The good folks at Hard Case have served up a heaping helping of holiday hell in the form of Daniel Boyd’s heist novel, Easy Death. The story follows two hired goons charged with the unenviable task of robbing an armoured truck just days before Christmas. Will they succeed in their mission or will a brutal snowstorm throw their plans awry?
A relatively new name in crime fiction, Daniel Boyd is a pseudonym for a retired police officer and Easy Death is his first novel with renowned publisher Hard Case Crime. Easy Death follows a handful of characters, often switching from first person to third person narration and while the story itself is both solid and plausible, the narration shift is often jarring. Full disclosure: I’m never a fan of this so it’s likely I’ll complain every time I see it.
While I enjoyed the peppering of Christmas songs into the story at first, I felt Boyd went back to the well too often, to the point the lyrics became a distraction (and this is coming from a guy who LOVES Christmas). I felt Ernest Cline did this to great effect when he injected the 80s sound into his novel, Ready Player One whereas this feels like Boyd is hitting you over the head with a giant candy cane.
Despite those complaints, I thought Boyd put forth a good effort in creating a fun story for the holiday season. Is it something I’ll read again? Probably not, but it’s worth a look – it is Hard Case after all.