First Sentence: I was hot.
you’re looking for a gentle entry into a story, you won’t find it here.
Benn has both his character, and his reader fully involved from the
beginning. There is an excellent setup to the crime early in the story.
However, even with action that is practically non-stop, Benn manages
to include an excellent plot twist.
Each of the Billy Boyle
books takes the reader to a different location with a basis on an event
in history. It’s nice to have a completely involving story with a bit
of education rolled in. Benn’s voice is strong and provides evocative
descriptions…”Yellow flowers were clipped by flying lead, scattering
bouquets over the dead and dying.”
It is the character of Billy
who truly drives the story and Benn skillfully provides the reader with
details of Billy’s background. He is also our moral center. His
realization regarding the events of his recent past, the effects of the
ware, backbreaking labor and poverty on the poor are powerfully
expressed, while Benn points out one of the tragic facts of history.
“Blood alone moves the wheels of history,” Sciafani quoted [said by
Mussolini]. An element that makes the story particularly interesting
is Billy’s amnesia. Yet, in spite of it, it demonstrates that he is
capable and a survivor, as well as caring and clever. “When I was
trying to figure out who I was, I ran into a Sicilian doctor. He told
me about amnesia and said I was the most fortunate of men because I was
about to discover who I was. He told me some philosopher once said the
unexamined life is not worth living, and that I was being given the
opportunity to examine mine.”
“Blood Alone” is a very good blending of fiction and actual history with excellent characters and great action.
BLOOD ALONE (Hist Mys-Billy Boyle-Italy-WWII) – VG
James R. Benn – 3rd in series