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This is one of the books in the "Burglar Who..." series, by Lawrence Block. The adventures of Bernie Rhodenbarr, a burglar who prays to St. Dismas (the saint of thieves) and seems so likeable that it's hard not to hope he will succeed. He has the front of being a used bookstore owner, and in some ways Block lets the reader think that he would like to go straight for good, but his addiction to robbing people is so powerful, he seems always to get tantalized into burgling yet another place. Good thing there is no 12 step group for burglars, or we would be deprived of these delightful books. Actually, these books are so cleverly written, that he does wind up being the "good guy" most of the time, because even as he is busy burgling and quickly being suspected by the police--even spending time in jail occasionally-- he is also working quietly to solve the crimes that other people are committing as well (usually murders).
In this book, he & his friend Carolyn have gone to a house with intent to burgle, only to discover that someone was there before them. They find several things to take with them, but leave, believing they missed out on an opportunity--not knowing that a murder occurs there. They visit a kind old man, who seems to be a "gentleman fence," a man whom Bernie seems to genuinely like and so makes a gift of an old book of writings by Spinoza before getting down to the transaction of selling his loot. All that happens after this is typical Bernie, with the on-going cast of characters who people the stories, including the semi-crooked cop, Ray (who both wants to arrest Bernie, but tends to help him as well).
This is a good story, a good listen. My only small criticism (and it is small) is that the narrator does not do a good job of women' voices. He tends to lower his voice tone (rather than raise it) for Bernie's friend Carolyn, which can leave the listener confused. This entire series is really a fun listen. For some reason I have been listening to them out of order, and it doesn't seem to hurt anything (there is rarely mention of what took place in earlier books). Recommend!
7 of 8 people found this review helpful
bernie-rodenbarr, murder, amateur-sleuth, law-enforcement, nyc, humor, snarky
Bernie Rhodenbarr does it again. He and Carolyn become the second thief and he gets blamed for the burglary as well as a murder. They take the loot to a fence he knows well,and then that man gets murdered. While Bernie works to find out who did the murders, we get a nice lesson in numismatics. The solution is presented with a flourish, as usual.
Richard Ferrone is the narrator and is fantastic.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful