Nicholas falls into the heroin smuggling business almost by accident, as it seems like a good way to make easy money quickly. So it begins, but things eventually start to fall apart. Good times are followed by increasing paranoia, friendships turn to rivalries, and romance is ruined by lies. Feeling that things are coming unstuck, Nicholas becomes more and more reckless, until his inevitable arrest. The second half of the book covers the time he spends behind bars, the array of interesting characters he meets in various government facilities, and his eventual release.
This isn’t your usual run-of-the-mill true crime story but a work with true literary style. The author is obviously well-educated and has a tremendous vocabulary, although there are a few minor editing errors. The current-day story is interspersed with reminiscences of his “criminal” activities as a child, which serve to humanize him, as does his relationship with his girlfriend L (to whom the book is dedicated). Even though we know that Nicholas will eventually get caught, the story is still suspenseful because we don’t know when it will happen or under what circumstances.
I would have liked more of an idea of the passage of time, as the period over which Nicholas performs his criminal activities and the length of his imprisonment aren’t made clear. I was surprised at one point to discover he spent four years in prison before he was even sentenced. While the story is very well-written, it feels a bit light-hearted given the subject matter. I would have preferred some more introspection from the author on the impact of his actions on those around him and, perhaps, some indication that he regrets his actions, further to his feeling of the loss of six years of his life. I get the impression he’s holding back, which may be a coping mechanism and, therefore, understandable.
An engrossing cautionary tale for our times.
Warnings: coarse language, criminal activity, drug use, excessive alcohol consumption, LGBT themes, sexual references.
I received this book in return for an honest review.
- Format: Kindle Edition
- File Size: 798 KB
- Print Length: 292 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: iambic Books (1 January 2019)
- Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B07KWW1JJL
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Customer Reviews:
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #192,404 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)