Friday, November 9, 2012

'The Cartel 4' by Ashley & JaQuavis

Well... after nearly two and a half years we finally get the next installment in 'The Cartel' series. Was the wait worth it?  All in all I would have to say yes.  Ashley & JaQuavis bring us back to Miami, back to the Islands, back to the red blood, and back to the BAD blood. Remember 'New Jack City' "Am I my brother’s keeper"?  Keep that in mind as you read this book. 

I've never been one to be a stickler for reading series books in order. But for this one you better!  Do it or you'll be more lost than Kim Kardashian at an abstinence rally. Unfortunately that is where a slight problem arose.  The biggest drawback for a reader in waiting so long between books is remembering characters and plots. 

The biggest drawback for an author waiting so long between books is hoping your readers will remember characters and plots.  Two and a half years is a long time for authors to wait between books, and when they return they must ask themselves a few questions; 1. Should I tell the story and let the reader be responsible for catching up? 2. Should I tell the story and give just enough back story? 3. Should I tell the story and give too much backstory? 'The Cartel 4' is #3.  But 'The Cartel 4' is also 'The Cartel'. Let me explain... When Ashley & JaQuavis are grinding away with the current story this book is fire!  When they slow down to fill us in with back story, it is not.
In spite of that, the strength of their storytelling and the strength of the story is enough to make this one worthy of carrying the 'Cartel' name.  All the main characters are back... well… the ones that haven't been shot, stabbed, raped, kidnapped, tortured, brainwashed, and even then... Aside from the great story these two tell I must admit that what also draws me is the drama and the sheer brutality of the streets.
If war is hell, then civil war must be hell pissed.  The Cartel is fractured, the streets are up for grabs, the brothers are doing their Cain and Able dance, and someone will pay. Who and how much are told within these pages. I did enjoy this book and Ashley & JaQuavis have proven once again that they are a very talented and very relevant writing duo.

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