Friday, April 20, 2012

Man on the run

Title: Hit and Run
Author: Lawrence Block
Bookmark: the flattened cardboard sleeve from a Hydroflask.  Get one!  they're great!

It was a moment of weakness at a library book sale.  I'm a sucker for library book sales.

I've said it before: Block is a great writer, but you don't usually read Block for the mystery--you just go along because you know it will be a fun ride.  That said, this isn't his best work.  It's still engaging, and has a fun premise (framing a hitman for an assassination he didn't commit by hiring him for an unrelated kill in the same town), and features Keller, the wistful, stamp-collecting killer-for-hire, but this feels more like a retirement party than a new adventure.  After explaining the set-up, and how very thoroughly Keller has been screwed, we are treated to a few chapters of life on the lam, then the obligatory love interest, and the (it's not really a spoiler if you can see it coming) triumph of our hero.

Ok, this is the spoiler.

After Keller wins out, as we knew he would (he's Keller, after all, not just some thug with a gun), he returns to his lady love and a quiet life of manual labor.  It suits him, he's happy, and I'm happy for him, but it's clear that unless Block really wants to pull this character out of retirement, he's done whacking moles.

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posted by reyn at 1:42 PM