Reviewed by Dale Lewis
Protection for Hire by Camy Tang
"Asian culture including new terminology, foods and martial arts is at the forefront of this suspense."
One fateful night, Tessa Lancaster lands in prison for a crime she didn’t commit. She chooses to take the fall as a Japanese Mafia enforcer in her uncle Teruo’s gang. Released seven years later, she's out on parole and looking to change her life as she is now a Christian.
Thrust into protecting an abused wealthy socialite and her son, trying to move ahead with her family while simultaneously convincing her Uncle she will not go back to her old life, leaves Tessa juggling and struggling three months after her release. New revelations emerge and circumstances conspire to push Protection for Hire into non-stop action.
It takes a few pages to get into this novel. The prologue could have oozed more tension from the beginning. Like a PG description of an R-rated event, the first pages help by simply providing the background for Tessa's transforming faith.
Tessa is certainly not squeaky clean. She’s bred with a hard edge yet is also authentically vulnerable. She is a mixture of Agent Ziva David of NCIS, Agent Annie Walker of Covert Affairs and the young lady played by Hillary Swank in The Next Karate Kid.
Asian culture including new terminology, foods and martial arts is at the forefront of this suspense. The family dynamics between Tessa, her sister Alicia and mother are definitely believable and at times, quite humorous.
I wasn’t too impressed with the novel title, desiring a more inviting description with the not-so-obvious statement of fact. It will work as a series title but left a lot to desire for the first book.
The reader shouldn’t expect a happily ever after life for Tessa. Her life is a tad too complicated for that scenario! The conclusion will leave you eagerly anticipating Tessa’s next adventure.
This was my first read of a Camy Tang novel. I wouldn’t hesitate in reading another story from her. Hopefully, I won’t have to wait too long!Dale Lewis now mans the front desk at the EFCA (The Evangelical Free Church of America) National Office in Minneapolis, MN. He was the graphic designer/pre-press production artist for over twelve years before being asked to step into this new role. Prior to that, he was the publications manager at his alma mater, Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN in the public relations office as well as the adviser to the college’s yearbook. He's a director/actor/writer for the Hope Church (Oakdale, MN) adult drama worship team and was the senior editor of the church newsletter. He's also written two collections of poetry, “Whispers of Assurance” and “On Life: Constant Communion Without Ceasing” as well as a devotional entitled “Eternal Education.” He and his family live in Oakdale, Minnesota.