I received Hands Up by Stephen Clark to review last month. After the Christmas Mayhem and lots of hospital appointments for the girls I finally got a chance to finish reading it last week. I haven’t read Stephen Clark’s previous book, Citizen Kill but was interested to see what Hands Up was all about.
Officer Ryan Quinn, a rookie raised in a family of cops, is on the fast track to detective until he shoots an unarmed black male. Now, his career, reputation and freedom on the line, he embarks on a quest for redemption that forces him to confront his fears and biases and choose between conscience or silence.
Jade Wakefield is an emotionally damaged college student living in one of Philadelphia’s worst neighbourhoods. She knows the chances of getting an indictment against the cop who killed her brother are slim. When she learns there’s more to the story than the official police account, Jade is determined, even desperate, to find out what really happened. She plans to get revenge by any means necessary.
Kelly Randolph, who returns to Philadelphia broke and broken after abandoning his family ten years earlier, seeks forgiveness while mourning the death of his son. But after he’s thrust into the spotlight as the face of the protest movement, his disavowed criminal past resurfaces and threatens to derail the family’s pursuit of justice.
Ryan, Jade and Jelly – three people from different worlds – are on a collision course after the shooting, as their lives interconnect and spiral into chaos.
Stephen Clark is a former award-winning journalist who has worked for the Los Angeles Times and FoxNews.com. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed political thriller Citizen Kill. He grew up in the suburbs of Philidelphia and now lives in North Jersey with his wife and son.
You jump right into the chaos from the start with Hands Up, beginning with Ryan Quinn facing the fact he has just murdered a young black male on duty. The story line is full of twists and turns making you wonder what on earth is going to happen next. Jade is clearly very damaged from her childhood and seeks revenge in the strangest ways.
All of the characters emotions and thoughts are clearly portrayed and you get to know each of the characters quite well. Jade stands out as very damaged, confused and acts in ways you wouldn’t expect. Kelly quite clearly can’t escape his past even whilst working to help people stay away from the gangster life style. Nothing seems straight forward in Hands Up and you will be left wondering what’s coming next.