The Long Fall [NOOK Book]

Overview

In sun-baked Phoenix, Arizona, this never-predictable tale tosses into its antic mix a dead father, his two sons--one a small-time ex-con with a consistent genius for sabotaging his own best interests, the other a straight, uptight solid citizen with a moneymaking chain of dry-cleaning stores and a restive ex-stewardess of a wife named Evelyn.

Recently released from prison for possession of a truckload of black-market saguaro cacti - and in deep debt to an unforgiving crank ...

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The Long Fall

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Overview

In sun-baked Phoenix, Arizona, this never-predictable tale tosses into its antic mix a dead father, his two sons--one a small-time ex-con with a consistent genius for sabotaging his own best interests, the other a straight, uptight solid citizen with a moneymaking chain of dry-cleaning stores and a restive ex-stewardess of a wife named Evelyn.

Recently released from prison for possession of a truckload of black-market saguaro cacti - and in deep debt to an unforgiving crank dealer, Jimmy Coates returns home only to discover that his brother has cut him out of his inheritance. A not-unjustifiable desire to settle old scores and new sends Jimmy on a robbery spree that wipes out four of his brother's dry-cleaning establishments. But when he finds himself tumbling for a mutinously sexy Evelyn, the impulse to vengeance reverses itself.

Unwittingly, however, Jimmy has already set in motion a series of dangerous consequences - adultery, blackmail, love, betrayal - that culminate in a blueprint for murder. And it could be Jimmy himself who is taking the long fall.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
This craftily written noir thriller by Kostoff (A Choice of Nightmares) stars Jimmy Coates, a downtrodden Phoenix ex-con whose primary goal in life is sidestepping his loan shark, Ray Harp ("the kind of guy who could make Darwin blush"). Fresh from a two-year prison term for illegally transporting rare, state-protected saguaro cacti, Jimmy spends his time working at the Big and Bigger Jones's Old Wild West Park to make ends meet, but his mounting excuses aren't enough to keep Harp from trying to collect on his looming $6,000 debt. Dispatched to "accelerate" the collection process, Harp's henchmen Newt Deems and Aaron Limbe set out after Jimmy. Limbe in particular is eager to complete this assignment, since his career with the Phoenix police force was terminated after Jimmy bartered incriminating information on Limbe in exchange for his release from a grand theft auto charge. But Jimmy has devised his own solution to his money woes by robbing several dry-cleaning establishments owned by his squeaky-clean brother. It isn't hard for him to justify the thefts, since he's never gotten along with Richard anyway-and now Richard has bilked Jimmy out of their recently deceased father's inheritance. In the process, Jimmy falls for Evelyn, Richard's distracted, disenchanted wife, and their affair brings new complications. Jimmy's love for Evelyn (fueled by great sex) creates the whirlwind that propels this dark tale to its final, violent end. Kostoff's narrative goes down nice and easy, but there's not a congenial character in sight-certainly not Jimmy, whose melting heart does little to take the edge off his boorishness. His final comeuppance feels rightly deserved in this deft, oddball entertainment. (June) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Everything seems to go wrong for ex-con Jimmy Coates. A former cop he testified against and a Phoenix loan shark to whom he owes money both want to kill him. In addition, his strait-laced brother stalls a crucial, hefty inheritance. Fighting back, Jimmy robs his brother's dry cleaners, then helps his sister-in-law commit a crime. Not really a bad guy, Jimmy falls for the woman, botches their robbery a bit, gives the bad guys a hard time, and generally gets caught up in events beyond his control. A fascinating ride through tangled relationships, rendered with clean-cut prose and nicely complicated plot. For all collections. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Six times daily, Jimmy Coates has to die to titillate the audiences at Big and Bigger Jones’s Wild West Park, working a double shift (three shootouts per shift) because he’s desperate for money. Pressuring him for it is a mean-spirited drug dealer/loan-shark named Ray Harp. Jimmy is into Ray big time, and Ray is growing impatient--and when Ray grows impatient, unpleasant consequences ensue, brought about by three thuggish enforcers who enjoy their work. One is a former member of the Phoenix PD with a particular reason for wanting to inflict pain on Jimmy. He’s Aaron Limbe, who became an ex-cop when Jimmy--thinking he could rely on the anonymity he’d been promised--traded certain cop-incriminating information for a pass on a grand larceny rap. Actually, Jimmy has got trouble on a variety of fronts. There’s Richard, for instance, his oh-so-respectable brother, whose solid citizenship doesn’t prevent him from maneuvering Jimmy out of his inheritance. In retaliation, Jimmy decides to knock over four of Richard’s dry-cleaning establishments and use the money to pay off his debt. But then an odd thing happens to Jimmy’s petrified little heart--it gets hammered. He falls helplessly in love with his brother’s restless wife, setting off a chain reaction that makes good turn bad, then bad good, as Jimmy gets more or less what he deserves. Kostoff (A Choice of Nightmares, 1991) writes well enough for a place in the neo-noir vanguard, but be warned: you really have to like noir, because it’s hard to like Jimmy.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781440531880
  • Publisher: F+W Media
  • Publication date: 7/29/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 208
  • Sales rank: 1,308,958
  • File size: 718 KB

Meet the Author

Lynn Kostoff
Lynn Kostoff

Lynn Kostoff is a professor of English at Francis Marion University in Florence, South Carolina. He has also taught at the University of Alabama, Indiana State University, and Bowling Green State University in Ohio where he received his MFA in fiction. He is the author of two crime novels, A Choice of Nightmares and The Long Fall.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 18 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(1)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(3)

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Sort by: Showing all of 18 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2004

    The Long Fall titllates and enchants

    As a writer myself, I can appreciate the skill and knowledge that went into creating The Long Fall. Jimmy Coates is at once roguish and likeable and while he elicits our distrust, he also commands admiration. The Long Falls is deliciously satirical and comercially exciting. Lynn Kostoff has produced a must read book on two levels: deep meaning of life and delightful entertainment.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted June 12, 2003

    A literary 2 Fast2Furious

    Forget the movie 2 Fast 2 Furious. If anyone is looking for a fast, furious, and wickedly funny summer read this is it. From the beginning where the hapless Jimmy Coates is 'dying 6 times a day' at a cheesy wild west show I was hooked. The characterizations are an homage to James Cain - from the low-rent schemers looking for the one big heist that will put them on 'easy street' to the priggish, staightlaced model citizen willing to toss morals aside for revenge. The pace never slows down, and even though Jimmy isn't someone I'd invite to dinner; I still found myself cheering him on.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    It wasn't bad...

    Just took a long time to start peaking my interest. Since it was a short book to begin with, I figured I'd give it a go. It did become interesting well into the book and ended ok. Not one I would pass along, it is again, one of which I would not have chosen but am adventurous. I have enjoyed some new venues recently, surprisingly, had hoped it would hold up to that.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2012

    Do not recommend

    I could not get into this story and did not finish the book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2012

    Recommend

    Good story line.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2012

    Very good book

    I had a hard time putting this book down.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 27, 2012

    Junk!

    Junk! Not worth reading. Glad it was free.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 26, 2012

    It wasn't a fast read for me, but I did finish. The writing was

    It wasn't a fast read for me, but I did finish. The writing was well thought out, but at times I found myself glossing over things that didn't really add much benefit to the story. The main reason why I had to rate this book below average was because I found myself not caring much for the characters. I found Evelyn to be boring. Richard's character was not developed enough for me to want to fully buy into her decision to have an affair with Jimmy. The sibling dynamics between Richard and Jimmy was a little lackluster. I think the author was trying to portray Jimmy as likeable, despite making bad choices, but I also wasn't really buying it. There was just something flat about him that didn't really make me care if he got shot in the end or not. On the bright side, I really liked Limbe's character. He was the most interesting one. If the author wrote a book centered around him, I think I would read it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted June 11, 2012

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