2 out of 4 stars
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If you could have a superpower, what would it be? Would you want the ability to fly or to be invisible? Pariah by Robert C. Swetz is about Pariah, a homeless and horribly disfigured man with the ability to find anyone on Earth.
FBI Agent Cliff McNair first met Pariah outside his office in Atlanta. Although distrustful and disgusted by Pariah, Cliff finds himself working with the homeless man to solve missing person cases. However, it isn’t easy to work with Pariah because he’s damaged, both mentally and physically. Cliff’s distrust only increases when he finds out that Pariah had been in jail for child molestation, but keeps working with him because he can find anyone dead or alive.
While I’m not a fan of crime thrillers, I couldn’t resist reading this book because of its plot. Swetz captured my interest and held onto it firmly. I didn’t mind that the book had over 400 pages, as the plot progressed fairly quickly, and I could keep up with the story because there were no unnecessary jargons thrown in. While there were many characters, it wasn’t difficult to keep track of them. These characters were well written, and their dialogues were natural.
As much as I loved the plot, I was massively disappointed by the ending. While I’m sure that Swetz had a vision of how the story would end, it wasn’t executed well. About halfway into the story, the focus shifted from Pariah’s mysterious abilities to a police operation, which I did not like. I feel that the story would have been better if it was written as a series instead of a standalone book.
Additionally, one of my biggest gripes about Pariah is Cliff himself. While I like his character, I couldn’t help but become frustrated at his antics. His potential romantic interest, Cynthia, is an accomplished psychiatrist whose job is to treat Pariah. Without fail, whenever Cliff saw Cynthia, he would always complain about not seeing her legs. I felt that it was really unnecessary, and I reckon that the book would be 50 pages shorter if he worked on his cases instead of focusing on her figure.
I found it really difficult to rate Pariah. If I could, I would rate this book 2.5 stars. However, after much deliberation, my final rating for Pariah is 2 out of 4 stars. I don’t believe that the book was professionally edited, as it contained many errors. I would recommend this book to avid fans of crime thrillers. However, it contains descriptions of rape, mental and physical torture, and profanity. Sensitive readers should steer clear of this book.
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