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Thriller & Noir


Leonard Chang


Black Heron



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Leonard Chang is the creator of Allen Choice, a Korean-American security expert turned private eye who has so far appeared in three novels, Over the Shoulder (2001), Underkill (2003) and Fade to Clear (2009), a USA Today Summer Reading Pick and a Finalist for the Shamus Award. His first two novels, The Fruit 'N Food and Dispatches from the Cold, garnered much praise for their deft handling of racial tension, thwarted dreams and existentialist angst. For The Fruit 'N Food, he won the Black Heron ...





Jake Ahn, the Korean American star of this immensely entertaining novel, is a thief, burglar, and safecracker— in short, the sort of charismatic scoundrel one would meet in a Hitchcock movie. But Jake hates talk like that. ‘ Reality is brutal,’ he says, and demonstrates.  Jake shoots his former partner, Bobby Null, after the latter betrays him in Seattle, and runs off to San Francisco (with a backpack containing $8,755 in cash) to hide with his brother, Eugene, with whom he’s had a rocky relationship dating back to childhood. Here’s where Chang carefully darkens his story without compromising the relentless plotting. Jake’s brother is a disaster in his job and his marriage, and his desirable wife hooks up, in all senses, with Jake. As Jake’s sad brother is catching on, the mentally unstable Bobby luckily survives the bullet in his gut and embarks on a quest for revenge. The result is a violent convergence of events…


"...the restrained and exquisite writing gradually builds the suspense to the climax. Replete with details about picking locks and peppered with philosophical discussions, Chang's eighth novel is recommended for all readers of intelligent crime fiction." - Library Journal Shonda Buchanan for LARB "Entertaining and with a well-paced literary style, this simple crime story becomes something more memorable..." - Foreword  "...beautifully choreographed violence that manages to be witty and thoughtful through all the mayhem." - Booklist "...blunt and often brutal... Fans of hard-boiled and caper novels will be satisfied." - Publishers Weekly


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