Prayers for Rain (Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro Series #5)

Prayers for Rain (Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro Series #5)

4.3 128
by Dennis Lehane

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When Patrick first meets Karen Nichols, she strikes him as the kind of woman who irons her socks — an innocent from a protected upbringing, untouched by tragedy. But six months later Karen commits suicide by leaping from one of Boston's most cherished monuments. Patrick finds himself wondering what can alter someone so drastically, so quickly, that suicide seems…  See more details below


When Patrick first meets Karen Nichols, she strikes him as the kind of woman who irons her socks — an innocent from a protected upbringing, untouched by tragedy. But six months later Karen commits suicide by leaping from one of Boston's most cherished monuments. Patrick finds himself wondering what can alter someone so drastically, so quickly, that suicide seems her only option. Yet what begins as idle curiosity soon becomes obsessive as Patrick suspects that the tragic events that befell Karen during the last months of her life — an "accident" that destroyed her fiance; the loss of her job, her apartment, and eventually her mind — may not have been as random as they first appeared. Enlisting the aid of his ex-partner and ex-flame, Angela Gennaro, as well as that of his friend, the lethally unbalanced Bubba Rogowski, Patrick enters into a treacherous game of cat-and-mouse with a man who, instead of merely killing his victims, prefers to make them wish they were dead. As the stakes grow higher and more personal, they find they might be fighting a losing battle — against an enemy the law can't touch, who is always one step ahead of them, who is gradually learning their weaknesses, their loves, and is determined to tear their worlds apart.

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Editorial Reviews
P.I.'s Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro team up once again for the intense Prayers for Rain. Their new task: Catch an evil manipulator whose modus operandi, which doesn't involve a gun or a knife, leaves his victims quite dead nonetheless. See, this madman doesn't do the killing himself: He mercilessly coaxes his victims into killing themselves.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro Series, #5
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 1.04(d)

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Chapter One

The first time I met Karen Nichols, she struck me as the kind of woman who ironed her socks.

She was blond and petite and stepped out of a kelly-green 1998 VW Bug as Bubba and I crossed the avenue toward St. Bartholomew's Church with our morning coffee in hand. It was February, but winter had forgotten to show up that year. Except for one snowstorm and a few days in the subzeros, it had been damn near balmy. Today it was in the high forties, and it was only ten in the morning. Say all you want about global warming, but as long as it saves me from shoveling the walk, I'm for it.

Karen Nichols placed a hand over her eyebrows, even though the morning sun wasn't all that strong, and smiled uncertainly at me.

"Mr. Kenzie?"

I gave her my eats-his-veggies-loves-his-mom smile and proffered my hand. "Miss Nichols?"

She laughed for some reason. "Karen, yes. I'm early.

Her hand slid into mine and felt so smooth and uncallused. it could have been gloved. "Call me Patrick.That's Mr. Rogowski."

Bubba grunted and slugged his coffee.

Karen Nichols's hand dropped from mine and she jerked back slightly, as if afraid she'd have to extend her hand to Bubba. Afraid if she did, she might not get it back.

She wore a brown suede jacket that fell to midthigh over a charcoal cable-knit crewneck, crisp blue jeans, and bright white Reeboks. None of her apparel looked as if a wrinkle, stain, or wisp of dust had been within a country mile of it.

She placed delicate fingers on her smooth neck. "A couple of real PIs. Wow." Her soft blue eyes crinkled with her button nose and she laughed again.

"I'm the PI," Isaid. "He's just slumming."

Bubba grunted again and kicked me in the ass.

"Down, boy," I said. "Heel."

Bubba sipped some coffee.

Karen Nichols looked as if she'd made a mistake coming here. I decided then not to lead her up to my belfry office. If people were uncertain about hiring me, taking them to the belfry usually wasn't good PR.

School was out because it was Saturday, and the air was moist and without a chill, so Karen Nichols, Bubba, and I walked to a bench in the schoolyard. I sat down. Karen Nichols used an immaculate white handkerchief to dust the surface, then she sat down. Bubba frowned at the lack of space on the bench, frowned at me, then sat on the ground in front of us, crossed his legs, peered up expectantly.

"Good doggie," I said.

Bubba gave me a look that said I'd pay for that as soon as we were away from polite company.

"Miss Nichols," I said, "how did you hear about me?"

She tore her gaze away from Bubba and looked into my eyes for a moment in utter confusion. Her blond hair was cut as short as a small boy's and reminded me of pictures I've seen of women in Berlin in the 1920s. It was sculpted tight against the skull with gel, and even though it wouldn't be moving on its own unless she stepped into the wake of a jet engine, she'd clipped it over her left ear, just below the part, with a small black barrette that had a june bug painted on it.

Her wide blue eyes cleared and she made that short,nervous laugh again. "My boyfriend."

"And his name is..." I said, guessing Tad or Ty or Hunter.

"David Wetterau."

So much for my psychic abilities.

"I'm afraid I've never heard of him."

"He met someone who used to work with you. A woman?"

Bubba raised his head, glared at me. Bubba blamed me for Angie ending our partnership, for Angie moving out of the neighborhood, buying a Honda, dressing in Anne Klein suits, and generally not hanging out with us anymore.

"Angela Gennaro?" I asked Karen Nichols.

She smiled. "Yes. That's her name."

Bubba grunted again. Pretty soon he'd start howling at the moon.

"And why do you need a private detective, Miss Nichols?"

"Karen." She turned on the bench toward me, tucked an imaginary strand of hair behind her ear.

"Karen. Why do you need a detective?"

A sad, crumpled smile bent her pursed lips and she looked down at her knees for a moment. "There's a guy at the gym I go to?"

I nodded.

She swallowed. I guess she'd been hoping I'd figure it all out from that one sentence. I was certain she was about to tell me something unpleasant and even more certain that she had, at best, only a very passing acquaintance with things unpleasant.

"He's been hitting on me, following me to the parking lot. At first it was just, you know, annoying?" She raised her head, searched my eyes for understanding. "Then it got uglier. He began calling me at home. I went out of my way to avoid him at the gym, but a couple of times I saw him parked out in front of the house...

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Michael Connelly
You read Lehane's stuff and you think he's got the great ones — Chandler, MacDonald, Parker — watching over him as he writes every page.

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Prayers for Rain (Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro Series #5) 4.3 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 128 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This novel was fast paced action from page one. The thesis of the book is unique and the author executes his theme to perfection. I loved the dialog and with the humor proved an interesting turn in this type of novel . The plot twists are realistic and not contrived. Read this one you won't go wrong.
Guest More than 1 year ago
After deciding that 'Mystic River' was just okay and then moving on to 'Shutter Island' which I proclaimed the best book of this past year and a masterpiece, I didn't think I'd like 'Prayer's For Rain' as much...but I did! This book is yet another masterpiece in that of itself but in a different kind of way than 'Shudder'. The character's bounce off the page and slap you in your face and seem so real that it's hard to put down. They drive this story and they in return sell the storyline. And the storyline is magnificent and enjoyable from start to finish. I found no flaws in this novel at all, except at the end when I didn't want it to be over. Lehane is brilliant and this book is the epitome of excellence. Read this book, love it, cherish it, talk about it. 'Prayer's For Rain' is in a class of it's own.
McCarthy92 More than 1 year ago
I won't really spoil much of this plot, which was excellent. This book was great. Lehane is on the best crime novelists, his writing style is great, he writes good dialogue, and I feel like I know the characters. Read this if you like crime novels.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dennis Lehane is one of my top three favorite authors. He cannot produce books fast enough for my reading pleasure. Once again, he has created characters that grab hold of your emotions and twist them around, not quite knowing if you are feeling compassion for the good guys or bad. I was unable to put the book down and read for many hours at a time...not boring and the use of first-person writing provides so much more details and feelings of the characters true emotions. This book is highly recommended.
CynRod More than 1 year ago
Love this book. This is exactly the psycho- thriller I was looking for. Intelligently written and woven together with all the creativity of an edge-of-your-seat mental puzzle!
Wendi DeMille More than 1 year ago
My first experience with a Dennis Lehane novel was with Shutter Island. That book ruined my for other books. I just couldn't find anything to match up to it for a while. When I found this series I was happy as a clam. I picked up the series in the middle and will be going back to start from the beginning. Great pacing, great characters, great action...great book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Awesome!! I read Gone Baby Gone first, and thought that was good. Prayers is soooo much better, almost as good as Shutter Island. Love Patrick Kenzie. Knowing that Casey Affleck will play him the movie 'Gone Baby Gone' makes it even better!
Guest More than 1 year ago
An enemy equipped with vast power and bottomless resources confronts Kenzie, his old partner Angie and their lovable but monstrous Bubba in this quick paced novel. Driven by guilt because he had not returned a client¿s call for help , Kenzie set about making things right by investigating the causes that led to Karen Nichol¿s suicide. An array of events were discovered, events that could not have been pulled off by nature but was intrinsically planned to drive her to her death. Eventually she lost her will to live and suicide seemed her best resort. Our three stooges then find themselves in a mêlée for their sanity and their lives as they discover layer after layer of treachery and ruse masking the killer and his plots, a killer who prefers to drive his victims to their deaths than the actus reus of physical murder. With swift velocity, charitable portions of suspense and intrigue, and a plot with more twists than a bag of pretzels,(can get rather confusing at certain points_ Lehane provides all the element of a catchy thriller. However, I found the dialogues between the protagonists too `¿concocted¿¿ and `trying too hard to be witty¿. Not natural. But the touch of romance for toughie Bubba added a nice spice. And the ending held a little twist that keeps you wondering. A worthwhile read, if you may.
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The good guys breaking laws to get rid of the scum of the Earth and also save their own lives. I love the main characters am glad humor was thrown in here and there to keep the book from being all about darkness.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series so much i definitely recommnd this entire series
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