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The men in the tan-and-cream Chrysler came with guns blazing. When Ray woke up in the hospital a month later, he was missing an eye, and his father was dead. Then things started to get bad...From the incomparable Donald E. Westlake comes a devastating story of betrayal and revenge, exploring the limits of family loyalty and how far a man will go when everything he loves is taken from him.
The multi-award-winning, widely-acclaimed mystery master Donald E. Westlake delivers a masterpiece with this brilliant, laser-sharp tale of the deadly consequences of corporate downsizing.Burke Devore is a middle-aged manager at a paper company when the cost-cutting ax falls, and he is laid off. Eighteen months later and still unemployed, he puts a new spin on his job search -- with agonizing care, Devore finds the seven men in the surrounding area who could take the job that rightfully should be his, and systematically kills them. Transforming himself from mild-mannered middle manager to ruthless murderer, he discovers skills ne never knew ne had -- and that come to him far too easily.
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.
BUT SERIOUSLY, FOLKS.The year is 1977, and America is finally getting over the nightmares of Watergate and Vietnam and the national hangover that was the 1960s. But not everyone is ready to let it go. Not aging comedian Koo Davis, friend to generals and presidents and veteran of countless USO tours to buck up American troops in the field. And not the five remaining members of the self-proclaimed People's Revolutionary Army, who've decided that kidnapping Koo Davis would be the perfect way to bring their cause back to life...The final, previously unpublished novel from the legendary Donald Westlake!
SOME PEOPLE WILL DO ANYTHING FOR MONEYMavis 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.
In 1874, The gang boss in New York City had Gabe put on a train and said, "Just keep going west until your hat floats." After six months of life in San Francisco, Gabe thinks the western city just might have possibilities. New friends, a special girlfriend, and the U.S. Gold mint help to bring him to this new view of the city. If he could successfully relieve that mint of it's gold, he'd have it made in the west.
In Donald E. Westlake's classic caper novels, the bad get better, the good slide a bit, and Lord help anyone caught between a thief named John Dortmunder and the current object of his attention. However, being caught red-handed is inevitable in Dortmunder's next production, when a TV producer convinces this thief and his merry gang to do a reality show that captures their next score. The producer guarantees to find a way to keep the show from being used in evidence against them. They're dubious, but the pay is good, so they take him up on his offer. A mock-up of the OJ bar is built in a warehouse down on Varick Street . The ground floor of that building is a big open space jumbled with vehicles used in TV world, everything from a news truck and a fire engine to a hansom cab (without the horse). As the gang plans their next move with the cameras rolling, Dortmunder and Kelp sneak onto the roof of their new studio to organize a private enterprise. It will take an ingenious plan to outwit viewers glued to their television sets, but Dortmunder is nothing if not persistent, and he's determined to end this shoot with money in his pockets.
As Fred Fitch careers across the New York City landscape - and sometimes skyline - in his meetings with cops, con men, beautiful girls, and (maybe) murderers, he takes on some of the loonier aspects of a Dante without a Virgil.
Critically acclaimed for his recent bestseller, "The Ax, " Westlake returns with a tale of twisted psychological suspense involving two cunning authors--and one deadly proposition.
Edgar Award nominee: Fresh out of prison, John Dortmunder plans a heist that could mean war in this thriller by Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Donald E. Westlake John Dortmunder leaves jail with ten dollars, a train ticket, and nothing to make money on but his good name. Thankfully, his reputation goes far. No one plans a caper better than Dortmunder. His friend Kelp picks him up in a stolen Cadillac and drives him away from Sing-Sing, telling a story of a $500,000 emerald that they just have to steal. Dortmunder doesn't hesitate to agree. The emerald is the crown jewel of a former British colony, lately granted independence and split into two nations: one for the Talabwo people, one for the Akinzi. The Akinzi have the stone, the Talabwo want it back, and their UN representative offers a fine payday to the men who can get it. It's not a simple heist, but after a few years in stir, Dortmunder could use the challenge.
Taking cues from a pulp novel, Dortmunder arranges a kidnappingKelp has a plan, and John Dortmunder knows that means trouble. His friend Kelp is a jinx, and his schemes, no matter how well intentioned, tend to spiral quickly out of control. But this one, Kelp swears, is airtight. He read it in a book. In county lock-up for a traffic charge, Kelp came across a library of trashy novels by an author named Richard Stark. The hero is a thief named Parker whose plans, unlike Kelp and Dortmunder's, always work out. In one, Parker orchestrates a kidnapping so brilliant that, Kelp thinks, it would have to work in real life. Though offended that his usual role as planner has been usurped, Dortmunder agrees to try using the novel as a blueprint. Unfortunately, what's simple on the page turns complex in real life, and there is no book to guide him through the madness he's signed on for.
In Uganda in 1977, a particular trainload of coffee, mostly belonging to dictator Idi Amin, is worth six million dollars. As a group of scoundrels and international financiers hijack the train, the double and triple crosses pile up and the comic tension escalates in a brawling brew of buffoons, bumblers, beans and boxcars.
THE CRIME WAS OVER IN A MINUTE - THE CONSQUENCES LASTED A LIFETIMEHospitalized 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 even to 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.
Once a month they came in the mail. As regular as clockwork. Addressed to Josh Redmont. Issued by something called "United States Agent." Each check for the exact same amount: $1000. At first, Josh tried to find out if some mistake had been made. After a while, he simply accepted that for unknowable reasons some obscure, untraceable branch of the U.S. government was paying him $1000 a month. A poor temp when the checks first appeared seven years ago, Josh has now become successful in his field, with a wife and child, a nice Upper West Side apartment, a summer rental on Fire Island - so the checks don't mean that much anymore. That is, until a smiling stranger approaches Josh with words that chill him to the spine: "I'm from United States Agent. You are now active." Josh has been paid for a job that he now must do... a job that will turn out to be a growing horror for him, for his family, and possibly for all of us.
An art collector hires Dortmunder to steal one of his own paintingsIt would take a miracle to keep Dortmunder out of jail. Though he cased the electronics store perfectly, the cops surprised him, turning up in the alley just as he was walking out the back door, a television in each hand. Already a two-time loser, without divine intervention he faces a long stretch inside. Then God sends J. Radcliffe Stonewiler, a celebrity lawyer who gets Dortmunder off with hardly any effort at all. Stonewiler was sent by Arnold Chauncey, an art lover with a cash flow problem. He asks the thief to break into his house and make off with a valuable painting in exchange for a quarter of the insurance money. Chauncey has pulled the stunt twice before, so it must look real. He'll give Dortmunder no inside help--a shame since, when this caper spins out of control, he'll need all the help he can get.
Francis Xavier Meehan (Meehan to his friends, "Halt!" to the cops) has ten thousand rules to live by, but only one way to make a living: stealing. Then a man in a checked jacket from Washington comes to meet Meehan in the Manhattan Correctional Center with an offer Meehan cannot refuse. For somewhere out there is an October Surprise that may dethrone the sitting president of the United States. The Washington man wants Meehan to steal the incriminating evidence and keep the president's secret in the dark. What Meehan gets out of the deal is his freedom - and maybe a little something on the side. What the president gets is another term in the White House - instead of one in jail. Yet on the plane ride down to meet more guys from Washington (but with better suits), the well-thought-out plan begins to unravel. The problem Meehan faces is that no one in Washington can keep a lip buttoned - and a bunch of politicos, spies, and thugs are leaking trouble his way. Suddenly it seems that Meehan's mission is about to go the way of Watergate. There's only one difference: This time they chose the right guy for the job. Hail to the thief!
An infamous gang of wayward thieves, led by the unlucky and unflagging John Dortmunder, has hatched another perfect plan. They'll dress up as a personal secretary, a driver, and a butler, and go to work for a very rich-and very crooked-man, and rob him blind. The con is on! The mark is Monroe Hall, a very corrupt CEO. The loot? A fleet of vintage automobiles that would leave the Sultan of Brunei blushing. The catch? Trying to outsmart a collection of angry union men who've been taken for a ride and blue-blooded suckers who've been taken for their family fortunes.
Due to a foiled burglary in a high-tech lab doing research for cigarette manufacturers, Freddie Noon, the thief, is now invisible. This condition has clear-cut advantages for a man in Freddie's profession, but now everybody wants a glimpse of Freddie. But Freddie doesn't dare show his face, his shadow, anything. Because Freddie Noon has gotten a taste of invisibility--and he can't quit now.
SOMETIMES WINNING FEELS AN AWFUL LOT LIKE LOSING.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 - but just try explaining that to the cops, to the two rival criminal gangs who each think Chet's working for the other, and to the dead man's beautiful sister, who has flown in from Las Vegas to avenge her brother's murder...
On a literary landscape filled with cunning criminal masterminds, Donald E. Westlake's John Dortmunder is in a league of his own. With no scam too outrageous to contemplate, and no plan too simple to go wrong, this quirky career thief has stolen everything from money buried under a reservoir to a bank-the whole bank. Now the ultimate repeat offender returns in a first-time collection of short stories that prove that just like bagels and donuts, with Dortmunder it's always better by the dozen ... Thieves' Dozen
Dortmunder's old friend and trusted fence Arnie Albright is onto the score of a lifetime: easy access to one of the most lavish apartments in New York. The owner had to skip town, leaving behind a horde of valuables. But when John, Arnie, and the gang round up to plan the heist, they find their beloved gin joint-the OJ-in the mob's clutches. The Mafia plan to use it as a "bustout joint," before closing up shop, courtesy some arson. For tactical reasons, the fate of the OJ is even more important to the crew than the enormous score. Dortmunder and crew are determined to split time, fighting the mob and robbing the rich simultaneously.
In his classic caper novels, Donald E. Westlake turns the world of crime and criminals upside down. The bad get better, the good slide a bit, and Lord help anyone caught between a thief named John Dortmunder and the current object of his intentions. Now Westlake's seasoned but often scoreless crook must take on an impossible crime, one he doesn't want and doesn't believe in. But a little blackmail goes a long way in... WHAT'S SO FUNNY? All it takes is a few underhanded moves by a tough ex-cop named Eppick to pull Dortmunder into a game he never wanted to play. With no choice, he musters his always-game gang and they set 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, which unfortunately reached Russia after that party was over. From the moment Dortmunder reaches for his first pawn, he faces insurmountable odds. The purloined past of this precious set is destined to confound any strategy he finds on the board. Success is not inevitable with John Dortmunder leading the attack, but he's nothing if not persistent, and some gambit or other might just stumble into a winning move.
It started with a ring. A cheap ring. The yellow metal said brass, not gold, and the sparkly bits were certainly not diamonds. But the ring belonged to May's horseplaying uncle, who swore it brought good luck. Dortmunder, who wouldn't kick a little good luck out of bed, puts it to the test when he goes to burglarize Long Island billionaire Max Fairbanks. As luck would have it, Dortmunder is greeted by Fairbanks himself - and a loaded gun - as soon as he strolls through the door. When the cops arrive, the mogul adds insult to injury by claiming that Dortmunder's lucky ring is actually his. Big mistake, big guy. As soon as Dortmunder can give the cops the slip, the world's most single-minded burglar goes after the fat cat with a vengeance and a team of crooks that only he can assemble. And from the get go everything will go Dortmunder's way - everything, that is, except the ring.
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