Since the layoffs, by Iain Levison

Since the Layoffs, by Iain Levison (book cover)

Since the layoffs, by Iain Levison, is not the type of books I usually read. I am usually much more into epic fantasy. I was offered this novel at Christmas however, barely two weeks after being laid off myself. Hence I knew a bit about how Jake could feel (although certainly not as much) and decided to give it a try. I am always curious about new books, they intrigue me, even though they do not necessarily belong to the literary genre of which I am most fond.

This is essentially the story of a desparate man who used to work at a factory in some small town. He is angry at the social system because he is unemployed, he owes money to a drug-dealer (because he is into gambling) and he has no way of earning enough money to both pay off his debts and live comfortably.

The thing is, one day, he is talking with a fellow who he has known for years, named Ken Gardocki. This fellow happens to be the business-man, or drug-dealer – depending on how you want to call it – to whom he owes several grands. So, as the conversation is going on, Ken offers Jake – the main character in our story – to pay him to murder his wife. He was far from imagining how zealous Jake would turn out to be, how mad he was at the world.

If you just got laid off, perhaps this book would appeal to you more than somebody else. It is cynical but, as always with cynism, it states some truths which one would rather ignore because they are tough to deal with. One would rather not know that society can be cruel, that people are more interested in making profits than in your actual well-being.

I ended up getting caught up by the story and the suspense, always wondering when he was going to get busted by the cops, or if he ever would be…