Murder Watch Part I: Gun Laws is the first in a two-part series. This book starts out with a workplace shooting leaving three dead and the shooter holding a gun to his head. It immediately backs up to an indeterminate time and starts telling the story of the security guards for the Boston Monitor newspaper. Rosy Panicker is the Site Manager for the security guards; Vinny, Rosy’s brother who is also a guard, is convinced they have the potential for a workplace shooting somewhere amongst the guards and he’s convinced Rosy to read the list of warning signals he’s compiled for her. This story revolves around the security guards, as it appears the shooter is one of them (although we don’t know for sure). In particular, the story revolves around a guard called Moses.
This novel portrays security guards as the dregs of society; minimum wage employees with no skills, no ambition, no hopes or dreams. These guards are losers, braggarts, psychos and old men who have given up. Enter Moses. Moses is a young, foreign, black man who has a significant effect on the other guards. He has a very calm, stoic manner about him that influences the other guards, apparently for the better; some of them turn to self-examination and resolve to be better people. Part I is laying the groundwork for Part II. Nothing of major significance really happens, although there are a couple of incidents with Moses, which serve as inspiration for the other guards. At the end of the book, one of the guards is fired and we assume he’s going to be the problem, but we just don’t know.
This is a different and intriguing book. It’s very gritty and made me very uncomfortable. But, I didn’t put it down! I am curious to find out what happens, and have purchased Part II. I find it well-written and easy to read from a language perspective. The content is what makes me uneasy; and I’m sure that was the author’s intent.
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