Book Review: Sucker Punch (Cal Innes #2)

These Cal Innes stories are fun to read and I’m going to keep going with the series. The hero, Cal Innes, is a semi-tough ex-con from England. Cal is relatively well-intentioned but doesn’t have much sense. In fact sometimes you want to scream at him for being so stupid, but he seems to go at it consistently so you can’t say it isn’t realistic unless you don’t know any well-intentioned, stupid people. I know a few.

Cal also seems to be made out of concrete. If I got beaten to a pulp half as much as he does I’d give it up. Every now and then he comes out on top in a physical confrontation, but unfortunately for Cal those times are few and far between.

Sucker Punch is number two in the series and for once I’ve read them in order. I recommend you do the same because some people are introduced in Saturday’s Child, number one in the series. Sucker Punch also refers to things that happen there that you won’t get if you don’t read the first book. Sucker Punch is the same type of book as Saturday’s Child. Cal and his friend Paulo run afoul of Mo, a local thug who’s very unlikeable. Paulo sends Cal out to California with Liam, a promising young boxer, to watch out for him. Most of the time Paulo seems well grounded but couldn’t have been thinking straight when he did that. I won’t tell you what ensues in California, but suffice it to say Cal doesn’t do much to improve our opinion of his intelligence.

The main thing about these books is that they are fun to read. I originally fell into Ray Banks because I read something Johnny Shaw wrote about how much he likes his writing and I really liked Dove Season and Plaster City. If you’re looking for deep meaning this probably isn’t the place to find it. But if you’re looking for some stories to load onto your Kindle for a week at the beach you can spend more money and do a lot worse.


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