Book review: Pigeon-Blood Red by Ed Duncan

Author: Ed Duncan

Genre: Suspense, Crime Thriller

No. of pages: 238

Published by: Ed Duncan

Published on: 2nd September 2016

Format: Paperback

My rating: ★★★★/5

"Which is right? he asked himself. All good things come to those who wait or he who waits is lost?


Robert McDuffie is a businessman and a hardcore gambler who falls into the hands of Litvak, a vicious loan shark, when he is unable to pay him off. Robert knows that Litvak won't let him stay alive until and unless he gives back Litvak's money. Robert then steals a necklace with pigeon-blood red rubies which costs almost millions of dollars from Litvak and decides to use it as a bait to extract money from Litvak.

The cold-blooded Litvak unleashes his most trusted henchman Rico to bring back the necklace, and to kill Robert and whoever is associated with him. But Robert flees to Honolulu and involves his innocent and unknowing wife Evelyn with his crimes. Rico is able to hunt down the locations of Robert and his lover (who is also Robert's accomplice in the theft) but Evelyn and her friend from college, Paul (whom she meets by coincidence in Honolulu) are able to flee from the clutches of Robert.

Thus begins a spine chilling race for survival that takes Evelyn and Paul from Honolulu to Chicago and into the dangerous trap of Litvak. Read this book to find out how Litvak takes his revenge on Robert and how Rico risks the life of his love to take on Evelyn and Paul.

About the characters:

Pigeon-Blood Red has a wide variety of well defined characters. While Rico is a 'killer with a conscience', he is also a shrewd and calculative hitman.
Robert is a failed  businessman and an unfaithful and greedy husband. Robert's wife Evelyn is a strong headed woman who has tried hard on multiple occasions to make up her relationship with her husband but failed every time.
Paul Elliott is both Robert and Evelyn's college mate, and is a lawyer. When it comes to protecting Evelyn, Paul even risks his life to protect her.

Writing style:

Ed Duncan has written a pure entertainer. His way of telling the story is to the point, without deviating much from the plot. He gives a brief background to each of the characters which blends excellently with the story and helps the readers understand his characters better.

About the book:

Pigeon-Blood Red is a fast paced crime thriller. This book is a total page turner and did not let me stop until I reached the very end. From the first page to the last page, it has elements of surprise and twists. As the story develops, the intensity of suspense increases. This is one of those books that will make you think 'what happens in the end'. As I already mentioned before, the background story of the characters will make you either empathise or hate them. A little less than 250 pages, Pigeon-Blood Red is a fast read (I completed it within a couple of days) and will surely keep you guessing about the end.

About the author:

Ed Duncan is a graduate of Oberlin College and Northwestern University Law School. For many years he was a practicing lawyer and a partner at a national law firm headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. Before retiring in 2012 he wrote a respected legal treatise entitled "Ohio Insurance Coverage" which he updated annually from 2008 through 2012. Ed lives outside Cleveland and is at work on the second novel in the trilogy which began with "Pigeon-Blood Red."

I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange of an honest and unbiased review. 


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