a book, based only on the title, or cover illustration?  It’s a fun way to discover a new author or genre you might otherwise pass up.  Or Not, in which case the non-profit stores and neighborhood churches always need stuff to sell.  But, when it works out as hoped, it’s a delightful experience.  Which is exactly what happened when the MBR was intrigued by the title of a nifty piece of crime fiction that was featured in last months edition of  The Mysterious Newsletter.

Slaughterhouse Blues, by Nick Kolakowski is a short, but intense piece of hard-boiled crime fiction that features a pair of romantically linked antiheros named Fiona and Bill.  Together, they’re gun-loving masters of bad-assiveness . . . he’s a big-time, big-score, high-living master thief and she’s a dead-shot, merciless, hitter-for-hire.  As the tale begins, Bill and Fiona are holed up down in Cuba, where they’re on the run from the Rockaway Mob, from whom Bill “borrowed” several million dollars in their first adventure, A Brutal Bunch of Heartbroken Saps.  They know that the mob godfathers are going to come for them, but they’re unprepared for a pair of assassins who’re so utterly amoral, they’re almost insane.  From Cuba to Nicaragua to New York City, the chase is on and Bill and Fiona won’t survive unless they can somehow pull off an impressive robbery of an improbable treasure with an unspeakably ugly past.  This little gem of a novel will only take a couple of lunch hours to read, but it’ll keep you entertained a lot longer than that!


John Dwaine McKenna