Swann's Last Song

Swann's Last Song

by Charles Salzberg

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Swann's Last Song by Charles Salzberg

Skip tracer Henry Swann cares little about anything but money, so when a beautiful Upper East Side woman shows up in his office and hires him to find her missing husband, he smiles and takes the cash. But when this seemingly simple missing-person case turns into homicide, Swann finds himself trapped in a complex web of connections and multiple identities that takes him out of New York City and across two continents.

Praise for SWANN'S LAST SONG ...

"Swann's got the smarts and hard-boiled cynicism of Sam Spade, but he's also got a wicked sense of humor that keeps things cool even when the action gets hot." -- Brian Kilmeade, author of The New York Times bestseller The Games Do Count

"Salzberg's a hell of a writer. He delivers thrills, insight and plenty of laughs. Swann is a very cool take on the classic P.I." -- Andrew Klavan, author of True Crime and Don't Say a Word

"A veritable travelogue of suspense, SWANN'S LAST SONG grabs hold of the reader and doesn't let go. Salzberg's anti-hero is a soulful investigator and one of the most paradoxically endearing characters I've come across. I hope this isn't Swann's last song." -- Joy Behar (co-host of The View)

"Salzberg defies expectations left and right in this subtly subversive, genre-twisting page turner. SWANN'S LAST SONG is where literature meets entertainment" -- Mark Goldblatt, author of Africa Speaks

Product Details

BN ID: 2940156906680
Publisher: Down & Out Books
Publication date: 12/12/2016
Series: Henry Swann , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 269
Sales rank: 513,804
File size: 769 KB

About the Author

Charles Salzberg is the author of the Shamus nominated Swann’s Last Song, and the sequels Swann Dives In and Swann’s Lake of Despair which was a finalist for two Silver Falchions, the Beverly Hills Book Award and the Indie Excellence Award, as well as Devil in the Hole, which was named one of the best crime novels of 2013 by Suspense Magazine. One of his novellas, “Twist of Fate,” is included the collection Triple Shot. He teaches writing for the New York Writers Workshop, where he is a Founding Member. To learn more about Charles Salzberg, visit CharlesSalzberg.com.

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4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
SheilaDeeth More than 1 year ago
I remember loving those dark detective novels, set in dark times in dark American cities. They were narrated by downbeat private eyes who kept getting it wrong but somehow always ended up right. The protagonist was always cynical, gritty and real, and the women were shapely, ill-fated, dangerous or desperate. But times have changed and I was looking for something more up-to-date, which Charles Satzberg provides very expertly in "Swann's Last Song." Swann lives in modern times in a modern American city. He had a wife and child, and it wasn't his fault he lost them. He's wounded. He cares. Living the rather boring life of a present-day private eye-a skip tracer-he reads because what else would you do when you're hiding in a car. He quotes poetry, buys drinks all round, and somehow ends up searching for the victim of a crime, its perpetrator, and himself. The investigation takes him across America and beyond, throwing him into and out of the unknown, twisting and turning as he stays one step ahead of the reader and two behind the answer. Salzberg has created a worthy character in Swann, a narrator with dry wit and a pleasing sense of the absurd, and someone I sincerely hope to meet again on his next case.
AnnBKeller More than 1 year ago
Henry Swann is just an ordinary skip tracer in New York, sometimes paid in food stamps; that is, when he is paid at all. Then SHE walked in. Beautiful, poised Sally Janus hired Swann to locate her missing husband. It seemed like a simple enough case, but Harry Janus was involved in something sinister, big enough that someone decided he'd be better off dead. Tracking down Harry's killer turns out to be a lot more complex than Swann anticipated. A dangerous web of deception, lies, multiple identities, drugs and antiquities dealing propels Swann to Mexico, where creatures that walk, fly, crawl and slither threaten to do Swann in at every turn. Swann barely escapes with his life and hurries to Berlin, as the noose of danger continues to tighten around his throat. Thrilling and action packed, Swann's Last Song is an excellent read! SIX STARS, if not a halfpenny more.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Manhattan based private investigator Henry Swann earns a living as a repo man. So he is more than shocked when femme fatale Sally Janus wants to hire him to find her missing husband, Harry. Besides the wealth that denotes she can afford a downtown pro, he is puzzled that she cane run down neighborhood. Still the upfront money is too good to pass even if he has never done a missing person case.------------ However, almost immediately after she hires him, Harry's murdered body is found in a hotel dive sleazier than the repo man¿s office. Sally rehires Swann to find her husband's killer once again he accepts though he never did a homicide investigation before as the money is too good to pass. He begins to follow clues that take him to rock and roll in Vegas, Mexico and Germany in search of the Peking Man fossils.------------- SWANN¿S LAST SONG is an exciting but odd hard boiled noir. The story line starts out fast-paced as Henry feels he is in a movie when the femme fatale hires him to first find her husband and when the corpse is located find who killed him. Although the plot spins totally out of control especially after trips to Vegas, Mexico and Europe, fans who like the action piled on without regard to accepting food stamps or passport stamps will relish Swann¿s search for the Peking Man.--------- Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As an avid Law & Order SVU and X Files fan, I absolutely loved Swann’s Last Song. The mystery/thriller tells the story of a NYC private investigator, Henry Swann, whose typical jobs of reclaiming cars and tailing cheating husbands is replaced with a missing person’s saga financed by the disappeared man’s wealthy and secretive wife. The missing person case turns into a murder mystery and Swann comes in to his element as a coy, suave, secretive investigator as he meets guerrillas, art thieves, Hollywood film makers, government spies, overly friendly LA wives, 80’s one hit wonder bands, and Leaky fans. Chaos and more eccentric characters ensue. The writing style is one of the best things about this book: the opening scene reminded me of a Guy Noir, Private Eye sketch from Prairie Home Companion and I found myself reading in that voice. Swann has a great eye as a detective: he is both novice to murder cases but savvy enough to keep some cards close to his chest and adventurous enough to negotiate with war criminals and revolutionaries. His inner monologue and dialogue are witty and sharp, but not cliché like CSI. I felt like I was being taken seriously as a reader because Swann gave me clues but didn’t keep me in the dark or give me the candy in an outstretched hand. The best part of the book is that this mystery did not stick to any usual scripts; it crosses 3 continents instead of staying in New York, has Indiana Jones-like archeology plotlines, conspiracy theories about rock n’ roller deaths, chase scenes in Mexican jungles and LA highways, and an amazing final twist. Nothing in this story is predictable, which I can appreciate after reading and watching too many mysteries that I figured out early on.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This one's a page turner... If you like Philip Roth, Raymond Chandler and Thomas Berger, you'll love Charles Salzberg's SWANN'S LAST SONG, which seems to be a combination of all three. The strength of this book lies in it's main character, Henry Swann, a private eye detective who's as bright as he is cynical. He's good at noting life's little ironies while lying his way into or out of any uncomfortable situation, which he seems to find himself in frequently. Swann's not the most honest detective, but he's certainly one of the most charming. Salzberg's written an intelligent, highly entertaining suspense novel, and it wouldn't surprise me if it eventually becomes a box office hit starring the likes of Robert Downey, Jr. And I'd be the first one in line.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago