LET US PREY by Bill Branon


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 A raffish lot of gamblers, assassins, and hookers unwittingly involve themselves in a mammoth anti-democratic conspiracy and then try to undo it. Branon, who seems to have tried out every role in his book, published and flogged this better-than-average thriller himself (Black Seal, 1992) until HarperCollins finally got smart and bought it. There's a plot afoot to bring the IRS to its hateful knees. The plotters, whoever they are, appear to have enough cash to buy the best killers, bombers, and bagmen America has to offer. The killers are a pair of weird but devoted brothers named Mitch and Ram. Mitch and Ram raised each other from pups. Mitch relates to engines, and Ram relates to guns. The bagman extraordinaire is Father Kevin, an oversized priest with a taste for the Las Vegas craps tables. The man who seems to be a the center of things is an ultra-fit militant libertarian named Rabyburn Varki. At least that's who Father Kevin and the brothers think is in charge. But there are strings pulling strings, and Mr. Varki is himself being manipulated from the very center of Washington, D.C. Why on earth? It's all very confusing. Before things are sorted out, Father Kevin's motorized multi-state money drops will have funded the perfectly timed simultaneous destruction of a number of regional tax processing centers. They will also have brought into his orbit an appealing young woman. America panics. Father Kevin teaches the young lady how to roll the dice. Plots within plots and boxes within boxes, and one is not quite sure at the end if one has been had, but the trip is great fun. Branon's outlaws, the nonpolitical ones, are appealing, funny, and, in their loyalty to each other, rather nice. (First printing of 100,000)

Pub Date: Feb. 16th, 1994
ISBN: 0-06-017759-4
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15th, 1993