Simon & Schuster, July 2004, 22.84, 209 pp.
One night a gunman enters the Hatto house and kills the father, mother and son. It has all the earmarks of a professional hit. Their teenage daughter Ella is in Italy with her boyfriend when two men aim guns aim at her. Out of nowhere before they can murder her, a third gunman kills them. Lucas tells them that Ella's father hired him to watch over them in their travels.
He informs Ella that her family is dead; she does not understand why someone would order professional hits on an ordinary middle class family. Lucas tells her that her father once operated on the wrong side of the law, selling drugs and armaments as well as laundering money. When she returns to England, Ella gives the police time to find her family's killer, but they fail. Ella is determined to take the law into her own hands. She hires Lucas to find out who destroyed her family and then she will deal with them personally.
There is a lot of action in FOR THE DOGS but the heart of this book lies with the two main characters Ella and Lucas. She becomes more like the man Lucas once was, a cold, remote loner intent on personally make the people who destroyed her life pay while Lucas is moving in the opposite direction. After his business with Ella is finished, he wants to connect with his daughter and reconnect with the only woman he ever loved. Kevin Wignall's prose is stark yet eloquent as his latest thriller is exciting and heartbreaking.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner