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Hard Time [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio Cassette]

Sara Paretsky , Liza Ross
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
Price: 47.50 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

1 April 2000
This work once again features the determined and passionate sleuth V.I. Warshawski. Here prison life and the entertainment industry merge when Murray Ryerson - a fellow investigator and friend of Warshawski, is assaulted and left for dead.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: ISIS Audio Books; Unabridged edition (1 April 2000)
  • ISBN-10: 0753108410
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753108413
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,486,683 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sara Paretsky is the author of nineteen books, including sixteen V.I. Warshawski novels. She was named 2011 Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America and is the winner of many awards, including the Cartier Diamond Dagger Award for lifetime achievement from the British Crime Writers' Association and the CWA Gold Dagger for BLACKLIST.

Visit Sara's website, www.saraparetsky.com, find her on Facebook, www.facebook.com/SaraParetsky, and follow her on Twitter @Sara1982P.

Product Description

Amazon Review

V.I. Warshawski, Sara Paretsky's tough-talking, dog-loving, justice-seeking private investigator, has been missing in action since 1994, when she ratted out a big city political scandal on the streets of Chicago in Tunnel Vision. But now our Vic is back for her ninth adventure--a wee bit older, a tad more jaded and as broke as ever. It all begins when Warshawski weasels an invitation to the hottest event in town, a glitzy party celebrating television's brightest new star, Lacey Dowell, or, as she's better known, the Mad Virgin. Vic's old pal (and one-time fling) Murray Ryerson now works for Global Enterprises, the corporate giant behind the Lacey sensation. On the way back from the party Vic almost runs over a woman lying in the middle of the road, her Mad Virgin t-shirt soaked in blood from an earlier beating. The victim, Nicola Aguinaldo, dies in hospital, and Vic quickly realises that a particularly nasty cop, Detective Lemour, intends to frame her for vehicular homicide. Her anger at these absurd charges hits boiling point when Nicola's body disappears from the morgue before an autopsy can be carried out. Why was this woman, an escapee from the local Coolis prison, so important to Lemour? And why does the whole Mad Virgin phenomenon smell so rotten? "I didn't want to dive into Nicola Aguinaldo's wreck," V.I. grouses, "but it felt as though someone had climbed up behind me on the high board to give me a shove." In her search for answers, Warshawski runs afoul of Global Enterprises magnate Edmund Trant and Robert Baladine, the head honcho of the nation's biggest security firm. They have enough clout to have V.I. thrown into Coolis for another crime she did not commit. But incarceration gives the resourceful Vic a perfect opportunity to snoop into Nicola's last days there--and uncover a sensational scandal.

As she has done throughout the series, Paretsky brilliantly juxtaposes strikingly different environments. Here she contrasts the dilapidated environs of the jail with the exorbitant homes of Chicago's filthy rich. In fact, readers who have anxiously awaited V.I. Warshawski's return will be glad to find that little has changed in her world. Mitch and Peppy the wonder dogs are as endearing as ever, her landlord, Mr. Contreras is his normal fearless self, and V.I. is victorious. It really is like returning home. --Naomi Gesinger --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly the best VI novel yet? 14 Nov 2001
By A Customer
I found this to be the most compelling of all the VI novels. Admittedly I was reading it while I was on holiday when I had little else to think about, but I found I couldn't put it down - I just had to know what was going to happen next! In her earlier books, VI is an unlikeable character but she seems to be mellowing with age making her easier to sympathise with. It's nice to come back to a cast of familiar characters after all this time without VI, and I'd definitely recommend it to anyone who's read the previous stories. However, it also manages not to alienate the new reader by requiring previous knowledge of the characters. An excellent comeback.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By S. Pope
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Sara Paretsky kept fans waiting in suspense for VI Warshawski's latest case while she experimented with Ghost Country, a break away from blue-collar crime fiction. However, the wait has been worthwhile as she has produced a novel that not only is gripping but also tinged with sadness and uncertainty on the part of heroine VI.
Paretsky has allowed VI to age appropriately since the last time we saw her, which is not always the case with writers of serial characters. VI is still financially unstable, single without a partner and becoming rather disillusioned with what her life stands for. She watches as former brother-in-arms Murray Ryerson joins media stardom by associating with television producers and wonders if her long-standing insistence on exposing injustice is wearing thin. She's getting older and, she feels, she has nothing to show for it but financial strain and loneliness.
However, her sense of exposing wrongdoing still rises to the occasion when she nearly runs over a nearly dead escaped convict Nicola Aguinaldo. Despite her quick actions, Nicola dies in hospital and a nasty police detective, Lemour, seems bent on framing VI for murder. The case soon dissolves through lack of evidence, including Nicola's body, which mysteriously disappears from the morgue. VI's interest is piqued and she starts her own investigation into Nicola's life, resulting in continued harassment by Lemour and a sudden, unanticipated interest into her work by corporate security rival, Baladine. However, the pressure put on her is unlike anything she has dealt with before. Unable to turn to the police for help (who would want to believe one of their own is bent?) she realises she must solve the case on her own to protect her reputation and, even more worrying, her life.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
I could not improve on Samantha Pope's review, but want to add that the maturing V.I. is evenmore intersting than she was in the earlier novels and the plot, characters and action are first rate. I was breathless with suspense at the denouement in the the church. A delight for those of us who love smart, sassy women detectives.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A welcome return 28 Jan 2000
By A Customer
The writing in this book was a huge improvement over Tunnel Vision, with the dropping of all that relentlessly tiresome simile, which wasn't a feature of previous titles, and the use of plainer language was also a benefit: sometimes her use of more elaborate vocabulary wasn't even correct for the context (Myrmidons? - I forget the title: the one in which V.I and Mr Contrerras burgle an insurance company office.). As for the story, well, there was the somewhat hyperbolic plot with some interesting social issues mixed in. Hard Time is probably the best so far, in that there is a more balanced style to the prose, but I would like to see some credible plots like she had in her short story collection, as these don't jar with V.I's financial status: V.I. Always being strapped for cash, yet solving huge corruption cases has a degree of implausibility I find hard to reconcile, as I do the fact, that on occasion, Ms Paretsky can do some really great writing, like in small sections of Dead Lock (waiting at Boom Boom's funeral) and Killing Orders (the end scene with Lotty Herschel in which we learn what I. stands for). I would like to see a lot more of this, it would elevate these books beyond Michael Connolly ( The Poet is the nearest to Hard Time) and put her level with Peter Hoeg ( Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow) and Raymond Chandler, to whom she is so often compared (those plots again).
Anyway, I enjoyed reading this book, and look forward to the next one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Taut Suspense Throughout 28 May 2004
V.I. is not a detective out of the English drawing room style. She is an original, and as such will be appreciated or rejected by the degree that you look for originality in your mysteries.
The plot is deliciously complicated, hard to anticipate, and moves along nicely. Although some will quibble that the whole thing is improbable, it could be made very probable with one small change in the motives of the killers.
As such, I'd have to say this is by far the most sophisticated and exciting of the books in the series. V.I. is a lot like Robert Parker's Spenser: Principle is the thing. In an age when many unthinkingly take the easy way out, it is valuable to explore what a modern Dona Quixote would do. V.I. fills the bill perfectly in this fine novel which rises above the detective genre into regular fiction.
Keep up the good work!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great reading 4 Dec 2000
By A Customer
Having read and enjoyed Sara Paretsky's books many years ago, I approached Hard Time with some trepidation. I needn't have worried. Warshawski is still the same fresh character who you can sympathise with and relate to, and Paretsky's writing style is as easy and as fun to read as ever.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Graphic insights
One of the most hard-hitting VI Warshawski novels. A random event leads VI to the interlinked world of politics and big business, with graphic insights into Chicago's prison... Read more
Published on 10 Dec 2011 by JoTownhead
3.0 out of 5 stars Paranoia
I did finish the novel as it moves along at a good pace. What bothers me is that V.I. seems to be at the centre of the universe (even though this may not much spread beyond... Read more
Published on 18 Sep 2007 by Cora
3.0 out of 5 stars Rattling good yarn
Sarah Paretsky pulls out all the stops in this quick paced crime novel. While it's an effective indictment of the worst aspects of the US criminal justice system, and of the... Read more
Published on 31 Mar 2005 by "al130"
2.0 out of 5 stars How many unbelievable lives can one person have?
I've read a number of her books, but this one goes way over the top. Warshawski is becoming more and more caricatured, getting sillier by the page; but of course, no matter how... Read more
Published on 14 Jun 2001
5.0 out of 5 stars PLAIN GREAT!
When you start reading it's impossible to stop. Great crime story, wonderful narrative, just good literature.
Published on 6 April 2001
3.0 out of 5 stars Is it just me or is V.I. a little dated
Maybe the formula of the books worked in the 80s - when I first read Sara Paretsky - but the genre has moved on. Just try going back and rereading the early books. Read more
Published on 24 Sep 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Great pacy read, highly reccomended
I enjoy all of Sara Paretsky's books, this is the best by far, tense, can't put it down, with a really intelligent human heroine who occasionally get's things wrong. Read more
Published on 16 Sep 2000 by Mrs. V. R. C. Corby
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