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At Their Own Game by [Zafiro, Frank]
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At Their Own Game Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 246 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product description

About the Author

Frank became a police officer in 1993 and retired in 2013 as a captain. He has written and taught courses at the Basic Law Enforcement Academy, written several college courses in police subject matter and co-authored A Street Officer’s Guide to Report Writing. Many of his stories and novels take place in the fictional River City, a mid-sized city in Eastern Washington, with recurring characters. The River City series of crime novels begins with Under a Raging Moon. Frank has authored numerous books, including crime novels with Jim Wilsky (Blood on Blood, Queen of Diamonds) and Colin Conway (Some Degree of Murder). Over fifty of his short stories have been published in more than a dozen different anthologies, as well as print and online magazines. His story “Good Shepherd” was a finalist for the 2006 Derringer Award. In 2007, his story “The Worst Door” was a finalist for this same award. His story “Dead Even” was a finalist for the 2009 Derringer Award. These and other short stories are gathered together in three River City collections: Dead Even, No Good Deed and The Cleaner. In addition to writing, Frank is an avid hockey fan and a tortured guitarist. His wife, Kristi, supports both. You can keep up with him at http://frankzafiro.com where he maintains his blog or the blog he shares with Jim Wilsky at http://hardboiledpartners.blogspot.com. He also writes under his given name and you can check that out at http://frankscalise.com.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1788 KB
  • Print Length: 246 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Frank Scalise (31 Jan. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00I6I7ALU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,171,788 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
Originally a cop, Jake Stankovic now earns a living dealing in stolen property with his two sidekicks, Matt and Brent, while managing to keep out of the clutches of the law. With money tight, Jake decides to break into drug dealing, something which he has avoided up to now because there is obviously more risk involved, but just this once he takes the risk - a big mistake - he soon finds out, as he gets involved with Ozzy the local drug dealer.

At the same time, Helen, with whom he had an affair whilst in the police force, and who is the ex-wife of detective Falkner, returns and wants to renew their relationship. This re-ignites Falkner’s hatred of Jake and he begins to harass him in every way possible. Jake now seems threatened on all sides. He wants to trust Helen, but something niggles away at him. Ozzy is after his blood. He even suspects one of his sidekicks of being a traitor. Poor Jake, we all get dragged into the sorry state of affairs and whilst wanting to be on Jake’s side, a ruthless streak within his character makes us step back and look at him in a different way. What lengths will a person go to when the chips are down?

It is a compelling story, with great twists and turns, but one that makes us question our own morals. Would we resort to the way Jake deals with his friends and enemies alike?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars 89 reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Settle in for a great read 3 April 2014
By Beverly Clark - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Jake used to be a stand up kind of guy- he was even a cop at one time.

Somewhere along the way Jake went down the wrong path and turned into a hustler- dealing with “hot” merchandise. That was bad enough but then he decides to get in even deeper and gets involved in a drug deal.

Things take a nosedive and when you think they can’t get any worse for Jake- toss in a detective from his past and make it double bad- a woman from his past to0.

When you read this fast paced crime thriller, you think this author has definitely done his research. Then you realize this is a bit more than research. If you are like me, you check his bio and see his police career background- perfect fit for crafting this story.

This story absolutely sizzles with intrigue, crime and maybe even a little of Jake’s own regret for taking the low road that he now has to somehow get off of to save himself. Can he outsmart the detective or is he kidding himself? The woman from his past- what is her connection and is she legit or is this a ruse?

There are many layers in this story and as you slowly peel the onion (known as Jake) you see things that were, at first, well hidden.

Excellent read.
4.0 out of 5 stars "It was either I retire from the business, or I retire him." 10 May 2015
By Don Kidwell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
' "I don't want to shoot you, I said. "And I don't want you to beg. I'm not that kind of guy." ' Nobody is whom they seem in this hard-boiled thrill ride that I finished in less than 24 hours. Plenty of twists and turns kept me engaged throughout, tho at the end of the book nobody was exactly wearing the 'white hat.' For an author noted for writing police procedurals this was like looking at an entirely new set of characters whom embraced the dark side and made for an entertaining change of pace. Very good book that I did like and will be looking forward to reading more from Zafiro as a result!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moves at the relentless pace of a silver bullet 1 April 2014
By A. Venutolo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'll just say it: I love books written by cops. They usually bring a level of authenticity rarely executed by conventional scribes and Frank Scalise - writing under the prolific pen name of Frank Zafiro – is, quite frankly, no different.

In "At Their Own Game," Zafiro flips the script and chucks the inner-city locale found in scores of books and plants his very hard-boiled yarn in northwestern Spokane, Washington.

His antihero is Jake Stankovic, a cop cum cat burglar, who, up until now has been treading safe waters with lackeys Brent and Matt. When even Jake feels the financial pinch that's been plaguing the rest of the waking world, he decides to enter the unchartered territory of drug dealing. Wrong move -- especially when they land on the radar of a local dick. Throw in the proverbial 'woman from the past' (with a sweet twist), a crazy drug dealer named Ozzy and it's no shock to see that the former flatfoot's world comes crumbling.

This taut tale, which moves at the relentless pace of a silver bullet, will keep fans of the genre quite happy and will undoubtedly keep Kindles on overtime for years to come. In short, if you dug crime novels like "A Simple Plan," you'll indeed love "At Their Own Game."
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Done! 4 May 2015
By mott137 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, so much to the point that I read the whole thing over a day and a half. Good plot with several interesting “left turns” that were both unexpected and added to the plot development. I will be reading more from this author. And the icing on the cake, to be trite, was a complete absence of technical and procedural errors. There’s nothing like a character “cocking his Glock” or “taking the safety off a Glock” to complete derail a train of thought. Mr. Zafiro knows his stuff, and there is nothing to distract from the story. Well Done!
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Your Standard Police Procedural 5 May 2015
By Martin Evans - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Many books written by former police officers have the "facts" but not the story-telling form that makes an exciting and interesting book. At Their Own Game has both. The dialogue is rapid fire and realistic, the personalities of the characters are well developed, and the twists and turns are both unexpected and suspenseful.

As to the few reviews that mention the story not featuring "good guys," that's true. It's definitely hero-less. Everybody's just a little or a lot evil. But as the narrator (the main character Jake) says, "Sure we're criminals, but we're not bad guys."

It's a great read for those who like slightly dark mysteries. Fast moving and exciting and a definite page turner. (For the sensitive, it should be noted that four letter words are sprinkled liberally throughout. There's some romance too - essential to the story - but no explicit sex.) Grammar, spelling, and punctuation are close to perfect.
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