'Scuse Me While I Kill This Guy
Let’s start off with full disclosure: I do not find professional contract killing amusing, charming, or cute. And that is a h-u-u-u-u-ge problem when it comes to enjoying this book, not to mention the new, hip-alicious, ever-so-happening, multiplying-like-locusts hitman/hitwoman sub-genre in general.
Heroine – and this is a term I’m using very loosely – Gin Bombay (see her name is Virginia, so isn’t that cute?) comes from a family of professional killers. Apparently, her family has been in the assassination business for hundreds of years and anyone who attempts to leave the fold is murdered by fellow family members. When children turn five (I kid you not) they are forced to take a blood oath to join the family in happy and profitable killing, with their training commencing soon after. Since Gin’s daughter is about to turn that magical age, she is confronting (and it should be noted, with only minimal reservations) the fact that her child’s training is about to begin.
The book is told in breezy and, yes, wacky (and how I loathe wacky) first-person by Gin who, while musing on the difficulties of running a Girl Scout Troop, slips in helpful hints for those aspiring hit women out there on how to efficiently kill your target, along with fond memories of her own greatest hits. Ugh. And double ugh since her first person narration is also w-a-a-a-a-y in the red on the cutesy meter. So, what you have here is a cute killer getting ready to sacrifice her daughter. Not surprisingly, she remains utterly and completely unsympathetic throughout the entire book.
The romance, such as it is, concerns Gin’s hookup with Diego, a “hot Aussie bodyguard,” according to the back cover copy. Problem is, Gin’s latest target just happens to be Diego’s client. Don’t you just hate it when that happens?
So, Gin begins stalking her “Vic” (that family is just a barrel of laughs) and has adorable interludes with Diego, who also has adorable interludes with Gin’s daughter and brother. It’s all very adorable.
I picked this book for review because I liked the title. Big mistake. I guess I just sort of assumed that the hit woman of the title would be a hit woman for good or something. Not so. In the second half of the book she begins musing adorably about the fact that she tries to limit her hits to bad guys only. Well, I’d like to know just how she is so sure of that since she doesn’t pick her targets who are, in fact, assigned to her by that loving family. And, gee, Gin, I know this isn’t cute or anything, but in civilized countries, people who kill people for money don’t get to play the triple roles of judge, jury, and executioner.
So, I disliked the premise of this book. I disliked the heroine. I disliked the wacky tone. Frankly, I disliked the entire book.
To make matters even worse, the publisher threatens that ’Scuse Me While I Kill This Guy is the first in a new series called Greatest Hits “sure to appeal to fans of Katie MacAlister and Janet Evanovich”. Since I am neither, I think it’s safe to assume that I’ll be just fine with checking out of all of those future “hits”.