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lhr Audible Team
I love a good story, even more so, if it is artfully told.
Yes, I admit it, I am a Lansdale fan and I cannot get enough of Hap and Leonard. I do not know of any other pair of guys in literature, who are so bizarre and yet so likeable. This blend of rock solid friendship, aged hippy mentality, mid life crisis, a little bit of Texas redneck mentality paired with leaned back tolerance and down to earth good-naturedness is incredible hilarious and entertaining.
Phil Gigante tells the story with just the right amount of gravel and Southern touch in his voice to complete the picture.
As usually Hap's life is a mess. He has a shitty job, his car is a wreck and he lost his house in a tornado and had to move in with Leonard, who is getting fed up with this slob on his living room couch. Of course Hap could move in with Brett, the ex-sweet potato queen and the woman he is really in love with, but somehow he is too scared to do that.
The situation takes an exciting turn, when Brett's daughter Tillie, whose career as a hooker got her into serious trouble, needs to be rescued from the Bandido Supremes, a violent gang in Mexico, she has to provide with sexual favors as a kind of punishment for misdemeanor. The rescue operation involves a midget with an inflated ego and serious character flaws, an Oklahoma crime lord, a former killer turned preacher, an unlicensed pilot with a drinking problem and more than a handful of less respectable guys with a tendency towards violence.
Don't be too critical as far as the story goes, it is bizarre, clownish and highly unrealistic. But this is not about the action of the characters, it is all about their interaction, the unique friendship of a redneck hippy and a queer black, the crazy stuff, love makes as do and the struggle to do the right thing.
It is probably not the best book in the series and I wonder where Lansdale is heading with the series, but it made me laugh and I had fun reading it.
What a pleasant surprise, it was my first Kwei Quartey and I loved it.
Kwei Quartey shows his deep love and concern for todays Ghana, but his view is not obfuscated by romanticism, he paints a very realistic picture of the problems the country encounters on its way to a more modern society.
Dominic Hoffman does a decent enough job in narrating the story, but his intonation of the different local or international dialects is not always convincing. I especially missed the melodious touch, Ghanaian people can give to the English language.
The story itself is quite complex. A cruel murder of a high ranking oil executive and his spouse has been committed and the mutilation of one of the bodies might indicate some dark rites or even a human sacrifice. After the local police does not make any progress in solving the mystery, inspector Dawson is sent to from Accra to Takoradi to take over the investigation. The investigation confronts Dawson with deeply rooted hatred between family clans, superstition and witchcraft and corruption at the highest level. The conflict between the rapidly developing oil industry and the local fishermen and environmentalist makes the murder mystery even more difficult to unravel.
The story rings true and seems to reflect the current situation in Ghana very accurately. There are some minor details, especially towards the end, where the story appears to be constructed and some events take a less than realistic turn, but all of that does not really do any harm to the overall positive impression.
A great book for arm chair travelers to learn more about Ghana, but also for people, who know Ghana, because it takes them back to a place, they love and cherish.