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A Small Town

de Thomas Perry

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8810237,070 (3.31)4
"In A Small Town, twelve conspirators meticulously plan to throw open all the gates to the prison that contains them, so that more than a thousand convicts may escape and pour into the nearby small town. The newly freed prisoners rape, murder, and destroy the town-burning down homes and businesses. An immense manhunt ensues, but the twelve who plotted it all get away. After two years, all efforts by the local and federal police agencies have been in vain. The mayor and city attorney meet, and Leah Hawkins, a six-foot, two-inch former star basketball player and resident good cop, is placed on sabbatical so that she can tour the country learning advanced police procedures. The sabbatical is merely a ruse, however, as her real job is to track the infamous twelve. And kill them. Leah's mission takes her across the country, from Florida to New York, from California to an anti-government settlement deep in the Ozarks. Soon, the surviving fugitives realize what she is up to, and a race to kill or be killed ensues. Full of exhilarating twists and surprisingly resonant, A Small Town will sweep readers along on Leah's quest for vengeance"--… (mais)
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** spoiler alert ** One of the great things about Perry is that he doesn't feel the need to temper his protagonists' devilish deeds with morally based mitigations, like some films and books do. For example, in many stories, the hero is not allowed to kill the bad guy before the bad guy threatens the hero's life, thereby preserving the hero's moral superiority. Perry has no such imperative. Leah Hawkins knows from the outset that she is going to commit murder, and she's fine with that. And, devilishly, the reader is all in. It's a fun ride. I have one major implausibility problem, however: her bosses and the town bigshots know exactly what she is planning, and not only do they look the other way, but they enable her with the money the feds have given the town and employ a "don't ask don't tell" policy about how she reaches her goals. They're on board with the cold blooded murders but don't want to know the details. Otherwise, a fun ride. ( )
  ChayaLovesToRead | Apr 7, 2021 |
July 19 in Weldonville, Colorado, all hell breaks loose! A prison break!
And it happens in the first 30 pages! Bam!
12 men plan it, about 1,200 escape, and the town, and people, of Weldonville pay for it.
Two years later, Leah Hawkins goes after the 12... with the full backing of Weldonville!
The story of the prison break, and the flashbacks to it are the best parts of this book. The hunt, though I loved the reason behind it, not so much. Too heavy on backstories that didn’t matter much to the plot. ( )
  Stahl-Ricco | Jul 15, 2020 |
I love a good Thomas Perry. This one was good. Not his very best but very good. Interesting plot about a team of prisoners who break out of a private prison located in a small town... and the aftermath. ( )
  susandennis | Jun 5, 2020 |
Small Town is an intriguing tale of a small town that becomes a victim of a well choreographed prison break, in which hundreds or dangerous felons overtake the federal prison and escape into the surrounding area wreaking havoc. Most inmates were rounded up and returned to the prison. All but 12. The 12 men, who were considered the main conspirators of the prison break remain free. Hundreds of people died as a result of the violent actions of these 12 men, and 2 years later Chief Leah Hawkins has decided to handle the 12 men once for all with her own brand of vigilante justice. With a secret back door funding provided by the city council, Leah embarks on a journey to track down the 12 and even the score once and for all. One by one, Leah systematically hunts down the 12 men and has them executed. The story is strongest for me in the first half of this story as Events of the horrific night of July 19th are recounted and Leah executes a systematic manhunt. The last third of the book while it does wrap up the storyline wasn’t as strong as the first 2/3 of the book. Overall, the book is a fun read and should appeal to fans of this author. Thank you to Netgalley for the early copy of the book. ( )
  hana321 | Jan 28, 2020 |
Implausible Pursuit* x Twelve
Review of the Audible Audio audiobook edition (2020)

This starts off as being a quite implausible 'Death Wish' type pursuit across America as a small town sheriff goes into vigilante mode to track down the escaped convicts who destroyed her community while they were also able to evade the entire police forces of the country except for her. i.e. we are in superhero territory here, rather than a plausible mystery story.

It becomes even more implausible as there is a twist about halfway through where the hunter becomes the hunted and the surviving convicts come gunning for her and the remainder of the community.

There are still elements of Thomas Perry's skill at describing investigative methods and writing evade and pursuit thrillers, but if you can't really buy into the premise then it is a bit of a slog to get through it all.

The narration by Christina Delaine was outstanding in all voices, particularly the number of criminals that she had to evoke through changes of voice depth, accents and speech patterns. That bumped this to a 3 [Like] from what would otherwise have been a 2 [It was OK].

* Pursuit (2006) was an earlier similar themed vigilante chases criminal thriller by Thomas Perry, but with one vs. one characters. ( )
  alanteder | Jan 21, 2020 |
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"In A Small Town, twelve conspirators meticulously plan to throw open all the gates to the prison that contains them, so that more than a thousand convicts may escape and pour into the nearby small town. The newly freed prisoners rape, murder, and destroy the town-burning down homes and businesses. An immense manhunt ensues, but the twelve who plotted it all get away. After two years, all efforts by the local and federal police agencies have been in vain. The mayor and city attorney meet, and Leah Hawkins, a six-foot, two-inch former star basketball player and resident good cop, is placed on sabbatical so that she can tour the country learning advanced police procedures. The sabbatical is merely a ruse, however, as her real job is to track the infamous twelve. And kill them. Leah's mission takes her across the country, from Florida to New York, from California to an anti-government settlement deep in the Ozarks. Soon, the surviving fugitives realize what she is up to, and a race to kill or be killed ensues. Full of exhilarating twists and surprisingly resonant, A Small Town will sweep readers along on Leah's quest for vengeance"--

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