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Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite
Punishment & Good Deeds by Andrew C McDonald is an exciting thriller that is packed with action. Air Force commando Thomas Mazuko has just retired from service and his plans are simple: spend more time with family and teach karate. But witnessing an elderly woman being mugged pulls him into a war he never asked for. It is not long before he realizes he has become the target of a powerful local syndicate whose boss will stop at nothing to get revenge. But revenge for what? To understand what drives Martin DeValdez, Mazuko must fight to stay alive and to protect his loved ones. But can he win a war forced on him by such a strong enemy?
This is a well-plotted and skillfully written thriller, filled with tension. The author explores the psyche of a vindictive crime boss and demonstrates how far sentiments of revenge can go. The buildup of the tension is steady and fast. The strength of this novel lies in the author’s gift for strong characters and conflict. The protagonist has a military background and is embroiled in a war with a crime syndicate, and with every page, the stakes get higher. The scenes are focused, the paragraph breaks timely, and each chapter is well-crafted with an ending that compels the reader to turn to the next chapter. The prose is good and I loved how the author uses the stream of consciousness to explore the psychological state of the protagonist. Punishment & Good Deeds is a pulsating read with memorable characters and conflict, a delightful read.