I first heard about the Righteous Men a few years back on Richard And Judy’s book club. It was their choice for their Summer Read. I have to admit, cheap, fast moving thrillers such as ‘The Da Vinci Code’ are not my thing and this was claimed as a successor to such. So why did I read it. Well, it was the concept that appealed to me. 36 Men in the world. If they all die the world will be destroyed or some great apocalyptic event or rapture will happen. But someone starts killing them. That’s the selling line of the book “Someone is killing good people. Why?” which has got to be the worst tag line ever for any movie or book.
As I was said, the concept interest me and I had intended to pick it up but never got around to it until finding it at a bargain price in a bookstore in Tokyo, still with the sticker of recommendation from Richard and Judy. I picked it up and finally got into it. Unfortunately the concept which I was so interested in isn’t even brought up until after page 400. But I am partly glad I knew about this plot point beforehand because I don’t think I could read through 400 pages of a Character in utter confusion as to what the heck is going on unless I myself knew first. The main character, Will Monroe, isn’t the sharpest tool in the box, or either he is just intentionally acting dumb so he can hang out with his hot ex gf instead of getting his whiny kidnapped wife back. I say this because he sure does go into a lot of detail about the facets which his ex holds, from time to time he remembers he loves his ex wife, particularly after he fantasizes of his ex and kisses her. But I guess we have to have something a bit hot under the collar to appeal to everyone. Actually, after spending a lot of time trying to get his wife back the bigger mystery of why “GOOD PEOPLE!” are being killed seems to grab his interest more even though it’s sounds like a lot of clap trap to those with any sense.
Yes, this is the Da Vinci code alright, except this time it’s focus is on Judaism. We have the intelligent ex gf who solves the puzzles and riddles with her in depth knowledge, we have a big twist near the end of the novel when one of the characters is revealed to be the leader of the religious cult which is killing the Righteous Men (a reveal which i guessed was going to happen around page 2 or so). This villain that is pulling all the strings, I had imagined as an Ian Mckellen or Christopher Plummer type role. We have an ending where an unborn child might have being the messiah and each chapter ends on a predictable cliffhanger. This ain’t TV, we bought the book, we’re likely to read it all the way through, the constant need to make us read the next chapter comes off as a little desperate and cheap.
I even got the feeling the author was getting tired near the last hundred pages or so. Running out of ways to describe the character’s actions or perspective or physical action he simple moved onto the next character speaking with ‘It was Will’. ‘It was TC’. ‘It was Tom’.
The book reads more like a movie. I’m guessing most of these types of Books do. But it’s not all that exciting a movie if so and most twists you can see coming a mile off, the mystery is pretty much spelled for the reader to catch on before the main character does.
I think if you have time to waste and are interested in a type of book that doesn’t require too much mental strain (and we really are talking very little here) then pick this up. In that regard it’s not a bad read and some parts are genuinely interesting. But at 500+ pages there is a lot in this that isn’t captivating. But don’t take my word for it. It’s ‘The best thriller I’ve read in years.’ according to Piers Morgan.