There is cool and there is awesome. Don Draper is cool; Clint Eastwood is awesome. Frank Sinatra is cool; Sean Connery is awesome. Do you understand now? Good. Max Allan Collins’ “Quarry” is very awesome. The character has been around since the 70s in one capacity or another, but recently Hard Case Crime, one of the coolest publishers ever, has been printing original novels featuring the notorious hitman. After 2006’s The First Quarry and 2008’s The Last Quarry, it is only right to now have Quarry in the Middle. As you can imagine this takes place in the middle of the Quarry timeline.
For those of you who aren’t familiar, Quarry is the alias of a very smart assassin. At this point, he is no longer working for The Broker and wants revenge. So he finds further hitmen, discovers who their targets are and offers the target his services to kill their hitman. Like I said, he’s awesome. There are plenty of worthy hitman series to read like the wonderful John Rain series by Barry Eisler. What makes this one so special? It’s because of Quarry, himself. The first person narrative is witty and fun. The plotting is fast pace and exciting, as is custom with Collins. I hope I am not spoiled by these recent additions to the series and have to wait a few decades for another adventure.