The Burglar in the Closet by Lawrence Block

From hard-boiled private eye to burglar-turned-sleuth, Lawrence Block can enchant all varieties of mystery lovers.

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The Burglar in the Closet by Lawrence Block


Features

  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.90 x 6.85 x 4.18
  • Publisher: Signet; (February 1997)
  • ISBN: 0451180747


    Reader Reviews
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful: Burglary Isn't All It's Cracked Up to Be!, May 3, 2003 Reviewer: Don Mitchell from a management consultant in Boston Lawrence Block is one of our most talented mystery authors. In the Bernie Rhodenbarr series he explores out an ordinary, but intelligent, "honest" person might go about pursuing a life of crime as a fastidious and talented burglar who isn't proud of what he does, doesn't like to hang out with criminals, and really gets a big thrill out of breaking and entering . . . and removing valuables. As you can see, there's a sitcom set-up to provide lots of humor. But the humor works well in part because Mr. Block is able to put the reader in the Bernie's shoes while he breaks, enters and steals . . . and evades the long arm of the law. To balance the "honest" burglar is an array of "dishonest" and equally easy-money loving cops. As a result, you're in a funny moral never-never land while your stomach tightens and your arm muscles twitch as tension builds. To make matters even more topsy-turvy, Bernie at some point in every story turns into an investigator who must figure out "who-dun-it" for some crime that he personally didn't do. It's almost like one of those "mystery at home" games where the victim comes back as the police investigator, playing two roles. Very nice! So much for explaining the concept of the series. The Burglar in the Closet is the second book in the series. I strongly suggest that you begin the series by reading Burglars Can't Be Choosers. Each story in the series adds information and characters in a way that will reduce your pleasure of the others if read out of order. Although, I originally read them out of order and liked them well enough. I'm rereading them now in order, and like it much better this way. The Burglar Who Liked to Quote Kipling comes next in the series. As Stephen King likes to point out, a great way to start a book is to put a character in an unusual situation and then let things happen from there. The Burglar in the Closet certainly follows that route in a successful manner with what reads and feels like a very realistic (and hilarious to think about) burglary experience. The complications soon start coming from all directions like sharpened spears, and Bernie's ducking before one of them hits him! Along the way you'll meet The World's Greatest Dentist and his hygienist, some remarkably vivid barflies, and visit again with the brilliant, but bent cop, Ray Kirschmann from Burglars Can't Be Choosers. Bernie gets accused of just about everything but what he actually did, and as before, straightens matters out through his own investigation. I thought that the identity of the more serious criminal was pretty obvious, but the plot develops in such a witty, charming way that I didn't really mind. The plot is pretty complicated, and will keeep you on your toes . . . so pay attention! This book is definitely a step up from Burglars Can't Be Choosers and really establishes the series as a solid one for fans of off-beat mysteries. As I read this book, I was reminded of Murphy's Law (anything that can go wrong, will). Most of the unpleasant situations in our lives come about because we ignore Mr. Murphy. This book will certainly remind you to think through what could go wrong . . . before you go ahead. Donald Mitchell Co-author of The 2,000 Percent Solution, The Irresistible Growth Enterprise and The Ultimate Competitive Advantage

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