The Goodbye Man is one of those books that makes you think about heinous crimes and vigilantes. As I read about Jack Steele who takes justice into his own hands I thought back to all of the Charles Bronson movies I watched when I was younger. I understood why he exacted justice, yet I did not completely agree with it. If we let vigilantes rule the world we go back to the beginnings of the Old West days when people exacted their own justice. In the book, I understood the Jack’s feelings. Let me give you a personal example. I graduated with a young man who was nice looking, extremely polite, expected to marry his high school sweetheart and become a success. He did all of that. His wife, also a girl I graduated with was best friends with a family with whom I attended church. This young couple often babysat the niece of this family. When this man’s marriage began to fail, his wife temporarily moved in with her friends. Out of anger and revenge toward his wife, he picked the young girl he had babysat up on her way home from school. No problem for her, no fear, she had been picked up by him before. This six foot two, 280-pound man raped, murdered and cut up the body of this sweet little seven year old. I was devastated when she went missing as we had lost a young girl who lived at the end of our street the year before. They hunted for her. The parents who were in the Bahamas trying to reconcile their own marriage flew back. A month later hunters found the girls body. When the young man was convicted, I danced around the room. We had the electric chair at that time and I watched for years as he sat on death row waiting his turn. When it finally came, I was glued to the TV because I wanted to know it was over. The funny thing is, I was not thrilled like I figured I would be. My heart ached because another family had lost a child. True it was due to his own fault. The young girl’s family had met with this young man on several occasions and let him know that they forgave him. They were vilified for doing such a thing. As a Christian, I understood why they did so, and understood why I felt so bad about my own feelings. Do I believe in capital punishment? You bet I do. However, I have known of several cases where people were wrongfully convicted, served time and released and then the courts system comes back and says, “Oh yeah, we found the guilty party but didn’t have enough evidence at the time and someone had to pay.” That was a true story. That person’s life was ruined. His reputation was ruined. It didn’t matter what the law said, because they had been convicted, so there had to have been some element of truth to the matter. On the other hand, I have seen people go free on technicalities or lack of good evidence only to repeat the same offence. We all want to see justice done. Now that I’ve gotten off my high horse let me finish my review. The characters were well fleshed out and it was an on the edge of your seat read for me. It kept emotions flowing throughout. I did enjoy it for that very reason. I enjoyed it because I know the difference between fiction and reality. I can justify reading something like this because we all feel like Jack Steele at times. It gives us an out for those feelings. Would I recommend this book? You had better believe it. If I didn’t like crime novels like this, I wouldn’t read them in the first place. This was a very good book and I will definitely read anything else this author writes. I highly recommended it.