Ya know...if I had wanted to read a trilogy or whatever...an ongoing series which cannot be read as a stand-alone, I would do that.
But reading a book, I think the reader deserves
to know whether the book is part of an ongoing series that is open-ended (leaving the reader with numerous loose ends) or not; readers expect a book to be a stand-alone that is unless it says otherwise. A book at the last page reads "The End" for a reason.
I find it important that the Charlie Hood series be read in sequence which I like to read in sequence anyhow. But because this book, #3 in the series, relies somewhat heavily on the past two books and Charlie's previous relationships it's most important that book #1 and #2 be read before this book.
In fact, if someone had just picked this one up at the library and decided to read it because they liked the cover, the blurbs on the back of the dust cover or the rah-rahs that TJP has received, I can see where they would never read another Parker. There are far too many references to previous relationships and events and far too many story-lines left hanging at the last page.
For that reason, and that reason only, I'm giving it three stars other than four or five. I gave five stars for the first in the series L. A. Outlaws
and four to the second, The Renegades
. And let it be clear, I simply LOVE
Parker's writing, just love it!
But hell's bells, I may not even finish reading the series I'm so pissed about all the hanging story-lines. Not as bad as the hanging chads in Florida, but real close. Still pissed about those chads, too.