RARA-AVIS: Fwd: Fw: Emailing: block-burglar_on_the_prowl.htm

From: Joseph Trifun ( asbdata@yahoo.com)
Date: 20 Feb 2008

Hello Avians !

Have you seen this movie ?

Joseph Trifun

--- jtrifun@optonline.net wrote:

> Date: Tue, 19 Feb 2008 20:45:38 -0500
> From: jtrifun@optonline.net
> Subject: Fw: Emailing: block-burglar_on_the_prowl.htm
> To: ASBDATA-YAHOO < asbdata@yahoo.com>
> Lawrence Block The Burglar on the Prowl Reviewed by Terry D'Auray
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: jtrifun@optonline.net
> To: JoeTrifun@optonline.net
> Sent: Tuesday, February 19, 2008 8:30 PM
> Subject: Emailing: block-burglar_on_the_prowl.htm
> Agony Column Home Agony Column Review Archive
> The Burglar on the Prowl
> Lawrence Block
> William Morrow/Harper Collins
> US Hardcover First
> ISBN: 0-06-019830-3
> Publication Date: March, 2004
> 293 Pages; $24.95
> Date Reviewed: April 12, 2004
> Reviewed by: Terry D'Auray © 2004
> Mystery
> 06-14-04
> Wm. Morrow includes a list of Lawrence Block's other novels in the front of
> his latest "burglar" book; the list fits on a single page only because it's
> printed in the same small type most often used only for "fine print"
> contractual details no one wants you to see. Fifteen Matt Scudder novels,
> masterful, old-school hardboiled detective stories; eight Evan Tanner
> sleepless spy stories; four Chip Harrison books, Block's ode to Rex Stout and
> Nero Wolfe; a couple of Keller heartless hit man novels; and numerous other
> novels, short story collections, anthologies, and how-to books for writers.
> Oh, and ten, "the burglar who" books, featuring literate looter Bernie
> Rhodenbarr. The burglar books are Block at play - playing with language,
> plot, character and credibility in the story telling and playing with the
> world in general - political, social and literary - in the wonderfully
> rambling stream of consciousness asides that are themselves worth the price
> of admission.
> If you've never read a burglar book, a little background is in order. Bernie
> Rhodenbarr is an antiquarian book dealer by day and a burglar by night. He's
> a man of exceptional taste, erudite, literate, sociable, voluble and
> exceptionally witty. Thievery is both his innate natural gift and the
> provider of his adrenaline-fueled natural highs. Burglary is a pastime he
> pursues with grand skill and only modest regret. "The fact that I evidently
> can't give it up doesn't mean I'm not well aware of the disagreeably sordid
> nature of what I do". Well, sordid maybe, but disagreeable, never. Bernie's
> thefts invariably lead him into unanticipated situations in which he must
> either solve a crime to save his ass, or solve a crime to put some other
> bigger, badder ass out of circulation. While Bernie's a criminal, he's not
> stealing purses from little old ladies. He filches from felons, or
> felons-in-waiting, and if, as occasionally happens, he makes a mistake and
> steals something from someone who ultimately doesn't deserve to have it
> stolen, well, he just puts it back.
> In 'The Burglar on the Prowl', Bernie is asked by his old friend Marty Gilman
> to steal cash from the safe of a New York plastic surgeon, Crandall Roundtree
> Mapes, most often referred to as That Shitheel. The motive for Gilman's
> request is simple. That Shitheel has swiped his mistress and sweet revenge is
> the only salve. Just before taking care of the Shitheel break-in, Bernie,
> inexplicably antsy, goes on the prowl, breaking into the apartment of a
> female NY attorney who's awkwardly in the midst of a date rape. Bernie's
> awkwardly hiding under the bed for that event, and after the rapist leaves,
> he carefully replaces everything he's just stolen (except for a bit of cash),
> figuring the woman's had enough bad luck for one night. Block, making liberal
> use of the "long arm of coincidence", weaves roofies (the date rape drug),
> Latvia, the Black Scourge of Riga, NY mobsters, LBD (lesbian bed death), cops
> and other (non-Rhodenbarr) robbers into a wildly implausible and utterly
> delightful romp.
> Block surrounds Bernie with a lively cast of recurring supporting characters;
> Caroline the loquacious lesbian dog-groomer and Bernie's best friend; Ray
> Kirshmann, the donut-snarfing not-so-dumb cop, and Raffles, his bookstore's
> Manx. And as with his other burglar stories, Block gives the reader not only
> the crime and its solution, but also an extra-credit smorgasbord of cleverly
> written riffs on this and that. A little history (Latvia's quest for
> independence), a little architecture (New York's brownstones), a little
> geography (the Bronx versus Manhattan), riffs on burglary and riffs on riffs
> themselves. All that, plus the always amusing and eagerly anticipated spoof
> of another contemporary mystery writer. Here, John Sanford's the target, with
> his new novel about a guy killing vegetarians called 'Lettuce Prey'. Every
> story is thickly infused with New York since Block's Rhodenbarr delights in
> the offbeat nooks and crannies ("or crannies and nooks") of New York, the
> city's eccentric characters, its subways, take-out deli's and bars.
> Block's burglar books zip along with great humor, clever language ("as
> felonious as a monk") and wild doings wittily described. He writes playful,
> engaging and enjoyable stories of absolutely no significance, literary or
> otherwise, whatsoever. But they're frolicking good fun. Lawrence Block at
> play is a show well worth the price of a ticket.

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