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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Pulp noir aficionados are going to absolutely cherish this Hard Case Crime release -- a reissue of the 1952 Richard S. Prather classic The Peddler (originally published under the pseudonym Douglas Ring) with all-new cover art by Robert McGinnis, the iconic artist who painted many of Prather's most popular covers in the 1950s and '60s.
Tony Romero is a ruthless, street-savvy con man who can throw down with the best of them. Obsessively motivated by money and power, Romero is quickly moving up the ladder in San Francisco's organized crime underworld. Working as a money man in an extensive prostitution ring, the overly ambitious Romero sees the people in authority above him not so much as bosses but as adversaries he will eventually conquer and replace. And Romero does just that, using anything and anyone to elevate his position within the organization -- that is, until he finally meets his match in the unlikeliest of people…
As brutally violent as it is unrelentingly coldhearted, The Peddler has not surprisingly been called by Hard Case Crime editor Charles Ardai "not only one of the best books Prather ever wrote, it's one of the best crime novels I've read, period." Unbelievably, after more than a half century after it was first published, this dark little literary gem reads like it was written yesterday -- a blood-splattered, down-and-dirty crime classic. Paul Goat Allen