How can you not want to root for a hero with the name Tucker Candle. It’s like an 80’s movie star tinged with and an EMO kid. Which, interestingly enough, is just what Tucker Candle is in Jim Heskett’s newly released “Wounded Animals,” Book 1 in the Whistleblower Trilogy.
What is a seemingly alcohol induced slight of hand after a particularly heinous day at an unfulfilling job, Tucker Candle finds himself in quite the predicament. This unexpected situation not only has Candle’s head literally spinning with its repercussions, but also completely changes his life. Literally, in a split second, Candle moves from a rather average life to one that is comprised of murder, missing persons, and other developments that have him questioning whether his encounter with a random stranger earlier on was not quite so random after all.
As Tucker’s life spirals into various scenes that would not be entirely out of place in a Martin Scorcese film, his distrust of authority, of close and distant family members, and above all, his friends, grows rampant. The momentum of the plot continues to build and build, garnering excitement from the reader who wants to know what the real deal is and what Candle may be hiding.
Tucker’s often hilarious and clumsy, causing him to become both strangely realistic and believable. Heskett’s ability to depict scenes with such rich details immerses the reader right in there with Tucker and his constant unfolding of truths and lies in his own life. Not one to mince words, Heskett masterfully creates a tale that moves along at a good clip. I couldn’t help but feel that Heskett dropped some inside jokes along the way in his story, which I think I got. Judo Sensei anyone?
Like the object that the protagonist shares his surname with, a candle may only create a little light, but in ‘Wounded Animals,’ its certainly enough for Tucker Candle to make the right decision and to glimpse the truth that lay before him.