Winner of multiple Edgar and Shamus Awards, Lawrence Block keeps fans guessing to the end with his rollicking Bernie Rhodenbarr mysteries. In this diverting caper, full-time bookstore owner and part-time burglar Bernie tries to do the right thing for a new friend, only to find himself accused of some terrible wrongs. All Bernie plans to do is steal some letters. A New York City literary agent is auctioning off her personal correspondence with enigmatic writer Gully Fairborn. Gully's attractive ex-girlfriend has asked Bernie to swipe the letters so she can return them to her old heartthrob. But when Bernie breaks in, the letters are missing, and the literary agent is in bed with no hope of waking up. With the police watching him very closely, Bernie relies on jiggers of rye and Caroline, his lesbian best friend, to sharpen his deductive skills and find the killer. Narrator Richard Ferrone expertly guides you on a laugh-filled journey through the twists and turns of the clever plot.
©1999 Lawrence Block; (P)2000 Recorded Books
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By F. Hayek on 24-06-09


Since I got introduced to L. Block's work in "The burglar who painted like Mondrian" and can't get enough. This is a delightful episode in the series about Bernard Rhodenbarr, an "admitted" burglar and reluctant detective. I found wonderful humor, wit, scorn and a very healthy dose of funny cynicism. The writing is masterful and the wry dialogue is sophisticated. Every sentence is expertly crafted. Richard Ferrone's narration is outstanding.
Despite a modern Hercule Poirot ending (Agatha Christie elements are common in this series), this lighthearted piece that keeps your cerebrum very well nourished and your time very well spent.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By MidwestGeek on 21-12-13

One of Block's funniest, most ingenious mysteries.

I enjoy comic mysteries, so I like the Bernie Rhodenbarr series about a burglar with a complicated sense of justice, who usually does more good than harm. This is a complex story about an author, who resembles Thomas Pynchon, whose novel "Nobody's Baby", meant a great deal to Bernie but who guards his privacy at all costs. The denouement is a scene out of Agatha Christie, in which Bernie plays Hercule Poirot, who has gathered the suspects together to coax out the true killer. Meanwhile, Bernie suffers his usual internal torments, engages in the pursuit of sexy women, and of course repeatedly uses his skills as a burglar to obtain information if not wealth.

Richard Ferrone does an excellent job of narration. He even made some female characters come to life.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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