Ekemar (The Callaghan Tetralogy, 2018, etc.) revisits the adventurous exploits of Matthias Callaghan in this exhilarating opening to a new trilogy.
Callaghan’s odyssey began when he was mutilated by Russian mobsters, received a face transplant at a Swiss clinic, and then set out to wreak revenge. Along the way, he switched faces again to assume his father’s identity and continued to juggle the myriad aspects of his convoluted life. Now, his Jekyll-and-Hyde existence seemingly behind him, Callaghan has a new family, a new house, and a new life in Australia. Ekemar spends the lion’s share of this installment laying out the protagonist’s situation while establishing the various characters and what roles they’ll play in the cliffhanger ending. He effectively assembles a complex web of mobsters, reporters, cops (clean and dirty, local and international), smugglers, and people who’ve been wronged by one or more of Callaghan’s ever shifting personae. The action bounces around to encompass Russian gangster machinations in the United Kingdom, a smuggling operation by plane and camel caravan in Morocco and Mauritania, other members of the Russian mob tailing a dirty cop as he lives it up in France, a crucial arrest at an Italian airport, and a blissfully ignorant Callaghan awaiting his third child. In between, Ekemar skillfully and unobtrusively recaps pertinent details of Callaghan’s unique history via dialogue, introspection, speculation, and exposition. Readers will find it useful to read Ekemar’s last four Callaghan books before approaching this one. However, it will surely please established fans.
A fast-paced, page-turning continuation of a singular and thought-provoking series.