George "Pitty Pitty" Patnik was a thief who thought he had everything planned for a nice, clean in-and-out burglary. But that was before he heard the screams and saw the blood. Before the long knife came down again and again. Before the murderer realized he had an audience.
Now Pitty-Pitty is on the run - from the clever Lieberman who has figured it all out, from the murderer, and from the awful memories of what he's seen.
©2008 Stuart Kaminsky; (P)2008 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
"Reader David Colacci makes all the right choices in his reading....Kaminsky's story is involving and character-driven, with a feel for their daily lives." (Library Journal)
Mr. Kaminsky has written four series, a total of at least 50 books. I have not liked the Toby Peters books, but the Rostnikov and Lieberman series are pure delights, and the Lew Fonesca books are fun, too, although Mr. Fonesca's sadness threatens to weigh us all down toward the grave. Lieberman and Rostnikov, though, are Mr. Kaminsky's finest work, and I have already re-read several of them, both in audio and in print. The Russian characters are so heartfelt and authentic that you believe that Russians must be just like them. Aside from Martin Cruz Smith, Mr. Kaminsky stands tallest among American writers depicting the Russian temperament and predicament. It seems to me that Mr. Kaminsky has stopped writing, which is a thing I truly regret. I look forward eagerly to each new book by Martin Cruz Smith. It would be a dream come true if Mr. Kaminsky could give us one more story about the characters he created, nurtured and loved over several decades.
What do you call a book about detectives where you know the thief and the murderer essentially from the outset? The only element of mystery might be motive, but that's not hard to figure out. It's kind of a character study of Abe, his partner Bill Hanrahan, and a wide swath of Chicago demographics, including blacks, hispanic gangs, working class Jews, crazy rabbis, anti-Semitic gentiles. Having lived in and around Chicago for about 6 years, I just loved these descriptions, but I can imagine that others might find the book without suspense or a bit too stylized. The often corny humor and old jokes are right on, helping people get through each day. Abe addresses Catholic Bill as "Father," and Bill addresses Jewish Abe as "Rabbi." With very different cultural histories, they always have each other's back.
The reading by Colacci enhances the pleasure of the writing. I will certainly read others in this series, but I fear he spoiled me for any other narrator.
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