It was supposed to be a simple caviar heist. Dortmunder is almost in the building when the alarm sounds, forcing him up the fire escape and onto the roof. He leaps onto the next building, smashing his ankle and landing in the den of the worst kind of creature he can imagine: nuns.
"One of the best in the Dortmunder series."
John Dortmunder and company are hired by an U.N. African Ambassador to steal the famed Balabomo Emerald from the hands of a rival African country. But their daring and clever burglarly goes awry, and the emerald slips through their fingers. Undaunted, Dortmunder chases the gem by plane, train and automobile in hot pursuit of the hot rock.
"Dortmunder is on his game in this fun introduction"
Eluding the law has always been high on Dortmunder's list. But getting caught red-handed is inevitable in his next caper, when a TV producer convinces this thief and his merry gang to star in a reality show that captures their next score. The producer even guarantees to keep the show from being used as evidence against them. They're dubious at first, but the pay's good, so they sign on.
"Westlake's best book"
The Byzantine Fire is much more than a flawless ninety-carat ruby. As a stone it's worth over a million dollars, a value vastly increased by its pure gold band - but its history is what makes it priceless. A ring that has been fought for with sword and pen and passed from nation to nation by all manner of theft and trickery, has finally made its way to the United States. The US agrees to return it to Turkey, but it's about to be stolen twice more.
"Another delightful mis-adventure."
With the help of an unusual set of cronies, bank robber John Dortmunder puts a set of wheels under a trailer that just happens to be the temporary site of the Capitalists' & Immigrants' Trust and hauls it away. But when the safe won't open and the cops get close, Dortmunder realizes he's got to find a place to ditch the "bank".
"great story - well narrated!!!"
John Dortmunder doesn't like manual labor. So when he gets the offer of money to dig up a grave, he balks . . . then he wonders why Fitzroy Guilderpost, criminal mastermind, wants to pull a switcheroo of two 70-years-dead Indians.
"Twisted plot about twisted characters."
John Dortmunder and his merry band of crooks return to the scene of the crime world in an attempt to steal a fleet of automobiles that would leave the Sultan of Brunei blushing. The mark is Monroe Hall, corrupt CEO of a now defunct conglomerate, who spent more of his company's money on himself than the boys at Enron and WorldCom combined. Having escaped prosecution, Hall is holed up on his Pennsylvania farm, and Dortmunder, as usual, has his eyes on the big prize: Hall's vintage wheels.
Meehan, a career thief staring at life without parole, is awaiting sentencing at the Manhattan Correctional Center when he is called to a meeting by someone masquerading as his lawyer. The man, it turns out, represents the presidential reelection campaign committee now finding itself in need of a little professional help. So they outsource Meehan in return for a walk from all pending criminal charges.
Mavis St. Paul had been a rich man's mistress. Now she was a corpse. And every cop in New York City was hunting for the two-bit punk accused of putting a knife in her. But the punk was innocent. He'd been set up to take the fall by some cutie who was too clever by half. My job? Find that cutie - before the cutie found me.
"King of Noir Crime Pulp!!!"
All it takes is a few underhanded moves by a tough ex-cop named Eppick to pull thief John Dortmunder into a game he never wanted to play. With no choice, he sets out on a perilous treasure hunt for a long-lost gold and jewel-studded chess set once intended as a birthday gift for the last Romanov czar. Success is not inevitable with Dortmunder leading the attack, but he's nothing if not persistent, and some gambit or other might just stumble into a winning move.
"Dufris is a marvel!"
What, you ask, is a Fred Fitch? Well, for one thing, Fred Fitch is the man with the most extensive collection of fake receipts, phony bills of sale, and counterfeit sweepstakes tickets in the Western hemisphere, and possibly in the entire world. For another thing, Fred Fitch may be the only New York City resident in the twentieth century to buy a money machine.
"American Gods for the Grifter set!"
It's the score of a lifetime: easy access to a lavish New York City apartment, hordes of valuables, and an absentee owner avoiding the lawyers of his unhappy ex-wives. But before they pull the job, Dortmunder's crew is startled to find their beloved gin joint, the OJ, in the clutches of the Mafia--who consider it perfect for a little fraud, courtesy of a nice big fire. For tactical and highly superstitious reasons, the fate of the OJ is even more important to the crew than the enormous score.
"Dortmunder is Fun"
Al Engel had worked his way up to being Nick Rovito’s right-hand man, near the top of the syndicate. And this was a delicate job that Rovito had given him: retrieving a very important jacket, loaded with heroin, from the fresh grave of the drug mule who was accidentally buried wearing it. There was just one problem (at least - just one to begin with): It turned out the grave was empty. Suddenly Engel was the one finding himself “in deep”.
"Great characters! Fun twist!"
The men in the tan-and-cream Chrysler came with guns blazing. When Ray Kelly woke up in the hospital, it was a month later, he was missing an eye, and his father was dead. Then things started to get bad. From the mind of the incomparable Donald E. Westlake comes a devastating story of betrayal and revenge, an exploration of the limits of family loyalty and how far a man will go when everything he loves is taken from him.
"Nice and hard-boiled."
Specialist in the scam, the con, and the rip-off, Jerry Manelli is running around New York hot on the trail of a priest: a thousand-year-old, two-foot-tall, ugly, misshapen, dancing Aztec priest made of solid gold, with eyes of pure emeralds, worth a million dollars. Somebody stole it from its museum home in South America and smuggled it through U.S. Customs in a shipment of plastic imitations. But the wrong one got delivered, and the million dollar statue, mixed with the fifteen copies, is somewhere in New York.
"Not ideal for casual listening"
Cab driver Chet Conway was hoping for a good tip from his latest fare, the sort he could spend. But what he got was a tip on a horse race; which might have turned out okay, except that when he went to collect his winnings, Chet found his bookie lying dead on the living room floor. Chet knows he had nothing to do with it.
"Great reading of a hilarious novel"
Intrepid reporter Sara Joslyn, having escaped the clutches of the supermarket tabloid Weekly Galaxy, is finally going to be allowed to practice "clean journalism." Unfortunately, intrepid editor Jack Ingersoll has other plans, assigning her to a gory sex-murder trial in Branson, Missouri, home to more country stars than there are in the heavens. While delving into the muck, rake in hand, Sara runs into her old comrades from the Galaxy - Binx Radwell, Boy Cartwright, and the Down Under Trio among them. At the eye of this journalistic cyclone is country musician Ray Jones; is he guilty of the grisly murder, and what else is he up to?
"Have heard better"
Hospitalized after a liaison with another man's wife ends in violence, Paul Cole has just one goal: to rebuild his shattered life. But with his memory damaged, the police hounding him, and no way to even get home, Paul's facing steep odds - and a bleak fate if he fails. This final, never-before-published novel by three-time Edgar Award winner Donald E. Westlake is a noir masterpiece, a dark and painful portrait of a man's struggle against merciless forces that threaten to strip him of his very identity.
"The accident of existence"
Arriving home at dawn after another failed burglary, John Dortmunder - the anti-hero of Donald Westlake's popular comic crime series - is shocked to find his apartment occupied by a notorious cellmate everyone had supposed (and hoped) had been jailed for life.
"Good book. Bad, BAD, BAAAD performance"
What would it take to lure a serious young newswoman from a respectable New England paper to the most notorious supermarket tabloid in America? The call of journalistic adventure? How about a promise of a salary that's triple what she's making? En route to her new job at the Weekly Galaxy, Sara Joslyn stumbles across a bloody corpse in a Buick Riviera. A big story? Not at this paper. The problem is compounded when the dead man vanishes, Buick and all.