Al Engel had worked his way up to being Nick Rovito’s right-hand man, near the top of the syndicate. And this was a delicate job that Rovito had given him: retrieving a very important jacket, loaded with heroin, from the fresh grave of the drug mule who was accidentally buried wearing it.
Rovito ordered Engel to go to the grave in the early hours of the morning, dig up the coffin, and get back the suit - plus kill two birds with one stone (so to speak) and whack the guy who would help with the digging. There was just one problem (at least - just one to begin with): It turned out the grave was empty. Suddenly Engel was the one finding himself “in deep”.
Busy Body is early Westlake, as he was mastering the genre he would become known for: the comic caper.
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Fun Fun Fun
- James Guseilo
Comic criminal caper
I'm a late convert to Westlake's subtle comic charms. I read a fair bit of crime and have read plenty of Westlake's alter ego, Richard Stark. I've only started to get into his comic capers in the last few years and realise that their is much gold here too. I like the whiny, almost apologetic, mobster hero and the narrator Brian Holsopple is a good choice to voice his thoughts.
I wanted to know what happened next. Westlake is an easy listen for sure.
Westlake introduces plenty of oddball characters and potential "guilty parties" throughout so it's really just a mix-up of them all.
This title is a stand alone so you won't need to read something else to get the running gags. I'd recommend it if you are a fan of Lawrence Block, Chester Himes, or even someone like George MacDonald Fraser's Flashman series.