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Another Ralph the Rat Review! “A Bullet for Carlos” by Giacomo Giammatteo


Ralph the RatOK Ralph has made quite the splash here and I have requests that he do some more of my reviewing for crime dramas… but alas, he was to busy eating and terrorizing the cat today so I am going to try to address his ideas on the book myself… Plus in this novel we are not privy to a rat… well at least not the nibbling kind!

Oh don’t forget to play the game at the bottom of the post to be entered in the drawing for a copy of A Bullet for Carlos! Enjoy the review!

I am having a lovely time with my mystery and crime challenge and this is #10 out of 11 books and it is another winner!! This is my second novel by Giacomo Giammatteo and is book one in Blood Flows South. I could not put it down, just as it was with his first book. Murder Takes Time. When you buy the book and get ready to read I’ll give you fair warning, do not start reading it on a week night if you have work the next day because you will not be able to put it down. In fact you will find yourself tripping over the tree root on the path to the outhouse, instead of leaving it on the coffee table .. oh wait, that is me! You get the picture though right?

The action started off right at the beginning with the origin of our leading gal, Connie. Like Murder Takes Time, Connie is a product of the mob, as in she is family. Raised by her “Uncle Dominic” after her mother died she was exposed and privileged to the family lifestyle, but as it was with Frank Donovan (a character we are introduced to in Murder Takes Time and who is also in this book), she becomes a cop. Connie and her team have one of the greatest track records in drug busts and they were going to be taking down another group of drug dealers, except it goes south and Connie ended up the only one left alive and the drugs? They never surfaced… — Criminal Mystery #1 (yes you will need to be keeping count)

To keep Connie from being fried by IA those who believe in her and do not think she is a dirty cop transfer her to Homicide. She needs to be kept out of the limelight, especially since Uncle Dominic has made sure she cannot be buried is put on the front fold of all the papers in NYC. She knows she has to find out who set them up to clean her record so she can get back to life as usual, but it seems there are others who just want to see her buried and not just behind a desk. Now wait, that is just the first crime right? She is put desk duty and handed cold cases and happens to trip over a very brutal string of murders connected to a case in Houston TX. Great idea, send Connie down to get with the PD down there and get her even more out of their hair. So instead of having her career go even more south, she went south and the killer is still killing in Texas… — Criminal Mystery #2

While she is in Houston playing with the cowboy Texas bad ass cops, her Uncle is busy looking for who did this to “His Connie” and leaving a trail of mutilated Mexican drug runners in his wake. Down even further south is El Jabalí, (The Wild Boar) whose christened name is  Carlos. Ohhh can you figure out who the center of the target is? One of the meanest sociopaths running drugs out of Mexico. (and we get to see just how crazy he is!). And now we have… — Criminal Mystery #3

Oh btw, I have to ask you GG, does Dennis know you wrote him in as the bad guy? Poor Dennis! Shame on you G!

Each and every mystery is a race against time, any deviation from the path by anyone could take innocent and guilty lives and tear them apart. The story is complex, exciting, visceral, edgy and fun. Yes fun, because Italian mobsters are OVER the top but they not hold that place in the conventional descriptions of criminal groups… gangs, mobs.. pick your label. The Mexican cartel have their own conventional ideal and Carlos fits it to a tea. I found some of the Mexican euphemisms a bit to much over the top, but you can’t have everything be perfect. This was another awesome read for me and next time I read one of GG’s books I am going to make sure I am locked and loaded with lunch, dinner, popcorn and plenty of Diet Pepsi because I won’t want to take a break to make anything. Be forewarned there is a lot of language, a lot of violent scenes and some down home red neck sexist behavior! So yes, it is a BLAST!

4.5 bullets

(because poor Dennis is represented as a sociopathic drug lord)

(I recieved a review copy of the book in order for me to give a kick ass honest review. Trust me I have, and I never will not give an honest review, no matter what! Partners in Crime is one of he most reliable and trustworthy tour companies to work for and I am happy to be one of the team!)

Bullet for Carlos

A Bullet For Carlos (Blood Flows South)Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo

Detective Connie Giannelli’s life has been torn apart several times. First when her mother died and then years later when she found out her Uncle Dominic was in the mob. Her life is about to be shredded again, and this time it could destroy her.

Connie’s love of family and her badge are both threatened when an undercover drug bust leaves two cops dead and the drugs missing. Internal Affairs is looking for any excuse to take her badge, but she’s not worried about them finding the missing drugs—her secrets could prove to be far worse.

Now Connie’s racing against the clock to figure out who killed her partners and took the drugs—dirty cops or Uncle Dominic’s friends. And she has to do it before IA pins the whole damn thing on her.

                                                               Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo  Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo  Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo

Giacomo Giammatteo

Giacomo lives Texas now, but he grew up in Cleland Heights, a mixed ethnic neighborhood in Wilmington, Delaware that sat on the fringes of the Italian, Irish and Polish neighborhoods. The main characters of Friendship and Honor Series grew up in Cleland Heights and many of the scenes in the book were taken from real-life experiences.

Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo

He survived his transition to adulthood, but when his kids were young he left the Northeast and settled in Texas, where his wife suggested they get a few animals. Apparently he should have known better; they now have a full-blown animal sanctuary with rescues from all over. At last count they had 41 animals—12 dogs, a horse, a three-legged cat and 26 pigs.

Oh, and one crazy—and very large—wild boar, who takes walks with him every day and happens to also be his best buddy.

El Jabalí..aka Dennis

El Jabalí..aka Dennis

Since this is a bio some of you might wonder what I do. By day I am a headhunter, scouring the country for top talent to fill jobs in the biotech and medical device industry. In the evening I help my wife tend the animals, and at night—late at night—I turn into a writer.


Time to Win a Book!

For all those who have or have not read the book, the bad guy is Carlos whose drug lord name is El Jabalí, the boar. As you have read above, this is G’s walking buddy, and he is really a sweet looking boar. The reality of this is The Wild Boar is the nickname of a real drug-lord from Mexico. But the irony did not escape me, nor did it escape Ralph who totally digs Dennis. But what would you use for a nickname if you were in the mob? There was actually a guy called The Barbie? OK ya that sounds intimidating! Me? I found a fun little generator! So for a chance to win a book from the G man… let’s play


Enter your results below and get a chance to win a book! 

My mob name is KM the Cracker

 Giacomo’s? He may kill me but only his wife can say if this is true…

Big GG the Firehose

So join in and find out what your mob name is! One random brave soul will get entered into a giveaway!

Another Ralph the Rat Review! "A Bullet for Carlos" by Giacomo Giammatteo


  1. Phenomenal review!! Loved it!! Fantastic job. And I agree with you, Mr. Giacomo’s books are hard to put down!

  2. Thanks for the great review, Kriss. And Dennis thanks you, and says say hi to Ralph. I’ve had a problem with Dennis ever since he saw Training Day, with Denzel Washington. He liked seeing Denzel as the bad guy, and said he wanted to be a bad guy, hence the Carlos role. I imagine I’ll get Dennis back to the good side soon enough. Anyway, thanks a ton for hosting this, and sharing it with your readers. And good luck to everyone on winning the book.

  3. My mob name is “Katy Two-Boots”. I’d really like to know the story behind THAT one… LOL

  4. Nini the shadow is my mob name woohoo! fil’s is Tall fil beans

    • It took three tries to get a name that did not refer to a male. So RL the Lobster is my mob name. I like it because I dye my hair red!

  5. My mobster name is Slim Faye. Hmm…

  6. I have read a lot of great reviews on this book. My mob name would be Get’em Marg.

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