Category Archives: Greg Hickey

Review: Parabellum by Greg Hickey

Title: Parabellum by Greg Hickey
Publisher: Indie
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 356 pages
Book Rating: C+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by the Author


Why does this keep happening?

“A vivid, harrowing journey.” – Jenny Milchman, Mary Higgins Clark Award-winning author of Cover of Snow

A mass shooting at a Chicago beach leaves several dead and dozens injured. In the year before the crime, four individuals emerge as possible suspects.

An apathetic computer programmer.
An ex-college athlete with a history of hits to the head.
An Army veteran turned Chicago cop.
A despondent high school student.

One of them is the shooter. Discover who and why.

Parabellum is taut, slow-burning crime fiction at its best. And it’s a great deal more than that.” – Paul Flower, author of The Great American Cheese War

If you like nuanced literary crime fiction that explores the depths of the human psyche, you’ll love Greg Hickey’s compelling and unforgettable novel.

Buy Parabellum today and begin a story you won’t be able to put down.


Parabellum by Greg Hickey is a dark yet intriguing mystery.

Opening in the aftermath of a horrific mass shooting at a Chicago beach, the time period then shifts to a year before the incident. The story then follows four people who might have been the shooter.  Which of these troubled individuals is responisible for such a senseless act of violence?

The ex-college athlete is struggling in the aftermath of a series of concussions that occurred over a several years.  The athlete emerges from the final injury with on-going symptoms that often plague people who experience repetitive brain trauma (typically athletes). Following a deep depression, yet now attempting college classes again, is there any type of normal future open to this former athlete?

The ex-soldier dropped out of college to join the military not long after the September 11th terror attack.  After several tours of duty, the former soldier briefly returns to college but decides not to continue. After a bit of aimlessness, the ex-soldier is now a Chicago cop who is unexpectedly dealing with delayed onset PTSD.  Relying on alcohol to help cope, the cop has no issues on the job. It is off-duty hours that are becoming troublesome due to increasingly violent outbursts.

The high school student is depressed and struggling with fitting in. With one best friend, the student has navigated through the different grades without ever quite finding a place. The troubles do not ease over the summer break due to being sent to summer camps. Anti-depressants are helpful but will the medication help overcome feeling inadequate?

The programmer is intelligent yet gets bored easily. After graduating college, finding a job and moving to downtown Chicago, the programmer is a loner who rarely visits family. The programmer and a co-worker are assigned to work on a project together.  Arrogant and somewhat contemptuous of others, what will happen when the programmer reveals the secret of their success?

Parabellum is an engaging novel that is sometimes a little slow-paced.  The characters are interesting but with a couple of exceptions, a little hard to relate to or get to know.  The storyline is unique with plenty of tension. The switch to the day of the shooting is abrupt and somewhat jarring. With plenty of suspense, Greg Hickey brings this clever novel to a dramatic, heartrending conclusion.

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Filed under Contemporary, Greg Hickey, Mystery, Parabellum, Rated C+, Review