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Publisher's Summary

Detective Easy Rawlins returns in a mystery set in 1961 Los Angeles as Easy accepts a job searching for a beautiful woman nicknamed Black Betty who works as a housekeeper in Beverly Hills.
Hear more of Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins mysteries.
©2002 Walter Mosley (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Mosley's distinctive black investigator, Easy Rawlins, has moved from Watts to West L.A. with his two adopted children, but trouble still follows him. Hired to locate a sultry female acquaintance from his early days in Houston, Easy searches for her gambler brother and questions her Beverly Hills employer, unwittingly provoking racist police harassment. Meanwhile, friend Raymond ("Mouse") has been released from prison and vows revenge on the snitch who put him there. Mosley, as usual, describes a historically correct ethos in deft, literate prose." ( Library Journal)

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What listeners say about Black Betty

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I'm already looking fwd 2 my next "Easy" adventure

Colorful characters from the inner city. Insight into life in Los Angeles inner city life from the perspective of a patriotic African American veteran of WWII who lives life in the "gray". He knows life is not clear cut "black and white" on moral issues living in a community that is still steeped in the traditions of America's previous 400 years. He has the heart of "Sir Lancelot" but he knows he does not live in "Camelot". He helps people and he hurts people as a pseudo private detective. He works with the "establishment" and he breaks the rules and would be treated an outlaw if caught breaking the rules of law when he sees a higher moral justification. I love other genre's such as counterespionage, detective, adventure and historical fiction but I find the "Easy Rawlins" series so comfortably enjoyable. It reminds me of past characters in my early life in the 50's and 60's before leaving the south side of Chicago, going off to college in small town Iowa and subsequently becoming a officer in the USMC during the final two years of the Vietnam War era. I really find this series so enjoyable and I regret the books in this series are less than 10 hours long. I wish they were 16 to 24 hours long so I could enjoy a longer story.

4 people found this helpful

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persumej1

I love Walter Mosley, and Black Betty did not let me down. It was a great Easy Rawlins contuation. great book.

2 people found this helpful

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Beyond dark with unecessary foul language

This review is written purely from my own likes and biases which may, or may not, agree with your own.

The narrator missed the mark here. I felt like he wasn't interested in the book as he was reading it. There is a difference between reading dialogue from a dark, sullen character and reading with seeming disinterest. This is a shame since the narrator is a talented actor with the ability to "act" this book better.

The book itself starts off VERY slowly. Having previous knowledge of the character Easy Rawlins may have helped. The beginning of the book seems to be dragging out a character development that could have happened faster. Easy Rawlins is not a likable character and most of his interactions are with equally distasteful characters. Easy reluctantly lumbers through life as if the very act of living is both tedious and painful. This book doesn't just teeter on the edge of despair, but gleefully wallows in the deepest depths. I am able to enjoy dark novels, but this one seems to be trying too hard to reach a new low in hopelessness.

I was disappointed by the amount of foul language in this book. It seemed to be purposely peppered within the text as if the author was trying to fill a quota. I did not read the entire book. In fact, I removed the book from my device before I reached the halfway point.

This is definitely not a book for everyone. However, if you like books filled with crushing melancholy then you should check this one out.

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accidently found this book

I am very glad I did. I would highly recommend it. Hurt for the characters and cheered for them at the same time.

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Excellent Read

Boatman was incredible and the story was even better. Walter Mosley never disappoints. Highly recommended.

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Black Betty by Walter Mosely

Mr. Mosley is an excellent writer and Mr. Boatman vividly brings the characters to life

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Easy Evolves!!!!

Black Betty in its own way is one of the best of the "Easy Rawlings" stories that I have read so far! Keeping its mix of late fifties and early sixties insight into the makeup of African American Culture "Black Betty" keeps you on the move and ends up surprising you in the end. I am starting to believe that there is only one sure thing with Easy Rawlins and that is that "Mouse" got to kill somebody!! Michael Boatman is again masterful in his presentation!

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Awesome!

Very good. Keeps you on the edge of your seat. Favorite one of the ones I've listened to.

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An Easy B For WM’s 4th Rawlins Tale

I read a bunch hate before reading this episode in the life of Ezekiel Rawlins, so I was prepared to be disappointed. It was not so. The one disappointment was Mouse’s cardboard role. WM usually better shows the balance between Raymond Alexander’s sociopathy and his value as Easy’s best and oldest friend. In this one, any positive comments by Easy about his friend seemed wooden; Mouse is just plain gray killer impatient for Easy to point him to his next victim. Perhaps this story holds more sadness than others but it is a well woven and entertaining mystery. The predominant hate in reviews arises from those who don’t want to hear the true story of the black persons’s plight in 1960’s LA (and America). That a “colored” man could be gunned down by a cop for breathing the same air back then is a terrible but true thing. To not want to know about it reminds me of an ostrich. Editorial: That said, there are many reasons to be proud of the current state of affairs in America, regardless of the fake cause that BLM and its ilk makes their money on today. I’d love to read a WM story with Juice Rawlins as a second gen. P.I. bumping up against the false narrative and failed policies of the liberal “plantation owners” of the current era (a detective Candace Owens,) since All Lives Matter in the 21st C.

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Too Much

There were far too many deaths for my liking- got a bit unrealistic to me

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  • Mike
  • 12-23-12

Facinating

I read this because John Grisham mentioned the author in the Racketeer. I have found this and other Walter Mosley books very interesting. They have provided me with new insights.