About the Book:
A Black father. A white father. Two murdered sons. A quest for vengeance.
Ike Randolph has been out of jail for fifteen years, with not so much as a speeding ticket in all that time. But a Black man with cops at the door knows to be afraid.
The last thing he expects to hear is that his son Isiah has been murdered, along with Isiah’s white husband, Derek. Ike had never fully accepted his son but is devastated by his loss.
Derek’s father Buddy Lee was almost as ashamed of Derek for being gay as Derek was ashamed of his father’s criminal record. Buddy Lee still has contacts in the underworld, though, and he wants to know who killed his boy.
Ike and Buddy Lee, two ex-cons with little else in common other than a criminal past and a love for their dead sons, band together in their desperate desire for revenge. In their quest to do better for their sons in death than they did in life, hardened men Ike and Buddy Lee will confront their own prejudices about their sons and each other, as they rain down vengeance upon those who hurt their boys.
Provocative and fast-paced, S. A. Cosby’s Razorblade Tears is a story of bloody retribution, heartfelt change – and maybe even redemption.
This is a noir crime fiction about prejudice, revenge and ultimately, redemption. Violence is very much a part of this story but amazingly, the author also writes some very funny comedic moments, mostly from the mouth of one of the main characters, Buddy Lee.
Ike Randolph and Buddy Lee Jenkins are two antiheroes whose two sons were married to each other, and also died violent deaths. The two grieving fathers band together to find their sons’ killers and to exact revenge. Ike, a Black man and convicted felon, grieves the son he lost and never really knew. Buddy Lee was never much a part of his son’s life either, but also wants revenge. How sad that the two sons the fathers never really knew lived rich, full lives without the support of their parents.
“But time was a river made of quicksilver. It slipped through his grasp even as it enveloped him. Twenty became forty. Winter became spring, and before he knew it he was an old man burying his son and wondering where in the hell that river had taken him.”
Ike and Buddy Lee don’t have very much in common except for their grief. Ike experiences racial prejudice constantly but sadly would never accept his own son based on his own prejudice and hate. Buddy Lee and his former wife also turned their backs on their son, too. The story is filled with sometimes brutal, non-stop action that reminded me of a Quentin Tarantino film.
When the local police are slow to move forward on the case, Ike and Buddy Lee join together to find the killers. The book literally rockets forward with one shocking scene after another, and also has many unforgettable characters like the mysterious Tangerine, who might hold the key to the killers’ identities. This is an emotional and thrilling book, and the narrator Adam Lazare-White is AMAZING. With his deep, melodious voice, he turned this stunning crime noir into an unforgettable listening experience.
There are no perfect characters here and both Ike and Buddy Lee are deeply flawed men who only want to seek some form of absolution for their past behavior toward their sons. They are trying to be better men and love their grandchild. ‘Razorblade Tears’ is unlike any thriller I have read and it combines perfect character development, plot and thought-provoking discussion. Highly recommend!
“Folks like to talk about revenge like it’s a righteous thing but it’s just hate in a nicer suit.”