Book Review | Into Protection
Title: Into Protection
Author: Terry Chaudhuri
When I first received a copy of Into Protection by Terry Chaudhuri, I wasn’t sure what to think about the book. The cover of the book shows a man’s face, in profile and he is holding a gun. This photo, in black and white, is juxtaposed with orange and yellow flames that around the perimeter. I must admit I’d never seen cover art quite like this and I found myself really interested in learning more about the story inside and how this art related to it.
Into Protection is a novel that focuses on two characters – Derek and Jimmy. As the novel begins, Derek is a child and Jimmy is his best friend. Derek’s father works for the police force and is involved in some very challenging cases that involve things such as drugs and mobsters. Derek witnesses the death and destruction that can be caused by these things at a young age when he finds that that his father’s partner has been killed in a car explosion and then his own father is murdered. Derek vows to seek revenge for his father’s death. Derek’s best friend, Jimmy, is also privy to all of these events. As they grow older, Derek becomes a police officer and Jimmy gets a very special job working for the FBI. As fate would have it, Derek meets the wife of the mobster (Rebecca) he believes responsible for his father’s death and he falls in love with her. Derek wants happiness and believes tries to work with Rebecca to cause her husband’s demise so the two of them can live happily ever after.
There are some strange twists to this story. I think the biggest one is that Jimmy, when recruited by the FBI, learns that “Witness Protection” does mean protecting at all. He learns that the FBI utilizes witnesses then, instead of protecting them, takes them away and murders them! I must admit that this was THE most bizarre and laughable thing about this story! While I thought it was an interesting “what if” type of premise, realistically it is so far outside the range of possibilities that it made me laugh out loud! Logically speaking, what would happen if a convicted felon, put away by the testimony of someone in Witness Protection, appealed their case? The way this story is laid out, witnesses end their testimony, a guilty verdict is received and then get murdered right afterwards. Barring the fact that the whole idea of killing witnesses is a stretch, it really lacks credibility!
Truth be told, that is where the problem lies with Into Protection – the plot lacks credibility. The characters are two-dimensional and not particularly interesting (was Derek going to be able to save Rebecca at the end of the novel? I hate to admit it but I didn’t care if I’m being honest!). The plot definitely has points of interest (and, despite my comments above, I did think the whole “save some money at the FBI by killing off Witness Protection participants” was a creative and interesting idea) but they are few and far between.
I really hate to say it because I wanted to like this book, but it is boring! I think Into Protection has glimmers of interest but I wouldn’t recommend it. I actually thought it would work much better as a screenplay and perhaps that should be Terry Chaudhuri’s plan for it because it might be more successful than the novel.
*I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this novel.*