The Last Kind Words by Tom Piccirilli

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.


Filed under Books, Mystery, R.I.P. VII, Thoughts, Thriller

7 responses to “The Last Kind Words by Tom Piccirilli

  1. It does sound interesting. Why are the characters named after dog breeds though?

    • Gavin

      I have no idea why the Rands are named after dog breeds but it adds one more curious element to an already intriguing family.

  2. Ti

    I love dysfunction. The Rands sound like an interesting family for sure. The dog breed thing is weird, but it happens. Especially in low income areas. They name children after what they know. Maybe they knew dogs?

  3. Hi, I think I read another review for this just recently, maybe on RIP even, that said very similar to you about caring for the characters even in spite of the violence. It’s probably not something I would normally look at but it’s definitely intriguing and I must admit I like reading stories with dysfunctional families.
    Lynn :D

  4. I want to read this! The book sounds good and I’m curious about the whole dog thing.

    • I don’t think the dog thing is every really explained but I am excited to learn that Piccirilli is writing a second book that features the Rand family!

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