RARA-AVIS: The value of work

From: Larson, Craig ( Craig.Larson@tsjc.cccoes.edu)
Date: 10 Apr 2001

Just thought I'd make my own feeble contribution to the theme. I finished Lawrence Block's _Hit List_ last night, an interesting, often very funny, book about a hitman named Keller. Near the end of the book, Keller actually takes time out from his work to perform jury duty and is selected to serve. He is impaneled (sp?) for a case involving a stolen VCR that was sold to an undercover policeman. During his weekends away from the case, which lasts a couple of weeks, he makes trips to Baltimore, casing a hit, and actually performs the hit while there on a weekend trip. Later, after the trial ends, the woman who sends him on his hits points out the irony of his performing a hit while at the same time serving on the jury and Keller can't see it. According to his point of view, the hit is his "job" and serving on the jury is his "duty." Admittedly, the book isn't all that hardboiled, but it is an interesting addition to this subgenre of crime fiction (see also Loren D. Estleman's Macklin books and Max Allan Collin's Quarry series--any others I'm leaving out?).

Craig Larson Trinidad, CO

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