In Elmore Leonard’s The Hunted, “crime fiction’s greatest living practitioner” (Washington Post) carries the action far from his usual Detroit, Miami, and Los Angeles milieus, all the way to the Middle East. There no lack of excitement and suspense—and the trademark Leonard dialogue—in this superior tale of a fugitive hiding under the radar in Israel, until a well-publicized Good Samaritan act attracts the unwanted attention of well-armed Motown mobsters who are now coming to get him.
This book was a departure for Elmore Leonard in terms of setting. It takes place in Israel which is a setting that he had not used in previous works. I got the sense that he spent some time there while I was reading this book. His descriptions of the country, its landmarks, and roads were very vivid. The plot of this book was also a bit of a departure. It centers on the efforts of a marine to protect a businessman that fled the United States after testifying against organized crime figures when the charges against them don’t stick. He uses an alias and is quite the playboy. While spending time with a woman in an Israeli hotel, he is photographed by a local newspaper when the hotel catches fire. This prompts the criminals to pursue him.
This book is engaging, but it, again, ends rather abruptly with a less than satisfying ending.
Leonard is the master, but the ending left me a bit cold and earned it just four out of five pizzas.