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Becker's Ring

Overview

Police Detective Brent Kramer has always loved bringing order to the chaos of New York City's streets. Taking down the Dad guys was the number one allure of the job. But now someone else is laying down the law: Paroled murderers are turning up as victims — surgically mutilated to make sure they'll never kill again. And while the public is alternately amused and horrified, Kramer must confront a criminal... with a very disturbing agenda.

"Outrageously funny....A realistic rendering of America's greedy fascination ...

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Overview

Police Detective Brent Kramer has always loved bringing order to the chaos of New York City's streets. Taking down the Dad guys was the number one allure of the job. But now someone else is laying down the law: Paroled murderers are turning up as victims — surgically mutilated to make sure they'll never kill again. And while the public is alternately amused and horrified, Kramer must confront a criminal... with a very disturbing agenda.

"Outrageously funny....A realistic rendering of America's greedy fascination for the bizarre". — Chicago Sun-Times

Cohen pits New York City's finest against a serial mutilator who dishes out a fate literally worse than death". — Kirkus Reviews

"A macabre tale, bordering on black comedy". — Deriot Free Press

"A fast-paced, tightly constructed psycho-thriller with well-drawn characters". — Library Journal

In the cinematic style of Quentin Tarantino and David Lynch comes a riveting novel of dark humor and psychological suspense.

What David Lynch's Blue Velvet and Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction brought to movie audiences, Becker's Ring brings to the reading public--a dark, daring portrait of America, delivered with a manic, off-the-wall humor. Weird, wild, and utterly original, Becker's Ring will have readers teetering on the uneasy edge between fear and antic fun.

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Editorial Reviews

Time Out
Deft...well-developed...considerable and varied talents....Cohen cares about the written word, and his book deserves to be considered in literary terms as well.
Chicago Sun-Times
chilling...Horrific...Bound to be compared to the works of Lynch and Tarantine.
Detroit Free Press
A macabre tale, bordering on black comedy.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Cohen's macabre hardcover debut after the mass market Seven Shades of Black, 1995 is an over-the-top crime thriller that begins when an ex-convict is deposited at a Manhattan hospital with his hands amputated, his arms surgically joined in front of him to form a loop and his mouth sewn shut. As like crimes proliferate, the perp ups the ante, turning a pair of paroled crooks into grotesque Siamese twins by interconnecting their arms and legs. Using a combination of computer technology and medical detective work, NYPD Lt. Brent Kramer and his engineer colleague, Nigel Atkerson, close in on the suspect, using botanical clues supplied by an eccentric scientist who specializes in a form of tree grafting that resembles the suspect's m.o. The story clips along at breakneck speed, aided by some darkly humorous passages in which the victims join the legions of talk-show freaks in search of their Warholian 15 minutes of fame. The detailed descriptions of the surgical procedures are needlessly grisly, however, and the climactic finale, in which the killer captures several of the protagonists, has a slapdash, haphazard feel. Cohen has crafted a fascinating spin on the standard genre formula, but his emphasis on sadism and gore ultimately detracts from the raw emotional power of his tale. Feb.
Library Journal
Someone in New York City has decided to play avenger to punish murderers whose prison sentences allow early parole. But the punishment isn't death; it's a very clever and diabolical medical operation that ensures these criminals never again harm anyone. As the victims, dubbed "hoopers" by the press, are dumped throughout the city, Lieut. Brent Kramer races to find the perpetrator. He enlists the technological knowledge of Nigel Atkinson, an offbeat engineer with a penchant for weird humor and the insight to observe that the "hoopers" resemble bonsai experiments gone awry. Cohen (Seven Shades of Black, Warner, 1995) has written a fastpaced, tightly constructed psychothriller with well-drawn characters, even if the premise is revoltingly weird. Purchase where demand warrants.-M. J. Simmons, Duluth P.L., Minn.
Emily Melton
A demented vigilante deposits several recently paroled murderers in very public locations, naked and alive, but with their hands cut off and their arms surgically joined at the wrists. Apparently, the mutilator has a message to deliver to society: these killers must be stopped so they can't kill again. As New York detective Brent Kramer and his fellow cops get closer to breaking the case, the suspense builds to almost intolerable levels, especially when the mutilator is able to lure two of Brent's colleagues into a potentially lethal trap. Cohen's plot is unique, but the execution leaves much to be desired. Its somewhat tongue-in-cheek tone aside, the prose is rife with awkward sentences and an irritating immaturity that manifests itself in sexual/bathroom humor. Still, the story is original, suspenseful, and gripping, and readers may be able to ignore the flaws. In fact, given the book's sheer readability, it could even find its way onto best-seller lists.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780446604437
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 5/13/2009
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: REISSUE
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 4.25 (w) x 6.75 (h) x 0.87 (d)

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