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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Price
This book is a genuine page-turner, but not for the more common reasons of thrilling plot twists or raw excitement. Instead it draws you in inexorably by way of the finely-drawn characters, the arcs of their development and the realism of their dialogue.
Ostensibly a quite straight forward police procedural, the joy of this book is learning more about the people,...
Published on 24 Jun 2003 by Vip

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost, but not quite
Richard Price was sat in a Mcdonalds in Manhattan when he spotted a drug dealer on duty in the street. With a question on his mind he set out to research a potential story. Two novels later he brings us Samaritan, this third installment set in the fictional city of Dempsey, New Jersey (located somewhere between factual Hoboken and Jersey City) is an answers first gig with...
Published on 7 July 2003 by Joe Cutts


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Almost, but not quite, 7 July 2003
By 
Joe Cutts (Sheffield, south yorkshire United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Samaritan (Hardcover)
Richard Price was sat in a Mcdonalds in Manhattan when he spotted a drug dealer on duty in the street. With a question on his mind he set out to research a potential story. Two novels later he brings us Samaritan, this third installment set in the fictional city of Dempsey, New Jersey (located somewhere between factual Hoboken and Jersey City) is an answers first gig with a plotline concerning the assault of wealthy jewish samaritan, Ray Mitchel, and his reticence to name the perp. As with the previous two novels in this vain (Mr. Price has written seven novels to date, but has classified himself as a crime ghetto novelist based on his last three works) there's a wealth of twists and intrigue woven around finely drawn characters with some brilliant analysis of the human heart, fast paced dialogue and excellent narrative. However with this, the third of it's type, Richard Price is really flogging a dead horse. His portrayal of human tragedy set against the back drop of mid-size American city travesty was so brilliantly done (to death) in Clockers and Freedomland that to paint a third picture on the same scenery is tantamount to turning the subject of ebonics versus white reality into a soap opera. The author's voice has changed so much from his early days (the fantastic and wickedly funny Ladies' Man for example) that it seems strange he would become obsessed with the urban jungle, ghetto and dope spot, without moving on. Following the brilliant social commentary of it's two predecessors, this work seems strangely lacking and reads more like junk food for the brain as oppose to a lesson into the darkness of modern urbania.
That said, this is still a strong if slightly pointless novel. Price doesn't complictate, and wisely avoids the use of "Blackspeak" or ebonics. Neither does he delve too deeply into the workings of a societal system the majority of this book's readership will know little about without explaining in full. The characters are highly detailed, if a little too clever for their own good, and, thankfully, aren't handsome, young, beautiful, muscular, slim, potential movie stars - these are real people and their descriptions makes them believable.
On the whole, if you're a fan you'll get a kick, if you want a bare bones crime story and you've never read Richard Price before, read his others first.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Price, 24 Jun 2003
This review is from: Samaritan (Hardcover)
This book is a genuine page-turner, but not for the more common reasons of thrilling plot twists or raw excitement. Instead it draws you in inexorably by way of the finely-drawn characters, the arcs of their development and the realism of their dialogue.
Ostensibly a quite straight forward police procedural, the joy of this book is learning more about the people, places and local history that defines them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars and........., 23 Nov 2004
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P. Gill "paulgill" (Pontyclun, South Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Samaritan (Paperback)
I bought this book on recommendation but was very disappointed. The book is well written and the characters well developed but it is a real slow burner. I stuck with it, though, expecting a killer ending, which just doesn't come. When I got to the end of the book and found out who did it I just thought oh. and that pretty much is it. Just another reminder never to believe the hype written on book covers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Richard Price is always worth reading, 27 Dec 2009
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This review is from: Samaritan (Paperback)
Richard Price is, without doubt, one of the best writers writing in English today. He's a wonderful novelist. That said, this is not his best book. That, I'm pretty sure, would be Clockers; Freedomland is a tour de force; Lush Life is well worth reading.
Somehow, The Samaritan doesn't quite live like the others. The main character is vivid, a bit raw, perhaps autobiographical. The other characters don't breathe the way his characters usually do. Still, a good read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Decent novel, 28 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Samaritan (Paperback)
This in an enjoyable novel with an interesting set of stories around the rather empty main narrative. The characters are interesting and the novel is worth reading, but not if you're a fan of a plot because there isn't really too much here. If you like Richard Price then you'll like this, it's similar to Clockers, but better written.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Addressing an essential, 26 Feb 2012
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This review is from: Samaritan (Paperback)
How do you give and how do you receive? This book is about the nature of grace. It demonstrates the inevitably flawed and compromised nature of philanthropy, the many different ways of giving, and the pain, often the agony, endured by those who spend all their lives receiving.

The Samaritan in question not only does not pass by on the other side, nor leave money for the care of those he finds by the wayside. He returns to his beneficiaries and tries to help again. He also asks himself what he thinks he is doing, and why, and when other people point out to him that he has made serious errors of judgement, he reflects and acts on their counsel too.

In a world where no matter how much certain billionaires give, they will never approach or know need, and where, no matter how hard they work or what ability they possess, or how long they live, tens of millions of people will never rise beyond subsistence-level living, or climb out of their urban hells, these issues are central.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very good book, 18 Oct 2004
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MrShev "mrshev" (Gloucestershire, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Samaritan (Paperback)
I really, really enjoyed this book. The overriding feeling I have after finishing it is that every character is so finely drawn. Each one has their own voice to a point that you don't need "..he said", "...she said", you can identify them by their vocal tics.
This book is about people more than anything else and apart from Nerese, none of them are particularily likable, but that makes little difference to feeling a form of voyeuristic satisfaction at seeing them interact. Highly recommended.
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Samaritan
Samaritan by Richard Price (Paperback - 5 April 2004)
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