With all the grit and barely veiled violence of The Godfather, Live By Night is another masterful example of the brooding gangster novel. Lehane's vivid cast of characters are utterly believable and his plot is as complex as it is thrilling.
Joe Coughlin is 19 when he meets Emma Gould. A small-time thief in 1920s Boston, he is told to cuff her while his accomplices raid the casino she works for. But Joe falls in love with Emma - and his life changes forever.
That meeting is the beginning of Joe's journey to becoming one of the nation's most feared and respected gangsters. It is a journey beset by violence, double-crossing, drama, and pain. And it is a journey into the soul of prohibition-era America....
A powerful, deeply moving novel, Live by Night is a tour-de-force by Dennis Lehane, writer on The Wire and author of modern classics such as Shutter Island, Gone, Baby, Gone and The Given Day.
©2012 Dennis Lehane (P)2012 Isis Publishing Ltd.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By AWH on 23-12-12

One of my favourites of 2012

I really enjoy Dennis Lehane novels - I dont think Ive read (or listened to) one that I haven't thoroughly enjoyed, This was no exception - brilliantly well written plotted and read. Its hard to say more without veering into spoiler territory but this was one of my favourite novels of 2012 and is highly recommended.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By holden on 16-04-17

simply brilliant book narrated perfectly

I didn't realise how good Dennis lehane was until this month I plenty of good reading to look forward too. plus. well done audible it had tears laughter, violence and incredible characters

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Michael on 16-04-17


Nothing new to the genre but well constructed novel. The violence is measured and action not unbelievable. The characters you can warm to but the book feels like one big 'penny dreadful'. I just felt I knew what was going to happen next. If you want this book, I think it best to listen to it rather than buy a copy and read it 'old school' as Adam Sims does an excellent job narrating the story.

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4 out of 5 stars
By antonio on 14-03-15

A tough gangster story by a great writer

The novel follows the criminal career path of Joe Coughlin, one of the sons of a corrupt police officer described in Lehane’s prior book “The Given Day” (which have not YET read).
It’s a though gangster story with likable and authentic characters, an engaging plot, witty and realistic dialogue and moments of real suspense alternated with times of reflection and observation of Florida and Cuba in the prohibition times. A thoroughly thrilling and satisfying read in every way.
If you know Dennis Lehane , this is a book at par with the prior ones ; if you do not, here is an excellent opportunity to discover a great writer !

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