Giovanni Rex’s noir-ish novels cut a broad swath across the contemporary genre. This is part due to the complexity of time shifts, narrative voices, and bizarre characterizations. Part thriller, part literary musing, the author’s tone is a times a moral cry for a better society, with more compassion, less violence, but at others the pages are awash with blood and sex. Whom ever the author is, and there are plenty of hints within his novels to assume there is another hand behind the declared writer, an excellent puppet master is pulling the literary strings. He/she has taken the noir convention and cut it to pieces.
How many deaths does it take for a country to say enough is enough? Inspector Matsuko has had enough, so has his wife, he needs a holiday, somewhere far away, somewhere benign like New Zealand, but his father-in-law, the author Giovanni Rex has ideas for a new book, it will be about the O.K. Corral but there’s a bunch of cowboys on the lose intent on creating mayhem, stealing from banks, kidnapping dogs, settling old scores. Then they want a shootout, something like the Wild West only they’re headed for a small town in Italy, a traditional town that doesn’t want hamburger bars but would be happy to have the same recognition as Tombstone Arizona. When is enough going to be enough when there’s a sniper with 12 bullets and 12 angry men to deal with? Call in the reluctant gunman, deputise others, when there’s a woman and the law to protect somebody has to put on a tin star.