Hit Man (Keller Series #1)

Hit Man (Keller Series #1)

by Lawrence Block

Paperback(Mass Market Paperback - Reissue)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780380725410
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/05/2002
Series: Keller Series , #1
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 560,704
Product dimensions: 4.19(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.88(d)

About the Author

Lawrence Block is one of the most widely recognized names in the mystery genre. He has been named a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America and is a four-time winner of the prestigious Edgar and Shamus Awards, as well as a recipient of prizes in France, Germany, and Japan. He received the Diamond Dagger from the British Crime Writers' Association—only the third American to be given this award. He is a prolific author, having written more than fifty books and numerous short stories, and is a devoted New Yorker and an enthusiastic global traveler.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Answers to Soldier

Keller flew United to Portland. He read a magazine on the leg from JFK to O'Hare, ate lunch on the ground, and watched the movie on the nonstop flight from Chicago to Portland. It was a-quarter to three local time when he carried his hand luggage off the plane, and then he had only an hour's wait before his connecting flight to Roseburg.

But when he got a look at the size of the plane he walked over to the Hertz desk and told them he wanted a car for a few days. He showed them a driver's license and a credit card and they let him have a Ford Taurus with thirty-two hundred miles on the clock. He didn't bother trying to refund his Portland-to-Roseburg ticket.

The Hertz clerk showed him how to get on 1-5. Keller pointed the car in the right direction and set the cruise control three miles an hour over the posted speed limit. Everybody else was going a few miles an hour faster than that, but he was in no hurry, and he didn't want to invite a dose look at his driver's license. It was probably all right, but why ask for trouble?

It was still light out when he took the off ramp for the second Roseburg exit. He had a reservation at the Douglas Inn, a Best Western on Stephens Street. He found it without any trouble. They had him in a ground-floor room in the front, and he had them change it to one a flight up in the rear.

He unpacked, showered. The phone book had a street map of downtown Roseburg, and he studied it, getting his bearings, then tore it out and took it with him when he went out for a walk. The little print shop was only a few blocks away on Jackson, two doors in from thecomer, between a tobacconist and a photographer with his window full of wedding pictures. A sign in Quik Print's window offered a special on wedding invitations, perhaps to catch the eye of bridal couples making arrangements with the photographer.

Quik Print was dosed, of course, as were the tobacconist and the photographer and the credit jeweler next door to the photographer and, as far as Keller, could tell, everybody else in the neighborhood. He didn't stick around long. Two blocks away he found a Mexican restaurant that looked dingy enough to be authentic. He bought a local paper from the coin box out front and read it while he ate his chicken enchiladas. The food was good, and ridiculously inexpensive. If the place were in New York, he thought, everything would be three or four times as much and there'd be a line in front.

The waitress was a slender blonde, not Mexican at all. She had short hair and granny glasses and an overbite, and she sported an engagement ring on the appropriate finger, a diamond solitaire with a tiny stone. Maybe she and her fiance had picked it out at the credit jeweler's, Keller thought. Maybe the photographer next door would take their wedding Pictures. Maybe they'd get Burt Engleman to print their wedding invitations. Quality printing, reasonable rates, service you can count on.

In the morning he returned to Quik Print and looked in the window. A woman with brown hair was sitting at a gray metal desk, talking on the telephone. A man in shirtsleeves stood at a copying machine. He wore hom-rimmed glasses with round lenses and his hair was cropped short on his egg-shaped head. He was balding, and that made him look older, but Keller knew he was only thirty-eight.

Keller stood in front of the jeweler's and pictured the waitress and her fiance picking out rings. They'd have a double-ring ceremony, of course, and there would be something engraved on the inside of each of their wedding bands, something no one else would ever see. Would they live in an apartment? For a while, he decided, until they saved the down payment for a starter home. That was the phrase you saw in real estate ads and Keller liked it. A starter home, something to practice on until you got the hang of it.

At a drugstore on the next block, he bought an unlined paper tablet and a black felt-tipped pen. He used four sheets of paper before he was pleased with the result. Back at Quik Print, he showed his work to the brown-haired woman.

"My dog ran off," he explained. "I thought I'd get some flyers printed, post them around town."

LOST DOG, he'd printed. PART GER. SHEPHERD. ANSWERS TO SOLDIER. CALL 555-1904.

"I hope you get him back," the woman said. "Is it a him? Soldier sounds like a male dog, but it doesn't say."

"It's a male," Keller said. "Maybe I should have specified."

"It's probably not important. Did you want to offer a reward? People usually do, though I don't know if it makes any difference. If I found somebody's dog, I wouldn't care about a reward. I'd just want to get him back with his owner."

"Everybody's not as decent as you are," Keller said. 'Maybe I should say something about a reward. I didn't even think of that." He put his palms on the desk and leaned forward, looking down at the sheet of paper. "I don't know," he said. "It looks kind of homemade, doesn't it? Maybe I should have you set it in type, do it right. What do you think?"

"I don't know," she said. "Ed? Would you come and take a look at this, please?"

The man in the horn-rims came over and said he thought a hand-lettered look was best for a lost-dog notice. "It makes it more personal," he said. "I could do it in type for you, but I think people would respond to it better as it is. Assuming somebody finds the dog, that is."

Hit Man. Copyright © by Lawrence Block. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Table of Contents

Interviews

On February 17th, the barnesandnoble.com Author Auditorium welcomed Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Lawrence Block, who discussed his new book, HIT MAN.



Moderator: Welcome, Lawrence Block! Thank you for joining us online tonight. How is everything?

Lawrence Block: So far so good. Glad to be here.


Brownlie from Hiawatha, IA: I would like you to come to the Midwest on a book tour. I know you were in Chicago a few years ago, but how much of a chance is there that you will be in Des Moines or Cedar Rapids? I really do enjoy all of your novels, but Matthew Scudder is my favorite. Many, many times I would like to have been able to sit down and talk to Jim Farber. Is he patterned after someone you know? Much more success and travels to you. Keep writing and come to Iowa.

Lawrence Block: I'll be touring in July and probably in October, but I don't know where or when. I'd like to get to Iowa one of these times. And no, Jim Faber's not based on anybody in particular.


Sergio Pinheiro Lopes from Brazil: Dear Mr. Block, I was very pleased to receive your newsletter today, and luckily it was on the same day you're scheduled to be on the Internet. I saw no mention of plans to visit Brazil. Will this visit take place? And if so, when? If you do come there will only be 46 countries left to visit. Good hearing from you again. All the best.

Lawrence Block: Hi, Sergio! Great to talk to you like this. I may be coming to Brazil in the fall. My publishers there are trying to fix a date. Hope so.


hmmm, how 'bout Edgar? from Amityville, NY: So, what do you mystery folk talk about at the numerous dinners, Mystery Writers meetings, and awards banquets you attend together? Do you like to sit with the same crew of fellow writers all the time? Who's at your table?

Lawrence Block: I won't even be going this year. Lynne and I will be on a cruise; we booked it before I found out I was nominated for an Edgar.


Rebecca from Peoria, IL: I still miss your column in Writers Digest and come back often to SPIDER, SPIN ME A WEB and TELLING LIES FOR FUN & PROFIT. Any chance for another writing book in the near future?

Lawrence Block: Thanks, Rebecca. I have a book called WRITE FOR YOUR LIFE that I want to revise and reprint, but don't know when I'll get around to it.


Brownlie from Hiawatha, IA: Since you have started to write your books by longhand, I wondered if this is how you manage to do so much writing and traveling? If I am ever in New York and you are at the same time, do you ever visit the Matthew and Bernie park benches on a regular schedule? In other words, if a person receives your newsletter forever, how can we ever get to meet you?? Thanks.

Lawrence Block: Best way to meet me is at a signing or reading. That's when I'm accessible to fans; otherwise, I keep my private life private.


Rory from Florida: Hey Lawrence, I have two questions for you: 1)What do you like most about New York? 2)What are your future plans for writing? Thanks a bunch!!!!

Lawrence Block: I just love the energy of New York. I travel as much as I can. but this is home. Far as future plans, I have TANNER ON ICE coming out in July, EVERYBODY DIES in October. And I don't know what I'll write next, but it will probably be a Burglar book.


Sharon from Oyster Bay, NY: Will we see any of your books on the big screen in the near future?

Lawrence Block: Could be. HIT MAN has been optioned, and we're very close to a deal for a Scudder movie.


Marti from Haverford, PA: Why did you decide to create a new character? Will we see any more of Keller?

Lawrence Block: I wrote a story about Keller, and I found I kept having more to say about him. I hope there'll be more stories in the future.


Charles from Plano, TX: Congrats on another Edgar nomination! Of all your numerous literary accomplishments, do you put one above the rest?

Lawrence Block: Thanks so much! I'm usually fondest of the most recent book, and right now I'm very high on EVERYBODY DIES.


Gregory from Jackson Hole, WY: Do you have any words of wisdom for an aspiring mystery writer?

Lawrence Block: Write what you want to. Write the way you want to write it.


Mark from NYC: You've been in this auditorium twice now as a guest! How much has the Internet impacted your life, or your career at least, in this past year? Thanks!

Lawrence Block: Not too much, I don't think. I use email a lot but don't surf the Web a great deal.


Moxie from Avon, CT: Mr. Block, this is an honor to be able to ask you a question. Any plans for having Scudder fall off the wagon? Thanks.

Lawrence Block: The thing about Scudder is I never know what he's going to do next. And if I did I wouldn't tell you. . .


Hector from New Haven, CT: Bernie Rhodenbarr is a sort of endearing fellow, a very likable criminal. I've only read these mysteries so far, of all your books. From what I hear, Keller is much more hard-boiled. Where did he come from? How do you switch psyches to write a "meaner, more gritty" character like this? Thank you!

Lawrence Block: It seems very natural for me to write about very different characters. But I'm a pretty weird guy. . .


Montana Jones from Haverford, PA: How can I get a subscription to your newsletter?

Lawrence Block: Nothing easier. Just email me your name and postal mailing address at LawBloc@aol.com and keep me up to date on address changes. Newsletter's free, and it comes via snail mail.


Hughes from Jacksonville, FLA: How different is Keller from Scudder?

Lawrence Block: Very different, and the book's different in tone, more ironic.


Georgina R. from Passaic, NJ: How long have you had your mustache? It is quite becoming on you. =)

Lawrence Block: Why, thanks, Georgina! Had it since mid-'94.


Brownlie from Hiawatha, IA: I loved HIT MAN, and just when I thought he was going to go soft, oops, he garrotted someone else. Keep up the good work, and write more and more.Thanks

Lawrence Block: Thanks!


Dennis and Melissa from Victoria, TX: We are huge fans of your books, especially the Scudder series. As an exercise we adapted THE MERCIFUL ANGEL OF DEATH as a teleplay, and it works wonderfully. Are there any plans to make any TV movies or feature films of any of the Scudder stories?

Lawrence Block: Possible feature -- the deal's in the formative stages.


Mark from NYC: You write with wry irony and humor at times. It seems that some of the gruesome stories that splash the pages of our city tabloids are too upsetting, too morally shocking and saddening to be fitted with a wry tone of voice. Do you lay off writing about any particular type of crime? Or is the truth and what is actually happening your only denominator?

Lawrence Block: Hard to answer that. In EIGHT MILLION WAYS TO DIE, Scudder keeps noticing the crimes in the tabloids; each time I wrote a chapter, I just listed ones that had been in the paper the day before.


Bradley from Queens, NY: What is your opinion of the NYPD? Do you have a lot of police officer friends?

Lawrence Block: I've known a few cops over the years. My experiences with the NYPD have all been positive ones.


NellieOlsen from Tannersville, PA: Have you ever killed off one of your main characters, someone you've worked with for several texts? I don't know how any author could have the ability to do such a thing. Just curious if you ever found a way to do that that didn't leave you wishing he/she was still alive.

Lawrence Block: Well, you can't make an omelet without breaking the occasional egg. But I've been sorry that I killed Abel Crowe, the fence in THE BURGLAR WHO STUDIED SPINOZA. I miss him. But let's keep one thing straight. I didn't kill him. The murderer killed him.


Deej Barens from New Westminster, BC: I was ecstatic to read in your latest newsletter about the new Evan Tanner book. Would it give too much away to say how you managed to bring him into the '90s, without him working from an old-age home? :)

Lawrence Block: It would give too much away. Let's just say it was ingenious.


Sheri from California (@work): Good evening. How difficult was it "growing" Keller from a short-story character into one who could carry a full-length novel?

Lawrence Block: Not difficult at all. From the second story, I realized I was writing a novel on the installment plan, and it worked out quite easily.


Frankie from NYC: Do you prefer writing short stories or writing full-length novels?

Lawrence Block: Well, short stories provide something closer to instant gratification. There's always an aspect of trench warfare in a novel.


Dennis and Melissa from Victoria, TX: How many emails do you get per day, and what percentage do you answer? What is your criteria for a personal answer?

Lawrence Block: I don't keep count. And a lot depends on how busy I am.


Marcus from Bellingham, WA: How autobiographical are your characters?

Lawrence Block: Not too.


Phyllis from Atlanta, GA: Please, please tell me that your new book is another Matt Scudder novel. I never get enough of him. Although the books are always exciting, they are also like donning a pair of well-broken-in, comfortable old shoes. I can also count on Matt to make me aware of one of life's little lessons and even life's little rewards. Thank you for giving me, my brothers, and many of my friends, our friend, Matt Scudder.

Lawrence Block: EVERYBODY DIES, coming in October, is indeed a Scudder novel.


Manley from USA: Do you read a lot of fiction?

Lawrence Block: Not too much these days.


Mark from Denver, CO: What can we expect next from Lawrence Block?

Lawrence Block: If you find out, lemme know. . .


Francesca Ortiz from Ft. Worth, TX: Have you read Ed McBain's (AKA Evan Hunter) new book? THE LAST BEST HOPE, I think it is called. Just looking for an early review. Thanks! I see he's a friend of yours.

Lawrence Block: Haven't read it yet, but I'll be eager to. HIT MAN is dedicated to him, you know.


Nicole from Iowa: Who is your favorite mystery writer?

Lawrence Block: Why, I am, Nicole. Thought you knew that.


Paul from NYC: Hello Lawrence, I am a big fan of your writing. I go to Armstrong's on 57th Street all the time, and I was wondering if you frequent that establishment, like your characters?

Lawrence Block: Sure, when I'm in the neighborhood. Good place.


Alex Mannias from Buffalo, NY: So do you like this new character you've created? Good to have him around?

Lawrence Block: Yes, I do. He's a sort of Urban Lonely Guy of assassins, and I like his attitude.


Melissa and Dennis from Victoria, TX: What experience(s), event, role model, etc. led you to know that you wanted to and could write? When did you start writing stories?

Lawrence Block: I don't know what let me know this was something I could do, but it happened in 11th grade when I started having fun with my assignments in English class. That's also around the time when I started reading contemporary American literature, and the idea of writing came to me, and I knew it was what I wanted to do. And within a couple of years I was doing it professionally.


Tim from NYC: Are you happy writing full time?

Lawrence Block: It sure beats working for a living.


Moxie from Avon, CT: Ever consider having two characters meet in a book, like Scudder and Bernie the Burglar? Thanks for the newsletter.

Lawrence Block: Couldn't happen. They live in two entirely different worlds. I've wanted to have Bernie and Donald E. Westlake's Dortmunder get together, but Don's too busy; I can't get him to play.


Brownlie from Hiawatha, IA: Finally, someone had a really good name for those wretched little white packing deals. My eight- and six- year-old grandchildren loved it. Ghost turds, how brilliant!

Lawrence Block: I didn't invent that, but I'm fond of it.


Todd from Hollywood, CA: Have you ever done any screenwriting?

Lawrence Block: Not really. There have been times I wanted to, but they're gone.


Rebecca from Peoria, IL: What do you do to recharge your creative batteries? Movies, different types of books, sports, theater?

Lawrence Block: I travel a lot. Or, as an alternative, I sink into an abysmal depression.


Melissa and Dennis from Victoria, TX: How do you do research for your books? Is there a process like "method writing"? PS -- Melissa cannot see anyone but Nick Nolte in the Scudder role. What do you think?

Lawrence Block: Nolte's not a bad choice at all. And what I use most in writing is imagination, and I can't really explain how that works.


Sheri from San Jose, CA: Tease us a bit more about EVERYBODY DIES...

Lawrence Block: Well, what shall I say? It's dark and violent. How's that?


Deej Barens from New Westminster, BC (again): Ever get feedback from Sue Grafton on your references to her books in THE BURGLAR WHO TRADED TED WILLIAMS? (BTW: I started reading her books after that, I figured if she was worthy of a mention or 12 by you, she must be good ;) )

Lawrence Block: Sue's a good friend. And, as you've already found out, a splendid writer.


Dennis & Melissa from Victoria, TX: How much rewriting is there from first draft to finished product on a novel?

Lawrence Block: I don't rewrite a great deal, unless something goes wrong. If all goes well, my first draft is what you wind up reading.


Bobby from Houston, TX: You coming to Texas to read?

Lawrence Block: Well, I'd like to. I always have a good time in Texas, and I've been at Murder by the Book in Houston many times.


Chuck from New Jersey: No question, just want to tell you I am a big fan!

Lawrence Block: Hey, thanks very much!


Moxie from Avon, CT: How often do you write a story for Ellery Queen?

Lawrence Block: How often I write short stories depends on what ideas I happen to get. I have a story in the new issue of Ellery Queen, and I've got one scheduled in their Christmas issue. And I hope to do more.


Rebecca from Peoria, IL: There is so much variety in the mystery genre these days and so many talented new writers breaking into print. Can you name a couple of new writers who deserve more attention?

Lawrence Block: You know, I really hate to say anything nice about another writer, because all it means is I'll make enemies of all the people I don't mention. That said, I'll say that I have a lot of admiration for Harlan Coben. He has strange taste in neckties, however.


Patrick from South Jersey: Do you listen to any music while writing? If so, what kind? Thanks!

Lawrence Block: Never when I'm working. I just find it intrusive. I like jazz and classical music and country and folk, but not when I'm working.


Moxie from Avon, CT: Last question from me: Is Mick Ballou in the new Scudder book? Thanks for being here.

Lawrence Block: Mick Ballou has a major role in EVERYBODY DIES.


Moderator: Thank you for joining us tonight. Any closing comments?

Lawrence Block: This was fun. I'll just close by reminding people that my newsletter, which is free and worth every penny, comes out once or twice a year; just email me at LawBloc@aol.com and give your name and mailing address, as it's only available by snail mail.


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Hit Man 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 62 reviews.
5280 More than 1 year ago
Loved this book. The main character; Keller is a hitman that's not exactly what you'd expect. As he travels to do his job, he routinely fantasizes about settling down in work locale. It's an offbeat and entertaining read. I always love to find a book like this that doesn't follow the normal and expected format of things. Grab a copy and enjoy!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was my first Lawrence Block book I read. And I must say this Keller guy cracks me up. This assassin is one the most funniest characters I ever read. All due to Block's witty prose. And I tell you, I'm hooked to his stuff. So give it try, it's worth it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed every page of this book except the last. I hated to see it end. A character and humor to which almost everyone can relate. I look forward to reading Hit List as soon as I can pick up a copy.
Hardman More than 1 year ago
Story was very disjointed. After finishing I found this was because it was a collection of short stories featuring the main character. Some scenes moved right into another with no warning---or spacing---and more than a few times I had to stop and re-read a section to discern what was happening. Keller is an interesting enough character, as is the secretary of his "handler" (though we never meet that gentleman). If they polished up the Nook version and made it clear that it was a series of seperate stories, then it would have been much better. Kind of interested in reading the next book, but only if it's a solid, single story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a phenomenonally enjoyable read because it is such a humorous introspection into the nature of humankind. Keller, who is unapologizingly lethal, and who is paid well for it, is at the same time a very likeable character that anybody can identify with. He experiences the same problems that everyone else does, and the fact that he is a hitman somehow becomes secondary to his search for a greater fulfillment out of life. Block created a character as charming and likeable as any classic hero, but the amazing thing about this is that Keller is not, by any means, heroic. This is honestly the most entertaining book I have ever read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read two books in this series and enjoyed them both. The books in this series may not be what you expect so i recomend reading the free sample before buying. I am hooked and will read them all!
Guest More than 1 year ago
although lawrence block is a suberb writer and the plot is fantastic, he is only short on one thing in this book. the writing is unique and it is a real page turner with suspense and action happening everywhere. the only thing wrong with the book is that the main character, joh keller, isnt developed very well and u somewhat dont really get to know him until you read 'Hit Parade' which is probably his best book out of the three.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this books is amazing! block does a great job in description, and in the charaters personailty and traits,
seane on LibraryThing 27 days ago
Great book. Series of short stories revolving around Keller. His wry humor will make you want to read the next ones. Funny stuff with interesting plot.
Ti99er on LibraryThing 27 days ago
Did you ever think you would find yourself sympathizing with the plight of a professional hit man? After reading Lawrence Block's story about John Keller you might change your mind. Hit Man is the first novel of four in this long running series. This book was written in the late 90's but has continued through to today with Block's latest story in the series, Hit and Run; which was released earlier this year. If you like mob style stories and wish to venture into a new serial series than Hit Man is right up your alley. Just be sure to keep your eyes open at all times, because you never know who is in the alley with you.
shob.dw on LibraryThing 27 days ago
I like Lawrence Block, especially the Scudder series. Hitman, a standalone, chronicles the life (in short vignettes) of John Keller, ur average New Yorker who's ur decent apartment neighbour who once in a while takes a flight to assassinate people. He's likeable, polite, and wields his own brand of right and wrong. When he comes to the crossroads of whether his "job" is getting the better of him, quirky things begin to happen. This includes a psychiatrist, a dog, a romantic fling, and a hobby. The story is very much noir / blck humour and quirky enough to keep u hooked. The sessions with the shrink alone is worth the price of the book! Highly recommended.
crazybatcow on LibraryThing 27 days ago
I was very surprised at how much I liked this story - if you like books about bad things that aren't also full of morals, you should like this too. It's not a mystery/thriller... and it's not much like a true crime novel either - it's sorta like a character study, except the character you're studying happens to be a contract killer. He isn't cruel at all, but also is not soft n' cuddly either. The book does not explore the morals or reasons behind Keller's job, or even go much into details on how he kills (it's not gory at all)... it's more like an insight into some guy's mind that you would expect to be abnormal or exciting, or something, but turns out that he really isn't that much different from other people who don't happen to kill for a living.
seventime on LibraryThing 6 months ago
Begins as a collection of short stories about a single character (Keller, the hitman), flows into a novel narrative by the end. A nice piece of work... if you enjoy stories about hit men.
Anonymous 7 months ago
I've read all the Hit Man books and I'm starting over - can't tell you how much I love them . I always pictured Kelly er to look like James Gandofino - broke my heart when he died. There is a new novella featuring Hit Man - Keller's Fedora. Makes me yearn for another book by him. The only series that is just as good is Thomas Perry's Jane Whitefield books - great reads.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Better question-- How much were the editors paid? Awful book, storyline and yes, terrible author.. DaU Cudahy, Wisconsin
ThePolyBlog More than 1 year ago
PLOT OR PREMISE: Keller is a hit man. The contracts come from White Plains, from an unseen man upstairs and the man's assistant named Dot. He gets the jobs and he does them. A pro...no mistakes. Life is good. And every time Keller goes to a new town, he gets real estate agents to show him houses he'll never buy. Then he kills the target and goes home. And goes to therapy, gets a dog, gets a girlfriend, meets an agent from the government, and generally cruises through life piling up bodies. But there are always little problems -- like the man who hires him through a front and then neglects to pay the second half. Or the two rivals who both hire Keller to kill the other and he has to choose which one. Or the three "innocents" that the government has him kill. In the end, he decides to retire. And find a hobby. And even that doesn't work out as planned. . WHAT I LIKED: "The character is interesting and business-like. He has trouble killing a man he likes because he knows the man is waiting for it and Keller had saved his grandson from drowning, so he is somewhat conflicted. And the search for explanations about his life and his past are at once both deep and superficial -- deep questions that Keller can turn away from anytime he wants and simply shrug. And mean it. On the lighter side, he uses various identities when he travels, identities of real people. So, just for fun, he occasionally calls the wives from the hotel he is staying in so that when the couple complain to American Express that they weren't there, the call appears to be them to their own home, just to mess with them. But then he feels guilty, so he sends the wife flowers from the husband - charged to the husband's card of course. And his depictions of some places in New York City were a nice ""homecoming"" since I was there a while ago and know all too well the places he was describing. . WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Some of the chapters seem somewhat disjointed, which is likely a reflection of the fact that many of the chapters appeared "as is" in Playboy magazine as short stories. The only other complaint is that in a couple of places the story jumps back to New York City a little two fast and the reader is left wondering exactly what happened and how he killed the target. Particularly for the guy who initially stiffs Keller on the second half of his fee -- there is no explanation whether Keller kills him or not. He plans it but then has to go back to New York City suddenly. No explanation. A good set of stories overall, although its hard to get into the character since the character is presented rather cold and superficial. Almost like a description of someone's life in the past, it's hard to feel tension or great interest in the day to day happenings. . BOTTOM-LINE: Maybe you've met a hitman and didn't know it. . DISCLOSURE: I received no compensation, not even a free copy, in exchange for this review. I am not personal friends with the author, but I do follow him on social media.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Do not recommend.
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Bacaczar More than 1 year ago
I purchased this book with great trepidation. Wasn't sure what to expect. The story line was interesting, and even though many readers complained about the disjointedness, it made you pay attention. I did have a problem with the coldness that came across through Keller. But I guess what can you expect from an assassin. Hopefully, as I read on in the series Keller will be developed more thoroughly. The only mistake I found in the book was Block stating he inserted a new "clip" in his gun. It's not a clip but a "magazine".
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago