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Customer Review

VINE VOICEon 8 April 2011
Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Among Thieves tells the story of a major art robbery in Boston in 1990, carried out by local criminals working with the IRA. The robbery itself is somewhat based on fact and the rest is Hosp's imagining of who was behind the theft and why.

In the present day, an IRA fanatic wants the paintings in a desperate bid to sell them. Hosp's main protagonist, lawyer Scott Finn, becomes involved as he ends up defending one of the men originally involved in the heist.

The book is reasonably well told, but I had a hard time believing in a terrorist group, barely still functioning, honestly thinking they could get hold of the stolen art and sell it to fund their barely ongoing war. The story starts fairly promisingly, but doesn't really develop enough over its 360-odd pages. For example, two police officers are introduced and given a fair amount of backstory, but then disappear for a massive chunk of the book only to reappear briefly again at the end.

At the other end, the IRA soldier in Boston to secure the paintings, Liam Killbranish, is under-developed. He's a cold blooded killer for reasons that are covered a little, but it would have been good to have a bit more to him than that.

Scott Finn is a lawyer, but doesn't have much to do when it comes to practicing law. He behaves more as a private detective, along with his investigator, than a defence attorney much of the time. He is from the bad streets of Boston (we know this as we are frequently reminded of it) and you expect something of a maverick attitude and a few shady brushes with the law, but it just doesn't happen. Instead Finn seems a bit bland and wet. I didn't find myself particularly warming to him.

The city of Boston is a character in the book and it pays if you know a bit about it. There is some assumed knowledge of Boston on Hosp's part. Referring to an area as "Southie" means nothing to me and a bit more description would be welcome, although you do get the message by the end of the novel.

All of these issues would perhaps be helped if I had read previous novels featuring Finn, and to be fair the book is an OK read. But it could have been more, and it hasn't left me wanting to particularly sample any of David Hosp's other work.
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Product Details

4.1 out of 5 stars