Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-06-01
- Reviewer: Staff
Small-time hit man Arthurzico “Zico” Alves, the narrator of this riveting existential thriller set on the rivers of backcountry Brazil, is trying to mend his ways. He’s found a shop clerk girlfriend, Daniella, and developed a bond with a boat transport operator, Raul. But then a local crime boss uses these burgeoning relationships to blackmail Zico into taking on the assassination of activist nun Sister Delores Beckett. Zico travels with Raul to take a cargo of smuggled goods to a delivery point that will also put him in a good location to murder Sister Beckett. But Daniella insists on going along, and tensions rise when Leonardo, the man who hired Raul to do the smuggling, comes aboard. Soon Leonardo precipitates a cascade of violence that Zico fears will end in either his own redemption or death for those he loves. Though the plot meanders at times, Smith (The Child Thief) does a good job depicting the stark choices his characters must face along the way to the stirring climax. (Aug.)