Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

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Saturday, December 31, 2016

Katja From the Punk Band

Katja From the Punk Band, Simon Logan, Chizine Publications, 2010

Katja is a young woman with a partially-shaved head and a tracheostomy tube coming out of her throat. Playing in a local punk band on an 8 by 12-mile island work camp called home, like everyone else, she wants to get to the mainland by any way possible.

Katja shoots her boyfriend and takes a very valuable vial from him (perhaps it's a new chemical drug). There will be someone on the mainland waiting for the vial, but the deal is for two people, so Katja enlists the help of Nikolai, a local junkie. The ship is leaving for the mainland in a couple of hours.

Unfortunately, Aleksakhina, Katja's corrupt parole officer, chooses tonight to do his job and detains her for not checking in on schedule. He is not the only one who wants the vial as the ticket to the mainland. There's Vladimir Kohl, a local chemical dealer; there is his boss, Szerynski, along with Dracyev, a rival chemical kingpin, and Ylena, his lover.

Katja and Nikolai regain possession of the vial. Their next problem is getting on the ship. The area is full of police who are authorized to kill anyone who attempts to stow away on the ship. If a stowaway is found on the ship while it is in transit, getting shot and thrown off the ship in the middle of the ocean is the least of their problems. Do Katja and Nikolai board the ship? Do they get off the ship on the mainland, also without the police finding them?

This is a really good industrial crime/suspense tale. The reader can almost hear the punk rock soundtrack all throughout this book. It is raw, fearless and very much worth reading.

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