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Body Work: A V. I. Warshawski Novel | [Sara Paretsky]

Body Work: A V. I. Warshawski Novel

V.I. has been visiting Club Gouge, Chicago’s edgiest nightspot, where a woman known as the Body Artist turns her naked body into a canvas for the audience to paint on. The show attracts all kinds of people, from a menacing off-duty cop to Ukrainian mobsters and Iraq war vets - and V.I.’s impetuous cousin, Petra. A tormented young painter shows up, too, and the intricate designs she creates on the Body Artist drive one of the vets into a violent rage.
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Publisher's Summary

“Doctors take days off — why not PIs?” V.I. Warshawski demands. But when America’s hardest-working private eye goes clubbing, a stranger is shot and dies in her arms.

V.I. has been visiting Club Gouge, Chicago’s edgiest nightspot, where a woman known as the Body Artist turns her naked body into a canvas for the audience to paint on.

The show attracts all kinds of people, from a menacing off-duty cop to Ukrainian mobsters and Iraq war vets - and V.I.’s impetuous cousin, Petra. A tormented young painter shows up, too, and the intricate designs she creates on the Body Artist drive one of the vets into a violent rage.

When the painter is shot, the cops figure it’s an easy collar — PTSD vet goes off the rails, stalks then kills young woman. But the vet’s family hires V.I. to clear his name, and the detective uncovers a chain of ugly truths that stretches all the way from Iraq to Chicago’s South Side.

Crack another case with V. I. Warshawski.

©2010 Sara Paretsky (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Paretsky’s superb 14th novel featuring PI V.I. Warshawski (after Hardball) delves into Chicago’s avant-garde art scene.... Scenes with her aging neighbor and a new love interest give a much needed balance to the serious plot. This strong outing shows why the tough, fiercely independent, dog-loving private detective continues to survive." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (130 )
5 star
 (34)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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Overall
3.7 (44 )
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3 star
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Story
4.1 (39 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Eva Gannon Chicago, Illinois, US 10-05-10
    Eva Gannon Chicago, Illinois, US 10-05-10 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    497
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    Overall
    "VI Grows Up"

    In this book, a soldier suffering from PTSD after three tours of duty in Iraq/Afghanistan, is accused of murder. VI is hired by the parents to clear him. What follows is highly entertaining, another well woven tale in the series. There's just enough wry humor to be satisfying.


    What interested me most is VI's self-assessment. She's 50ish, no longer young, a point driven home by almost every other character. She's questioning her vocation as a private investigator, and asking what she has to show for her life. If there's another book in the series, it will be interesting to see if it's the last, and if so, how VI retires.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cheryl Long Beach, CA, United States 10-19-10
    Cheryl Long Beach, CA, United States 10-19-10 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sad for Sara"

    Well, I hate to say it, but Sara Paretsky has really lost her touch. It's been a long time since I've read a V. I. Warshawski, and I wish I had passed this one up. I don't know if would have been any better if I'd read it instead of listening to it. The story line was a good idea, but it just seems like it was tritely done. Practically everyone in the story was mean, argumentative, pissy, and any other adjective you can think of. Wow, even Vic's best friends and relatives were mean and argumentative. Really disappointed, wish I hadn't wasted one of my monthly credits. Sad.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean Santa Cruz, CA, United States 10-30-10
    Jean Santa Cruz, CA, United States 10-30-10 Member Since 2010

    I am an avid eclectic reader

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Body Work"

    Paretsky has done a good job with her new book. Susan Ericksen was great reading the story. I think she did better job than the other narrator of prior books. The idea of body art was interesting and different. Always enjoy the description of Chicago. Feels like I just took a trip there for a visit. Paretsky always has a fast pace with lots of action. Appreciated the comment about wishing that she had Abbie P. from NCIS to help her track a cell phone. But did feel there was a few times in the book she repeated her self. Can not wait for the next book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Meggin Reno, NV, United States 04-02-11
    Meggin Reno, NV, United States 04-02-11 Member Since 2009

    Speaker, Coach, Author - in Reno, NV (A GREAT place!) I've been an avid Audible fan for several years. Listen on my iPhone many hours each week.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Back to top form"

    I have always loved the VI Warshawski books, but there were a couple that seemed not to be up to Paretsky's standard. This one, however - loved it! The narrator is excellent, as well. Can't wait for the next one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharon Cedar Park, TX, United States 02-17-11
    Sharon Cedar Park, TX, United States 02-17-11
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    "Terrible"

    I have listened to several of VI Warshawski novels and enjoyed them. I looked forward to listening to her latest novel but this was so bad I didn't even finish it. The storyline and narator were equally bad. Read the reviews and don't waste your money.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cathy E. Howe Bethel, Maine United States 12-18-10
    Cathy E. Howe Bethel, Maine United States 12-18-10 Member Since 2002

    Kindness Matters

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "My Last Sara Paretsky Book"

    I will not be purchasing any more of Ms. Paretsky's novels, after staying with her all through the V.I. Warshawski series. I do not want to be hit over the head with her one sided political agenda anymore. Other writers seem to manage making their views known without it interrupting the story to make the point. She does not seem capable of that, and I do not want to read it. It's not that I disagree with her, but the disparaging way in which she speaks of those who do not agree with her guarantees I will not be back. I get enough of that on the news. The narrator did a good job, though, so she gets the stars.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Santa Cruz, US, Canada 08-16-12
    Jennifer Santa Cruz, US, Canada 08-16-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "loved the characters, loved VI, loved Petra,"
    What did you love best about Body Work?

    Again Paretsky weaves the real world events into her book skillfully enough that we are captivated. The characters are believable and the performance extremely strong. Most of all, I like VI and all her introspection, her honesty, her growth as a human.


    What other book might you compare Body Work to and why?

    Hard Time had the same strengths, though perhaps not quite as buffed and polished. Paretsky gets better and better at making all of her strengths work together. This was a gem.


    What does Susan Ericksen bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The personalities came through, particularly the Body Artist and Olympia. Chad is as real as it gets, and I appreciated his parents' story as well.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Ali's diary


    Any additional comments?

    Just the usual. I want more!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BRENDA MESQUITE, TEXAS, United States 08-13-12
    BRENDA MESQUITE, TEXAS, United States 08-13-12 Member Since 2007
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    "Very Imaginative Narrrative"
    Would you listen to Body Work again? Why?

    I have already listened to it twice to make sure I caught everything that happened.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Yes, it was a very complicated plot--I back tracted several times to keep on top of things.


    Which character – as performed by Susan Ericksen – was your favorite?

    I like the way the main character V. I. Warsharski grow older as the years go by. Since she and I are close to the same age, I can really empathize with the descriptions. She is always my favorite character.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I especially enjoyed the relationship between V. I. and her "pesky" little niece. It was always gratifying when her niece would admit that V.I. was right about some things.


    Any additional comments?

    I am getting a little tired of books using their plots based around homosexuality to teach all of us the correct way to be. Personally I don't think a person's sexuality is anyone's business and doesn't need to be constantly discussed. People are who they are and their sexuality is only one aspect of a much larger whole.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert des plaines, IL, United States 01-11-11
    Robert des plaines, IL, United States 01-11-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Solid work all around"

    This was an interesting plot the whole way through - enough twists to stay engaged but not too many that it gets silly or cliche. I partially bought this book feeling a little homesick for Chicago, she does a good job portraying personalities that can be found there - and, like I said, it was a good story. Sometimes it seems that she drops place names simply to remind you it is in Chicago and there are the occasional geographic impossibilities. Though I might be a little extra critical since a lot of this story took place literally blocks from where I used to live - like I was picturing the actual buildings in some scenes trying to remember if where the doors were matched the storyline.

    The narrator did a really good job differentiating the different characters (though the young cousin was a little over the top "valley girl"-ish) and setting a mood for each situation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julia Tallahassee, FL, United States 01-03-11
    Julia Tallahassee, FL, United States 01-03-11 Member Since 2008
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    "Substandard narration"

    I have read all of Paretsky's books and enjoyed them, but reading this one 'audibly' was a mistake. The narrator did a real disservice to this book. The dialogue, as she read it, lacked the rhythm of normal speech and accents were exaggerated. It significantly distracted my attention away from the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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