Gun Machine

Gun Machine

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
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After losing his partner in a shootout, Detective John Tallow discovers an apartment filled with guns that were each used in an unsolved murder stretching back over twenty years.
Publisher: New York : Mulholland Books/Little, Brown and Co., c2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780316187404
0316187402
Branch Call Number: ELLIS W
Ellis, W
Characteristics: 308 p. ; 25 cm

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SCL_Justin Jul 28, 2017

Gun Machine is the new book by Warren Ellis and it is great. It’s less weird than Crooked Little Vein, but is a tight little police story you can tell is from the same guy who wrote Fell.

John Tallow is a New York City cop who accidentally finds an apartment full of guns. Not just a few shelves of them, but guns arrayed on the walls and floor like a shrine. Once they start getting analyzed it becomes clear that this isn’t just a gun nut’s shack; each weapon has been used in an unsolved NYC murder. Investigation ensues.

There’s a lot to love about this book. Tallow is a detective who is very believable in his “just going through the motions” before he starts working the case. Ellis writes likable foul-mouthed weirdos as Tallow’s sort-of assigned partners. The story (and the case) moves quickly, but it works. I bought that this didn’t need to be five seasons of a TV series (though The Wire made me right at home with the police politics on display in the story). There are a few coincidences at work that might make your eyebrow raise but Ellis is playing fair with you. It all works.

My least favourite part is the Native American history that gets bandied about, and that was mostly because I know Warren Ellis is an Englishman and this stuff is easy to get wrong. But anything here is way less problematic from my point of view than Johnny Depp as Tonto.

Though Pappa Warren writes great violence — “From his vantage, three steps back and to the right, Tallow could see Rosato’s eye a good five inches outside Rosato’s head and still attached to his eye socket by a mess of red worms.” — I think my favourite bit of pure wordsmithery was a cooking scene late in the book. There are all these details that work into Tallow’s mental state and the realization he has works so well with them, I wanted to applaud.

d
DwnTwnGal
Sep 18, 2014

Great read. Highly recommend to anyone looking for a new plot idea to the overabundance of crime novels.

s
StarGladiator
Apr 18, 2013

Hellaciously good read! An original plot, for goodness sakes!

t
Twayne
Mar 18, 2013

Better written although not as weird as Crooked Little Vein.

l
Limboden76
Feb 24, 2013

Strong start; weak finish.

p
paperclypse2
Feb 23, 2013

Quite the page turner!

ChristchurchLib Feb 12, 2013

February 2013 Thrillers and Suspense newsletter http://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=599486

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