Crookedby Brian M. Wiprud
Nicholas Palihnic is a natty, tweed-suited hustler who knows every nook and cranny of New York–and a thousand ways to break a girl’s heart. Beatrice Belarus is a Manhattan art dealer with an insatiable appetite for money–and for anyone who gets in her way. And a painting titled Trampoline Nude, 1972 has neither nudity nor a trampoline. But when Nicholas is hired by an insurance company to find the recently stolen painting, a murdered art thief points him to a trove of gold buried beneath Manhattan–and suddenly all roads are leading back to Beatrice. As fortune hunters, lovers, and other strangers gather around him, there’s one thing Nicholas must remember above all else: in this business, it’s better to be crooked than dead....
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- Random House Publishing Group
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Meet the Author
BRIAN M. WIPRUD
Age: Wears red tennis shoes
Physical Description: Diabolical & Occasionally Fiendish
Profession: Mystery Author, Outdoor Writer & Photographer
*Independent Mystery Bookseller's Association Bestseller
*2002 Lefty Award for Most Humorous Novel
*2003 Barry Award Nominee for Best Paperback Original
Favorite Books: The Squid and I, Chuck Flink
Tubing Badgers for Fun and Profit, Bubbles McCoy
Favorite Movies: "Bowanga! Bowanga!," "Eegah!"
Hobbies: Knife Throwing, Sword Swallowing, Hanging by Fish Hooks
Favorite Lines: "What a gorgeous day. What effulgent sunshine. It was a day of this sort the McGillicuddy brothers murdered their mother with an axe." WC Fields.
Favorite Scotch: Bourbon
From the Paperback edition.
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Fans of author Brian M. Wiprud already know how exciting, yet humorous, the character Garth Carson is from the previous books titled 'Pipsqueak' and 'Stuffed'. Garth is the taxidermy collector who is minds his own business, but somehow always ends up in a deadly mess. In this story, however, Garth takes a back seat. ................. Nicholas Palihnic is Garth's hustler brother. He knows every nook-and-cranny of New York. Insurance companies hire him to locate stolen objets d'art for them. Problem is that Nicholas does it in such a way that by the time he brings back the art, he has racked up more bills in damages than the art work is worth. ................... Nicasia Grieg heads Trident Mutual's investigative unit. She is devastated when she is informed that her boyfriend, Barney Swires, had been eaten by crocs in Costa Rica and only a foot is left. But Nicholas does not buy it. His gut says Barney is alive. He is out to prove it and find out why someone wants everyone to believe Barney is dead. And just what is Barney up to now anyway? He gets assistance from Maureen NcNary, owner of Park Slope Investigations. At the same time, Nicholas is on the hunt for a stolen Moolman's painting. Leads point to Beatrice Belarus 'BB', a greedy Manhattan art dealer who will do whatever she must to make a deal. .......................... **** The author has succeeded in creating a sleazy character that I could not help but like. Nicholas, in my opinion, is not as cool as his brother, Garth however, the sense of humor as a defense mechanism seems to run in the family. I would dearly love to see the brothers get together for a full length adventure or two in the future. If you love mysteries, humor, and those old black-and-white P.I. movies, this title is for you! ****
Taxidermist Garth Carson has a charming scoundrel for a brother but at least for now Nicholas Palihnic is working on to right side of the law as Newcastle Insurance hires him to find a stolen Moolrman painting. A man calls him stating he wants the painting returned to the proper owner. When Nicholas goes to informant¿s apartment, he finds the painting stolen from the thief and the man murdered. When the police arrive, Nicholas is arrested but a high powered lawyer that he didn¿t call gets the charges dropped.----------- He finds out Nicasia, who also works for Trident, helped get him out of jail because the head of the Manhattan investigative unit wants something in return. The love of her life, Barney Swires a former thief and collector was supposedly killed in the seas off Costa Rica by pirates and his body eaten by a crocodile. She wants Nicholas to go to Costa Rica and find out what happened to Barney. However in the meantime, Barney is very much alive and staying in New York He was hired to dig up the ship the Bunker Hill that lies underground in Manhattan, which purportedly has a fortune in gold pellets on it. What happens next is a series of double triple and even quadruple crosses with all the players involved in the crimes distrusting one another.------ Readers looking for a delightfully zany and totally charming crime caper to read that has characters who could be the hero, the villain or both then look no further than Brian¿ M. Wiprud¿s latest work (see STUFFED and PIPSQUEAK), a totally charming serio-comedic thriller that constantly has the audience off guard as one shocking surprise follows another. Garth and his significant other Angie make a cameo appearance after starring in the two previous madcap tales.----- Harriet Klausner