‘Roll Call’ by Glenn Langohr is based on true events – the author is the character B.J. You’ve got convicted drug dealers, dodgy cops and detectives, abusive parents, shady characters and they’re all dealing with each other – throughout the book you constantly wonder who the good guys are – as it’s not immediately obvious.
There’s a lot of people in this book (which is where I struggled a bit, as so many people became part of the story and I do get muddled quite easily when there’s too many people), but it did end up straightforward enough to follow as the book progressed. In some ways I was reminded of the flow of films like Pulp Fiction – lots of people with their own stories, whose stories met at some point and became part of the bigger story before they move elsewhere.
The story starts with various bits of background on the main characters and what brought them to where they are. As I said before, I struggled a little, if only to keep on top of all the names – but the story kept me reading, and I figured I’d work it out as things progressed, which I kind of did.
The book itself? It is a fight for survival – and how B.J gets through the prison system (and drug problems) and tries to rebuild his life – are there happy endings? I’m not entirely sure. Is there progress? I’d say absolutely so. What happens next? I’ll be getting the next book to find out as it finishes where things seem to be progressing.
You spend a lot of the book thinking you know who the bad guys are, to actually find they’re the good ones fighting to get out of the mess they’re in – and that’s what I liked about the book – you don’t know what to expect.
One to read? Definitely. I’m already on my second read, if only to get the many characters straight in my head!
Glenn Langohr’s other books include: Upon Release (Roll Call Volume 2), Race Riots (Prison Killers Book 1), Lock Up Diaries (Prison Killers Book 2), Gladiator (Prison Killers Book 3) and Underdog (Prison Killers Book 4)