The Last Kind Words by Tom Piccirilli
Bantam Books, New York, 2012
Borrowed from my local library. A book from my RIP VII reading pool. I am really glad to have discovered this author.
Wow, talk about dysfunctional families. The Rand’s are a family of thieves and have been thieves for generations. They are bound by honor, love and closely held secrets. When Terrier Rand is called home by his brother, Collie, some of those secrets are exposed to the light, with devastating consequences.
Let me explain. Collie ( yes, the Rand’s are all named after dog breeds) is on death row, about to be executed. He was charged with the murders of eight people, openly admits his crime, and has never explained what happened on that awful night. Five years after the murder his family is still in shock. Terry, having run from home after the murders, abandoning his girlfriend and his family, comes running back at his brother’s request. He doesn’t even understanding why. He returns to the house where he grew up, to his Mother and Father, Sister, Grandfather and Uncles, and all the buried feelings held within.
Surprisingly, considering the horrible violence, I loved this book. The Rand family is not exactly likable, but I found myself caring about each one of them, even Collie, unrepentant, sitting in prison and waiting to die. Pirrilli’s writing kept me up at night, his ability to build relationships and grab onto the defining, disturbing aspects of this family, had me in awe at times. I really appreciate emotional depth in a thriller. I also appreciate humor, which Pirrilli uses to bring light to the dark. I suggest you read this one, even if you are not a fan of the genre.