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Lou Malloy has just maxed out on a fifteen year prison sentence for the theft of $15 million and just before leaving prison he learns that his sister is brutally killed. As he is leaving prison, he’s told to keep his nose clean or he would soon be back. As far as Malloy is concerned all bets were off until he finds his sister’s killer. In the meantime, he has to fight off predators trying to get their hands on the money he stole and keep from being sent back to prison trying to protect those dear to him. He catches a break when he meets up with Hilary Kelly, a private investigator with an agenda of her own, She has been hired by the insurance company that paid on the theft claim of the money stolen from the casino by Malloy. In the course of events, Malloy and Kelly become more than just friends and Kelly decides to throw in with Malloy. Together they work to uncover exactly what happened to Malloy’s sister and why. Their search involves a vicious gang led by a vengeful old man and his crazy son who has his own problems keeping his hands off other women. To make matters worse, Malloy and Kelly’s search is complicated by the fact that Malloy’s sister was really a special agent with the Department of Homeland Security and she was working undercover when she was killed trying to locate the whereabouts of special plates to produce counterfeit currency that if the plates end up in the wrong hands, whole banking systems of major foreign countries could collapse overnight.
As Malloy and Kelly race to find the killer of Malloy’s sister, they enlist the help of Crusher, a pro wrestler who served in the cell next to Malloy at the Atlanta Penitentiary. The decision is made for Malloy and company to hit the same casino again that Malloy robbed fifteen years ago by a special ops unit of the Department of Homeland Security. The plan is complicated by the fact that the ops unit is a phony setup led by a former agent turned rouge who is backed by another vicious gang with international contacts intent on getting their hands on the missing money plates. Malloy decides to go through with the heist of the casino a second time, but on a different schedule than planned. If they don’t make it they have no way to return to the real world. They are in a make or break it race. Read as they race to the finish line and learn if this where the run ends or the run begins….
Dead Money Run is a fast paced, action packed, crime thriller. This is the first book in the Lou Malloy Crime Series.
On the day Lou Malloy is to be released from prison, the warden calls him for a private meeting. “Ten percent of fifteen million is a lot of money,” the warden tells him. He’s probing Lou for the whereabouts of the $15M that was stolen from a casino 15 years earlier. Lou, however, doesn’t bite. He’s got big plans, which include finding the person who killed his sister while he was in the joint.
Enter Hilary Kelly, a 20-something beauty who gives Lou a motorcycle ride from the bus station. She claims to be a student, but Lou is far too wise to fall for it. After crashing in Hilary’s trailer, Lou soon finds her .38 Smith and Wesson and discovers she’s a private investigator who knows something about his sister.
Hilary a great character, and loaded with memorable lines: “Lou, sometimes you can be the nicest killer I have ever known.” Alas, she and Lou were made for each other – he likes to think of himself as a “compassionate killer.”
Fans of James Ellroy and Elmore Leonard are going to love James’ ingenious capers, devious characters and wry humor. The entire book goes down like a strong yet smooth shot of bourbon.
Will Lou reclaim his money, or will he be lured into one last big score? And who killed his sister, anyhow? To James’ credit, the answers will surprise you. This is one crime novel well-worth finishing. - Reviewed by BestThrillers.com