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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)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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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 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Xavier
  • Los Angeles, CA, United States
  • 05-05-17

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.

1 of 1 people found this review 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.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Great story!

Loved following Easy's story. Through the author I was able to see all the details of Easu's encounters. Will recommend to my friends.

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i like the story

this book is fun to read. i enjoyed it. i world highly recommended.
great story line

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  • Theresa
  • Memphis, TN, United States
  • 08-22-12

A good listen!

I liked the few Easy Rawlins' audiobooks I have purchased including Black Betty especially after the defect in the audio was fixed.

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Elegant and wise

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. Its careful crafting of plot, character and language take you deep into its moment in history, while maintaining a broad human perspective. It is a detective book fashioned out of literary fabric.<br/>

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Some boyhood memories can move men.

Any additional comments?

Mosley is among the most sophisticated writers in America's ongoing quest to formulate its complex narrative of race. Easy Rawlins speaks on many levels, in many voices, tweaking the assumptions of many audiences. Mosley will be on the classics bookshelf forever.

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  • Danielle
  • Chamblee, GA, United States
  • 12-19-11

Great Read!

Would you listen to Black Betty again? Why?

Yes. It was suspenseful, intriguing, and entertaining!

Which character – as performed by Michael Boatman – was your favorite?

Easy Rawlings is always my favorite. Mouse is second in line.

Any additional comments?

Walter Mosley is an exceptional author. I love just about all of his work!

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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.