Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Review of Callahan's Con

Book 37. Callahan’s Con, by Spider Robinson. Unabridged audio.

This is the last novel in the series, and was a fitting finale. As I have written before, it started as humorous short story collections, and slowly grew into a novel series involving time-travel, alien invasions, crazy characters, and lots of bad puns.

Having moved from Long Island, Jake and his crew have set up shop in Key West, and find themselves up against a pair of formidable antagonists: a third-rate mobster operating a protection racket, and an officious bureaucrat investigating the home life of Jake’s mega-genius daughter. Faced with these issues, the group decides to avoid the bureaucrat for as long as possible, and run the greatest con in the history of time travel on the mobster.

These new characters gave Robinson a chance to do what he does best, which is to put absurd characters in absurd scenarios, while also telling compelling science fiction stories. As is not unexpected for a series finale, the plot involved various characters in mortal peril. And after the team pulled together again to save each other, one was struck down by the most boring of causes: disease.

Robinson did a fine job putting a finishing touch on the series. The characters are given a final adventure worthy of their powers and personalities, and the characters’ sad farewell to one of their own becomes our sad farewell to all of them.

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