The Contract

J. M. Gulvin

A string of murders. A missing blues singer. A leaky DA’s office. Cops and pimps in each other’s pockets.

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Date Published
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In New Orleans, Texas Ranger John Q is out of his jurisdiction, and possibly out of his depth. It seems everyone in Louisiana wants to send him home, and every time he asks questions there’s trouble: from the pharmacist to the detective running scared to the pimp who turned to him as a last resort. Before John Q knows it, he looks the only link between a series of murders.

So who could be trying to set him up, and why, and who can he turn to in a city where Southern tradition and family ties rule?

Infused with the rhythms of its iconic setting, The Contract is a thriller to keep even the most seasoned crime readers gripped and guessing all the way to its endgame.

Critic Reviews

Ambitious … the characters are finely drawn, as is the underlying racial and social tension that was undoubtedly a feature in the American South in the 1960s and is never far from the surface of the narrative, giving a compelling, disturbing relevance to the story … Gulvin hits bullseye on plot, characters and style. His writing is pared-down yet atmospheric, with echoes of Elmore Leonard and even Cormac McCarthy.

Thriller Books Journal
Critic Reviews

John Quarrie, a sergeant with the Texas Rangers … is a fearsome shot with a pistol, intelligent and resourceful, and with a great deal of resilience. He’s definitely ‘old school’ and with some of the ease in his surroundings you see in Elmore Leonard’s heroes … The sense of time and place propels the story well beyond a simple tale of a Texas Ranger, and the final pages are truly chilling.

Crime Review
Critic Reviews

A noir thriller with some terrific descriptive prose that brings the vagaries of that time to vivid life … addictive.

Liz Loves Books
Critic Reviews

I would recommend this slice of ‘Americana’ to any reader of modern crime fiction … combines elements of a conspiracy thriller with a pinch of police procedural …a quality thriller.

Nudge New Books
Critic Reviews

The Contract has such a fine sense of time and place it’s hard to believe JM Gulvin didn’t grow up in this day and age ...[will] very much appeal to fans of James Lee Burke’s Dave Robicheaux books... the second in what I hope will be a very long and successful series.

Crime Worm
Critic Reviews

A compelling read ... original and engaging.

Never Imitate

JM Gulvin divides his time between Wales and the western United States. He is the author of many previous novels, as well as Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman’s bestselling travel book Long Way Down. The Long Count is his first John Q mystery and will be followed by The Contract in Spring 2017.

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