Monday, January 15, 2018

Robert John Estko Presents Evil, Be Gone, a Fascinating Political Thriller

Comfortable that the house was secure and Susan would keep close tabs on Josh, John popped a John Mellenkamp cassette in the tape player, put on the earphones, and climbed on the treadmill. Five miles of walking and running were a lot easier to the beat of Mellenkamp's heartland ballads. Having finished her favorite talk show, Susan had moved on to the kitchen to prepare dinner. She quickly discovered that her boys, John and Josh, had already polished off the gallon of milk she had just picked up yesterday. A quick car ride around the corner to the market would only have her out of the house for a couple of minutes, so without going to the door of the gym, she shouted down the hall to Lilly that she'd be right back. He never heard her.
He also never heard the carpet cleaner's van pull into the driveway the moment Susan's car was out of sight. This particular carpet cleaner was more adept at picking locks than he was at steamcleaning. And as Lilly broke into a run of the treadmill, packing himself to the tempo of the "Coug's" guitar 

in "Hurt So Good," the man made his way down the hall to Josh's room. As he walked, he poured a small amount of liquid into a heavy handkerchief. Josh had no opportunity to protest this time as the handkerchief was placed over his mouth and nose. The carpet cleaner turned kidnapper then rolled the unconscious child up in the five-foot by eight-foot rug that covered the middle of the hardwood floor in Josh's room, threw the rolled run on his shoulder and walked out of the house. The van was a block down the street before Susan drove up the driveway with a fresh gallon of milk.
About forty minutes later a sweat-drenched John Lelankevitch walked into the kitchen where Susan was busy preparing dinner. "What's cookin', good lookin'?"
"How's roast beef and mashed potatoes sound, handsome? You better grab a shower quick or Josh will eat all the mashed potatoes and gravy."
"Where is the little guy anyway?"
"Well, when I ran out, he was in his room zapping bad guys or monsters or whatever it is he zaps on that electronic game he plays."
Surprised, Lilly barked, "When you ran out! Where'd you go?"
"I told you...I ran to the store to get some milk for the mashed potatoes...I told you when I left," Susan snapped back.
Lilly was already running down the hall towards Josh's room and didn't hear her finish her remark. "Josh!" he yelled as he ran. Grabbing the doorjamb, with a hand on each side, he leaned into the room. "Josh!" he yelled again.
"Oh My God!" came the cry from Susan who had quickly been on Lilly's heels when he took off and now stood behind him at the doorway to their young son's room. "John...John...where is he?"
Noticing that the rug was gone, Lelankevitch said, "They came back. They got him this time."
Susan just crumpled to the floor.
Lilly didn't even move to console her. Still staring into Josh's room, he simple said with resolve in his voice. "They won't hurt him. They want me. And I'm going to give them what they spades."

Evil, Be Gone
By Robert Estko

"Evil, Be Gone"

The small intruder, without thinking, lunged into the darkness toward what he believed to be the attacker, only to find his feet lifted from the deck, by a hand clutching his throat just beneath the jaw-line. Assisted by his captive's momentum, John "Lilly" Lelankevitch, carried the man through an arc in the air to a crashing collision with the living room's hardwood floor, still gripping the throat of what was now more rag doll than man. Clenching the hand that encircled the little man's larynx into a fist, Lelankevitch began his mental journey back to an earlier time, and between the popping sound and the gurgling of blood in his enemy's throat, he said, "Evil, be gone," under his breath.

This book reminded me a little of the "Taken" series so I
immediately thought of Liam Neeson as the perfect star to play John Lelankevitch. A Vietnam vet who learned how to kill for his country, first had to deal with the issue of murder. He realized that if he could actually see evil intent, he was able to move decisively to take the enemy down... And he became a master, but always, always, he said the mantra, "Evil, Be Gone..." to ensure he could actually kill the individual.

He had continued somewhat in the same business when he was hired into a firm where he had been working, in retirement for ten years... But there were people who remembered his expertise and were now calling upon him to do jobs that were not exactly clear in the evil versus good decision.

This time they wanted him to kill an innocent... And to ensure he did it, they kidnapped his son. Fortunately their first attempt failed, but on their second try, they were successful. In dealing with the safety of his family, John was forced to share his background activities with his wife, who had known him only as a beloved husband and father. Now he had to introduce her to danger, by moving her into a safe house while he dealt with the kidnappers...

The startling plot of who is to be murdered was a new twist to the presidential election process and proved to be an excellent look at both the personal life of potential candidates, as well as what it means to be part of a "political family" where the power of the office overrides anything else.

The portrayal of Lilly Lelankevitch was both as a hero in his
decisions to fight evil, but most telling was that, once he had left that life and was asked to go back, he had to work himself into the mind-frame of once again being a killer... Still, could he kill an innocent?

At a time when turmoil in Washington is in the daily news, Robert John Estko has written a plausible and exciting thriller. His character is "hero-stuff" with his love of family and country overriding commands given, when they are "evil" orders... It is a thoughtful, intriguing concept while at the same time an exciting "good fighting evil" page-turner... It is highly recommended for your consideration...


Robert Estko grew up on Chicago's south side before winning a Marine Corps scholarship. Later in Chicago, he became a social worker. A three-month odyssey ended when he ran out of gas and money in Northern California in 1978. Today, he is a lawyer and corporate executive in Silicon Valley.

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