by Andrew Post
Review by Mel Jacob
Medallion Press Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9781605424934
Date: 01 March 2013 List Price $14.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Andrew Postís debut novel, Knuckleduster, bodes well for his career as an author. The novel takes place some forty years in the future. It begins with a blind ex-soldier, now a hardened vigilante, who punishes men who abuse women. When an old army buddy asks Brodyís help to locate his missing sister, he soon finds himself fighting for his life against powerful enemies.
Brody Calhoun, a blind ex-soldier, has become a vigilante and made it his mission in life to help women in abusive relationships. Armed with brass knuckles, he makes sure the men responsible receive the equivalent treatment. He meets most of the battered women at a community shelter. Others, after hearing about him, seek his help. His assaults have led to multiple terms in prison, and he is now on parole. The small amounts the women pay him support Brody at a subsistence level.
After his wounds, the Army fitted Brody with a sonar device to serve as his eyes. It provides enough definition of his surroundings to manage daily living. Later, a grateful client gave him a pair of lens that provides detailed orange-colored images. However, the device requires expensive batteries, and, with a limited income, Brody has to ration his use.
As a young man, Brody served a term as a soldier in Egypt along with his buddy Thorp Ashbury, keeping the peace and fighting terrorists. Those events left both men damaged: Brody was blinded and Thorp incapacitated with guilt and PTSD in the aftermath of killing a young boy. After Brody was blinded, they lost touch with one another. Then, Thorp calls Brody and asks his help in dissuading his kid sister from joining the Army.
At first, Brody believes the sister has taken a trip somewhere. According to her best friend, sheís done it before. Unable to find any trace of her, Brody begins to consider kidnapping or murder.
Post, a talented writer, creates strong characters in a believable dark setting forced to accept the unacceptable. The author builds his story bit by bit through events and flashbacks to the Army careers of both Brady and Thorp. The initial clues will make sense once Brady and Thorp face the agents of the real enemy. The violent, over-the top-climax resolves the immediate problem, but leaves a clouded future. Those who see conspiracies everywhere will love this novel. A fine writer, readers will anxiously await Postís next effort.