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Very Bad Men Hardcover – 7 Jul 2011

4.0 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Amy Einhorn Books (7 July 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780399157493
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399157493
  • ASIN: 0399157492
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,428,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

""Very Bad Men" is the mystery of the summer--totally top-shelf...Simply great storytelling."

"The rare crime novel with something for everyone who reads crime fiction."

"Like Dolan's notable debut, "Bad Things Happen", this [is a] cleverly plotted, hard-boiled tale."

"Like Dolan's notable debut, "Bad Things Happen," this [is a] cleverly plotted, hard-boiled tale."

"A twist-filled adventure...The characters in this engaging work are full of surprises."
""Very Bad Men" is the mystery of the summer--totally top-shelf...Simply great storytelling."
"Like Dolan's notable debut, "Bad Things Happen," this [is a] cleverly plotted, hard-boiled tale."
"The rare crime novel with something for everyone who reads crime fiction."

"A twist-filled adventure The characters in this engaging work are full of surprises."
"Very Bad Men" is the mystery of the summer totally top-shelf Simply great storytelling."
Like Dolan s notable debut, "Bad Things Happen," this [is a] cleverly plotted, hard-boiled tale."
The rare crime novel with something for everyone who reads crime fiction. " --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

Raymond Chandler meets the Coen brothers - with a dash of Harlan Coben - in a smart, funny, multi-layered and tightly plotted murder mystery --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another fascinating novel from Harry Dolan which once again is suspenseful and intriguing. He has a way of holding you there whilst weaving the plot around the one question that you can't quite guess, in this case `who was the getaway driver for the bank robbery all those years ago?'
I pride myself on believing I can work these things out - how clever is this author in sending you down all the plot twists and blind alleys?
But most of all I love his writing style I would call `effortlessly descriptive' because he can set a scene, or describe a character in such few words but leave you with the most vivid and colorful of pictures. His style is pure genius.
I look forward to his prequel `The Last Dead Girl', I now have a need to know where David Loogan came from and I'm beginning to wonder who might play him in the film of these books! Pat McDonald
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By Quiverbow TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 2 July 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
David Loogan is the editor of a weekly crime magazine called Gray Streets, which is full of submitted short stories. He picks up a manuscript left at his office, which tells of someone who claims to have murdered a man. The thing is, a man with that same name has just been found strangled in his own house. Fortunately, Loogan's girlfriend happens to be a detective called to the scene. The submitted manuscript also names another dead person and someone else who is currently very much alive, but won't be for long. Both Loogan and detective Elizabeth Waishkey investigate.

Let's get the `score' out of the way first; I thought this was a first class read and well worth a top rating.
I haven't read the other book by Harry Dolan. Actually, I had never heard of him until I got this, his second novel, but if this is anything to go by, his debut outing is certainly on my `to read' list. We know the perpetrator, the next victim on the list and the tangle of suspicious characters that make an appearance. In spite of this, as we don't know the killer's relationship with those involved (if any), we don't know the reason why. That is the nub of this slickly paced mystery/thriller; why it's happening.

For me, books that flit between first and third person perspectives are usually a bit of a mess but here, not only does it work, it adds to the overall feel. Loogan, a man who, whilst penning short stories for his magazine under a pseudonym, really wants to be a detective, which is how he happens to involve himself in most of what occurs, narrates that first person view. At the same time as Loogan is running around, you're wondering which of the characters brought into the story is responsible for what has and is happening.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
David Loogan returns to the page to help solve another murder, or two, or three, or - I began to lose count. At first I could not decide if it was a political thriller, a crime novel, or something else.

The quality of Dolan's writing style carried me along, and some of the characters are well drawn, and the plot has many twists, and, in the best tradition of Detective stories, the clues for the reader to deduce why/whodunnit are there. But I only found the more obscure, and therefore the essential ones, with help of hindsight on my second read through.

I like the way the protagonist Loogan has matured from the first book and established a more normal relationship with Detective Waishkey. However some of the `Bad Men' in the story could have been better developed, and some of the scene setting padding removed. As with the previous book, I feel the author has not been best served by his editor; in places the narrative feels slow, in others it rattles along nicely, sometimes it is disconnected as if something was cut out that should have been left there, and often I had to refrain from skipping bits.

I also liked the different viewpoints on the story as seen by the various characters, alternative perspectives always seem to add more depth and help to round it out. I read this during the evenings on a short holiday, and found I was staying up far too long - always a good sign for a book. So I look forward to the next book in the series (I assume there will be more).
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By Sussman TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 2 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Our main protagonist David Loogan, is an editor of a magazine that publishes crime fiction stories and mysteries, he is often drawn into conflicts and situations by his readers. Loogan receives a manuscript that begins with, "I killed Henry Kormoran. "Well Ok! so begins `Very Bad Men' a thought provoking first line, it is clear that the author knows how to capture readers interest and imagination from the get go, ensuring that our attention stays sufficiently focused to the unfolding plot.

The novel has numerous characters, all of whom are well crafted and judiciously developed by the author. The characters all seem to follow their own narrative weaving into a single thread of the overall plot. However, for me these, almost disparate threads, don't sit well and bond as they should at times in the book. Rather the reader is left to feel as if the narrative is spinning off in random and uncontainable directions.

The main lead character, Loogan, himself is as engaging and interesting, his sleuthing skill set are put to test in this novel. It is nice to see a character that has difficulties because, more often than not, he is wrong in his theories and frequently has to rethink what he knows. This then provides for some interesting twists and turns in the novel. That said there is fine line to be drawn here, as having no idea what is going on becomes very tiring after its run its course. The reader is left with nothing firm to hold onto, and the plot narrative seems to just fall apart. I have not read the author's first book in the series `Bad Things Happen'. So I have no yard stick to give a better critical analysis. Very Bad Men is certainly has a gripping storyline and is very creative, but is let down by the problems outlined above.
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