Verdict: An action-packed page-turner, U.S. VS WELKNER offers a creative twist for suspense aficionados.
Siblings take gambling to a whole new level when they realize they can use a time advanced satellite system to make mega bucks.
Rick Welkner appears to be a real loser. A crass underachieving Las Vegas car salesman, Rick also has gambling issues and is in debt big time. But after one particular run-in with a loan shark, Rick discovers a dying man who leaves him with a key and obscure instructions to a storage unit. Rick’s computer-wiz brother Brian checks out its contents and discovers a time-advanced satellite system. Their sister Angel eventually gets involved, and the siblings together with a couple friends use the technology via gambling to produce a huge financial windfall. All seems to go well accruing millions until the group not only finds out that they are under surveillance, but also learn the dark truth behind the satellite technology.
Hayes keeps readers on the edge of their seats in his unique debut thriller. Centering much of his plot in Las Vegas, Hayes creates a tight and well-developed cast that is surrounded by a mix of downright malevolent and unpredictable characters. Key to Hayes’ literary skill is the way he confuses his audience by shining a multi-hued light on his modest principal cast, in particular the siblings. Although they are engaging in illegal dealings, readers may feel a sense of compassion toward the siblings who are desperately trying to keep their heads above water after the death of their mother. And that is only the beginning as Hayes persistently introduces various characters with capricious personas as his plot unfolds.
Keeping his third person narrative continually moving, Hayes very guardedly weaves in his varied personas from one un-hackneyed scene to another while alternating character scenes that are lightly punctuated with black comedy.
An action-packed page-turner, U.S. VS WELKNER offers a creative twist for suspense aficionados.