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Burglars Can't Be Choosers    by Lawrence Block order for
Burglars Can't Be Choosers
by Lawrence Block
Order:  USA  Can
HarperTorch, 2004 (1977)
Paperback, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

I don't recall when I discovered Lawrence Block's writing. Seems like a long time ago. I learned that whenever I picked up one of his books, I was in for a good read. So with Burglars Can't Be Choosers in my hands, I knew I'd spend a few good hours.

It's the first book in the Bernie Rhodenbarr series. You know the guy. The nice, respectable man who's personable, likes to play poker, presents a tidy if not dapper appearance, is kind to animals, and is a very successful burglar. Unfortunately, when he is commissioned to rob an apartment in Manhattan of one particular item, he's caught red-handed by the police. The really unmitigating circumstance is the body in the bedroom with its head bashed in. Small detail, but one which could prove damaging to Bernie. He takes off at a dead run and goes into hiding.

The resulting story is entertaining, intricate, and full of Block's trademark humor. The action moves swiftly and smoothly. The characters are as much fun as the plot. What more can one ask of a book?

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