Friday, September 25, 2015
Strangers in a bar
Peter Swanson's The Kind Worth Killing is a slick and trashy thriller without a lot of subtlety and nuance, but at the same time I have to admit it's undeniably an entertaining page-turner. A woman meets a stranger at an airport bar, and after hearing his tail of woe about his cheating wife, offers to help him get his revenge on her. As in killing her.
If you check credibility at the door and allow yourself to accept that a woman can talk a stranger- fairly quickly, too- into offing his wife, the story is pretty enjoyable. What's especially enjoyable, and clever, is that the cheating wife, quite coincidentally, just may have psychopathic tendencies of her own. Oh, there's also another guy in the story, one who is particularly dumb and let's himself be manipulated and used by the much smarter women. It was fun to see the poor guy caught in the middle as each woman tries to use him to best the other.
The Kind Worth Killing isn't one of those autumnal, thoughtful thrillers that make us think about our own issues and problems as the various characters confront theirs. But then does every crime story have to be that? Sometimes a sharp, fast-moving story about beautiful people with dark souls, all spinning through an over-the-top plot laced with violence and sex, can deliver decent entertainment, too. This story certainly did.