Customer Reviews for

Hit List (Keller Series #2)

Average Rating 3.5
( 23 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Humorous dark satire

John Keller¿s business requires frequent flyer miles and constant communication with his ¿agent¿ Dot. John relaxes by collecting stamps and dreams of one day settling in the towns and cities he frequently visits. If he ever honestly wrote his occupation on a 1040, ...

John Keller¿s business requires frequent flyer miles and constant communication with his ¿agent¿ Dot. John relaxes by collecting stamps and dreams of one day settling in the towns and cities he frequently visits. If he ever honestly wrote his occupation on a 1040, John would describe his work as a HIT MAN.

John knows that many of his victims are innocent good people, but employment in the new economy has been booming lately as his skills are in greater demand than ever. However, John has a new problem as someone else is beating him to the hit, hurting his lucrative business that depends on reputation and completing the job, customized to meet the objective of the customer. As an unknown assailant hones in on his consulting services, John concludes that he personally has made the HIT LIST of a rival who plans to shut down John permanently.

HIT LIST contains all the humor and action that readers expect from a Lawrence Block novel. The story line is two parts amusement, two parts gloom and doom, and six parts irony. In spite of his profession and his tendency to languish in self-doubt, John retains a likable charm even if readers wonder why he continues to off decent folks. It is the killing of the innocent that leaves HIT LIST not for everyone, but those readers who relish a dark satirical look at life.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on December 9, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

No Punch

Well written, entertaining, enjoyable, fun characters, light, and didn't leave any loose ends, which I like. That said, this is a story of a hit man and his profession, but the action was all told in past tense, during discussions recounting the events, and very quickly...
Well written, entertaining, enjoyable, fun characters, light, and didn't leave any loose ends, which I like. That said, this is a story of a hit man and his profession, but the action was all told in past tense, during discussions recounting the events, and very quickly, which never really gave me a feel for the dramatic impact of a 'hit'. The talking between characters, however lovable they may be, got increasingly irritating, and kept going off on some tangent or another, finally getting back to the point, at which point I had already lost interest in what was being discussed in the first place. To be stereotypical, a chick book about a guy theme. If you are a stamp collector, great, otherwise skip half of the book, which will leave you with no action and a lot of gabbing. I don't see myself picking another Block book anytime soon.

posted by Anonymous on May 31, 2002

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2002

    No Punch

    Well written, entertaining, enjoyable, fun characters, light, and didn't leave any loose ends, which I like. That said, this is a story of a hit man and his profession, but the action was all told in past tense, during discussions recounting the events, and very quickly, which never really gave me a feel for the dramatic impact of a 'hit'. The talking between characters, however lovable they may be, got increasingly irritating, and kept going off on some tangent or another, finally getting back to the point, at which point I had already lost interest in what was being discussed in the first place. To be stereotypical, a chick book about a guy theme. If you are a stamp collector, great, otherwise skip half of the book, which will leave you with no action and a lot of gabbing. I don't see myself picking another Block book anytime soon.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2002

    Too Much Talking!!

    Three quarters of the way through this book and I am forced to read something else. Not because the story idea is bad, but just because I can't stand listening (think read) to the two main characters talk anymore!! Now I know why someone wants them dead!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Humorous dark satire

    <P>John Keller¿s business requires frequent flyer miles and constant communication with his ¿agent¿ Dot. John relaxes by collecting stamps and dreams of one day settling in the towns and cities he frequently visits. If he ever honestly wrote his occupation on a 1040, John would describe his work as a HIT MAN. <P>John knows that many of his victims are innocent good people, but employment in the new economy has been booming lately as his skills are in greater demand than ever. However, John has a new problem as someone else is beating him to the hit, hurting his lucrative business that depends on reputation and completing the job, customized to meet the objective of the customer. As an unknown assailant hones in on his consulting services, John concludes that he personally has made the HIT LIST of a rival who plans to shut down John permanently. <P>HIT LIST contains all the humor and action that readers expect from a Lawrence Block novel. The story line is two parts amusement, two parts gloom and doom, and six parts irony. In spite of his profession and his tendency to languish in self-doubt, John retains a likable charm even if readers wonder why he continues to off decent folks. It is the killing of the innocent that leaves HIT LIST not for everyone, but those readers who relish a dark satirical look at life. <P>Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 12, 2012

    Can't wait for the next book in Feb 2013!!!

    Great easy read!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 1, 2005

    less would have been much more

    Keller is a great character. The book is not. The story could have been 150 pages shorter and had the same effect. Keller discovers he's being targeted by another hitter, and then for about 200 pages the issue disappears only to become important again in the last few chapters. I liked the idea, I liked the characters, but the story comes up short by Block's insistance upon describing every single minute detail, whether it moves the story forward or not. The story stalls numerous times on conversations and events that have nothing to do with the story. If you want a novel that takes some time to read, this is for you. It's slow and plodding and the pages must be heavy, because I had a hard time turning them at points.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 22, 2003

    Missing John Keller

    I began riding mass transit again so I could have more time with Keller. I not only read hit man and hit list, I have encourged all of my friends and family to do the same. They enjoyed the books and it's characters as much as I did. I look forward to more about Keller. I hope Lawrence Block has the next Keller book in progress.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2001

    A Great Read!

    This book is about 'likeable hit man.' It has all the features needed: great dialogue, an insightful character, a plot that keeps you thinking. Larry Block at the top of his form!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2015

    #9 EDALORN

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  • Posted February 10, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Hit or Miss Novel

    Lawrence Block's Hit List reads something like a strange amalgamation of soap opera and sitcom in print. Block promises us a different kind of 'hired killer' story, and on this he does deliver. Keller is not a Jason Bourne or John Rain, and that is seemingly the problem. Keller is so different from what we've come to accept as the "heroic" assassin, that he feels awkward and uncomfortable to understand. Block pulled no punches in stating that Keller was going through what seemed to be a mid-life crisis, however, in the end he simply came across as neurotic and rather annoying. If you are a fan the genre and also happen to like the t.v. show Monk as well as Nicholas Cage in 'Matchstick Men', then this is the book for you. If you like your assassins tough, enigmatic and devoted, then you had best seek your fix elsewhere.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2003

    Block at his worst

    This has been the 13th book by Lawrence Block I've read, and by far the worst. After reading 'Hit man', I expected great time with its sequel, but... never-ending, pointless and sterile dialogs, as well as extended descriptions of uninteresting matter and boring situations, made it long time, with nothing great about it. Were it some 150 pages shorter, could have been a good book.

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    Posted May 12, 2011

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    Posted March 29, 2011

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    Posted October 19, 2010

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    Posted July 12, 2009

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    Posted January 29, 2013

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    Posted September 8, 2009

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    Posted December 30, 2008

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    Posted December 1, 2011

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    Posted June 24, 2009

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    Posted August 6, 2009

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