Murderers know they can take their time, but bank robbers live by an inviolable rule: Don't tarry in the bank longer than two minutes or you'll wind up in the clinker. When career criminal Max Holman broke the guideline, he paid ten years for his mistake. On the day of his eagerly anticipated release, he learns that his son, an LAPD officer, has been gunned down. Investigators assure him that the killer acted alone and then committed suicide, but for cynical Max, the explanation just doesn't cut the mustard. With the help of the only woman he trusts, he turns his hard-knocks schooling to a good purpose. A gritty, plausible noir thriller.
If Bruce Willis's face keeps coming to mind whenever former bank robber Max Holman speaks in this sharp and touching audio version of Crais's latest bestseller, it's not surprising. Willis starred in the movie of Crais's Hostage and would be perfect as Holman. But Graybill does a good job of making Max more than just an imitation. His Holman quickly comes to life as a bruised, repentant man seeking revenge against those who shot and killed his 23-year-old LAPD rookie son, just a day before Holman's release from prison. Graybill is also skilled at making the lesser roles real and different: the cops who worked with his son cover a range of voices and attitudes, as do the petty criminals, gang members and assorted villains Max encounters. Graybill is especially good at catching the combination of weariness, frustration and basic decency of Katherine Pollard, the former FBI agent who arrested Holman 10 years ago and is now an unemployed single mother and the only person who will help him search for his son's killers. It's one of the author's best books, and audio listeners should quickly be caught up in its subtle, ironic excitement. Simultaneous release with the S&S hardcover (Reviews, Jan. 9). (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
As Max Holman is being released from jail following a term for bank robbery, his estranged son, a Los Angeles police officer, is murdered along with three other cops in the dry bed of the Los Angeles River. The two on-duty and two off-duty officers were apparently killed by someone they knew while sharing a couple of early morning beers. Max wants the killer; he wants revenge at the risk of his job, his parole, even his life-it's personal. This fast-paced, intense murder mystery is very much about impressions and assumptions: the chasms among various cultures (criminal, law enforcement, ex-con), relationships (societal, family, cultural), and economic categories that conspire to dictate how our pasts prejudice our understanding of the world and also prejudice how the world understands us. Crais offers some very interesting characters, a very solid story with fascinating plot twists, and lots of interesting information about bank robberies, law enforcement, and the Los Angeles area. Well produced and well read with feeling and expertise by Christopher Graybill. Very highly recommended for adult collections.-Cliff Glaviano, Bowling Green State Univ. Libs., OH Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
A bank robber turns detective to avenge the son who's always hated him, in this turbocharged suspenser from Crais (The Forgotten Man, 2005, etc.). The day Max Holman finally jumps through the last hoop and goes free after ten years as a guest of the state, he learns that his son Richard has been gunned down, along with three LAPD colleagues. The four cops were executed while drinking under the Fourth Street bridge, he's told; the shooter was Warren Juarez, who had a grudge against the sergeant who'd arrested his brother, and the case is closed when Juarez obligingly commits suicide. Max doesn't buy a word of it. He doesn't think Juarez killed three cops more than he needed to, and he doesn't think anybody could've gotten the drop on the four officers unless they knew and trusted him. With no family or friends to turn to, Max calls Katherine Pollard, the FBI agent who considered him a hero of sorts when she sent him up ten years ago, not knowing she's left the Agency and feels as much an outsider as he does. For such an awkward pair-he's determined to prove that Richie wasn't the dirty cop he seemed to be; she feels she owes him something even though she's warned by everyone around her just how toxic their association is-they click surprisingly well as a team, and soon they've learned enough about a missing $15 million jackpot to get themselves into serious trouble. Dead cops, dirty cops, an unlikely romance between a law enforcement officer and a tarnished character in the City of Angels-it all sounds like L.A. Confidential, and you can be sure that Crais is aiming for the same big-ticket movie sale with a fast-moving case that reads like a 300-page treatment. First printing of 200,000
Robert Crais's shattering New York Times bestseller is "irresistible...up there with Michael Connelly and Dennis Lehane." The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
"Turbocharged suspense...in the City of Angels." Kirkus Reviews
"Crais just keeps getting better." People
"Crais is a master of suspense." The New York Sun
"Heart-Pounding." Los Angeles Times