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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘The Last Straw’
by Ed Duncan
Book Beginnings
First Lines

image of a woman sat reading by an open window - caption reads 'will these first few lines capture our imagination' - used as the image for Book Beginnings / First Lines, posts


This is a meme for all you ‘First Page Browsers’

Cover image of the book 'The Last Straw' by author Ed Duncan

THE LAST STRAW‘ (Pigeon – Blood Red – Book #2) by ED DUNCAN



“Perry Brumfield unzipped his pants as he entered the bedroom and strode confidently toward the queen size bed.

He was in his early thirties with neatly trimmed hair that didn’t quite cover the top of his ears. He was dressed in a black three-piece pinstripe suit with a yellow polka dot tie, and he wore black wingtip shoes that were so highly buffed you could almost see your face in them.

‘Hey, I need the money up front,’ Jean said, standing in the doorway behind him, her right hand on her hip and her left hand outstretched, palm up. She wore a short green, figure-hugging skirt with matching high heels and a white silk blouse. Her flowing red hair descended well below her shoulders.

He hesitated and turned toward her. He had had a few drinks and for the first time that evening, it started to show, or maybe she hadn’t been paying close enough attention until now. She usually took clients she didn’t know to hotel rooms, and she had initially balked at letting him come to her apartment, which was reserved for men she could trust (insofar as that was ever completely possible). But her girlfriend had vouched for this man and she had relented.

‘What if I don’t feel like it?’ he asked, smiling broadly.

Maybe he’s just playing around, Jean thought. He seemed harmless enough and, based on what her friend had told her, coupled with the way he dressed, money was clearly not something he had to worry about. ‘I’m sorry, sweetie,’ she said, smiling back at him, ‘but those are the house rules.’

His smile evaporated and turned into an angry snarl. ‘I said I don’t feel like it.’

‘Shit’, Jean said under her breath …”

Cover image of the book 'The Last Straw' by author Ed Duncan

So, you have taken a look, would you read the book?

Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Just to give you an extra helping hand, here is the book’s premise …

Updated image of author Ed Duncan April 2020

THE LAST STRAW‘ (Pigeon – Blood Red – Book #2) by ED DUNCAN

Cover image of the book 'The Last Straw' by author Ed DuncanWhen a teenage girl witnesses a carjacking gone bad, she is marked for death by a crime boss with no apparent motive. A black lawyer and a white enforcer with an unlikely history forge an uneasy alliance to protect the girl from a hit man with an agenda of his own.

After they find out that the crime boss is the father of the black teenage carjacker, Paul Elliott – lawyer and close friend of the witness’s family – begins counseling them.

As the long-simmering feud between Rico and John D’Angelo reaches boiling point, bodies start to pile up in rapid succession… and old scores will be settled.

A picture button for book beginnings at Rose City Reader

You might also like to visit Gilion, over at ‘Rose City Reader‘, where you can share links to the book beginnings from her own reading schedule and that of many of our fellow bloggers.

There are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered

Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Anne,

      This is a great trilogy which the author has also written screenplays for. It would make either an excellent TV series, or a main feature film.

      Either way, I need him to keep on writing more adventures for ‘Rico’, as he is such an addictive character.

      Thanks for stopping by and have a good weekend 🙂

    • Hi Anca,

      Have no fear, right after these opening lines, the storyline changes completely and the rest of the book is a regular ‘gangster’ fiction novel of excellent quality, if you don’t mind a little violence, although nothing too explicit!

      It wouldn’t do if we all enjoyed reading the same genres, as we would never exchange ideas and uncover that hidden little gem of a book, that we just can’t live without adding to our TBR mountains 🙂

      • You have no idea how often I push the ‘enter’ button, just as I spot a mistake, or realise I have missed something out of a post or comment. I’m on my way to check out the book now 🙂

    • Hi Lorraine,

      This series of books has an eclectic mix of central characters, who are all well defined and developed by the author. The narrative and dialogue is crisp and very descriptive, so how you feel after reading just those first few lines, is what both this and the other books in the series have to offer all the way through.

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment. I always look forward to our exchanges of thoughts about the books we are reading 🙂

  • This one certainly starts off with a bang! I started worrying for her when she made the statement about not usually bringing clients home… and it only got worse!

    • Hi Kelly,

      I’m afraid that things do get worse before they get better, but not without a fight, as Jean is one feisty lady! She also has her own guardian angel living close by, who turns out to be worth more than his weight in gold – And then there is Rico! He is a seasoned hit man for the highest bidder and Jean’s sometimes boyfriend. You can imagine what his reaction was, I’m sure!

      I still can’t believe that this trilogy is finished, as I have really grown to like and respect Rico and the three other main protagonists, who author Ed Duncan has manged to make so ‘real’ for me!

      Thanks for stopping by and have a good weekend 🙂

    • Hi Konna,

      This trilogy has so far been non-stop action, and although each book works perfectly well as a stand alone story, as the backstory is explained quite clearly throughout, if you had read book #1 in the series, then these opening lines would be perfectly in context.

      If you think you might enjoy a good ‘gangland’ thriller series, then I can definitely recommend these books 🙂

    • Hi Veronica,

      I’m afraid that my reading is far ahead of my posting and reviewing right now, although for me that is unusual, so I already know what happens in book #3.

      I am already lobbying author Ed Duncan to continue the series and I really think there should be a television or film spin-off, especially as Ed has already written three screenplays to reflect each of the books.

      You won’t be disappointed!!! 🙂

Written by Yvonne