Top Banana (Harpur & Iles Mysteries)

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9780393319699: Top Banana (Harpur & Iles Mysteries)

Top Banana is coffee for the soul. If you like your reading black without sugar, here’s a book with enough kick to keep you awake on a long winter night.” ―Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

When thirteen-year-old drug runner Mandy Walsh is killed in a shootout between rival drug gangs, the police at first think she was accidentally caught in the crossfire. But soon they learn that someone shot her intentionally, and as Detective Chief Superintendent Colin Harpur looks deeper the case only gets more dangerous. For Chief Constable Mark Lane, a man almost paralyzed by the collapse of civilization he sees in the relentless drug wars, the only solution to the evil is for someone to infiltrate the gangs. His sardonic assistant chief, Desmond Iles, has another solution: let the gangland police itself, in return for a few favors. Meanwhile, Mansel Shale, drug kingpin, would-be top banana, is looking for--and may have found--a working arrangement with someone on the police force. A relentless chain of events, starting with Mandy's death, comes to an exciting and unexpected conclusion.

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Review:

"Possibly she even realized, or half-realized, that there was something wrong with her life.... She wondered whether what had happened to the park had happened to her: a dark, rushed change that would never change back."

This is England's mystery treasure Bill James describing a 13-year-old girl known as Noon, soon to be shot dead while working as a drug courier near a rundown park. Her death sets off a series of explosions in James's latest book in his wonderfully dark and exquisitely written Harpur & Iles series.

Detective chief superintendent Colin Harpur (said to resemble a taller English version of the late boxer Rocky Marciano) plays a largely reactive role this time, trying to keep his immediate superior, assistant chief constable Desmond Iles, from doing serious mental damage to chief constable Mark Lane in their unnamed city to the north of London. "Lane's life was mortally chafed by the ACC's brilliant rough mind and unstoppable tongue," James writes. Iles wants the police to make an unholy alliance with top drug dealers, especially Mansel Shale, whose oddly brilliant dialogue suggests a mating of Damon Runyon and Harold Pinter. Lane is strongly opposed, favoring instead a dangerous attempt to infiltrate Shale's operation. "The risks were gross. Normally, the Chief would have been the first to see it, but terrible anxieties and swelling guilt had begun to fracture his judgement, and even his humanity."

Roses, Roses, the previous Harpur & Iles book, covered the murder of Harpur's wife and was on several 1998 Top 10 lists. Other fine examples of James's high art include Club, Gospel, Halo Parade, and The Lolita Man. Plunge in anywhere, and be prepared to become addicted. --Dick Adler

About the Author:

Bill James has been called "the Elmore Leonard of Britain's underworld" (Kirkus Reviews) and has been named a "Master of Crime" in a mystery roundup by the London Sunday Times, which said, "There is nothing else quite like this series of police procedurals. James is concerned with the dilemmas and difficulties of policing Britain's inner cities, and he addresses these in hard-edged narratives that leave readers gasping and flinching, praying the people in these stories never come to live in their streets." In addition to the Harpur and Iles series, James is the author of other mystery series and a book on Anthony Powell. He lives in Wales.

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Book Description WW Norton Co, United States, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. When thirteen-year-old drug runner Mandy Walsh is killed in a shootout between rival drug gangs, the police at first think she was accidentally caught in the crossfire. But soon they learn that someone shot her intentionally, and as Detective Chief Superintendent Colin Harpur looks deeper the case only gets more dangerous. For Chief Constable Mark Lane, a man almost paralyzed by the collapse of civilization he sees in the relentless drug wars, the only solution to the evil is for someone to infiltrate the gangs. His sardonic assistant chief, Desmond Iles, has another solution: let the gangland police itself, in return for a few favors. Meanwhile, Mansel Shale, drug kingpin, would-be top banana, is looking for--and may have found--a working arrangement with someone on the police force. A relentless chain of events, starting with Mandy s death, comes to an exciting and unexpected conclusion. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780393319699

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Book Description WW Norton Co, United States, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.When thirteen-year-old drug runner Mandy Walsh is killed in a shootout between rival drug gangs, the police at first think she was accidentally caught in the crossfire. But soon they learn that someone shot her intentionally, and as Detective Chief Superintendent Colin Harpur looks deeper the case only gets more dangerous. For Chief Constable Mark Lane, a man almost paralyzed by the collapse of civilization he sees in the relentless drug wars, the only solution to the evil is for someone to infiltrate the gangs. His sardonic assistant chief, Desmond Iles, has another solution: let the gangland police itself, in return for a few favors. Meanwhile, Mansel Shale, drug kingpin, would-be top banana, is looking for--and may have found--a working arrangement with someone on the police force. A relentless chain of events, starting with Mandy s death, comes to an exciting and unexpected conclusion. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780393319699

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Book Description W. W. Norton & Company. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 288 pages. Dimensions: 7.2in. x 4.5in. x 0.7in.Top Banana is coffee for the soul. If you like your reading black without sugar, heres a book with enough kick to keep you awake on a long winter night. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette When thirteen-year-old drug runner Mandy Walsh is killed in a shootout between rival drug gangs, the police at first think she was accidentally caught in the crossfire. But soon they learn that someone shot her intentionally, and as Detective Chief Superintendent Colin Harpur looks deeper the case only gets more dangerous. For Chief Constable Mark Lane, a man almost paralyzed by the collapse of civilization he sees in the relentless drug wars, the only solution to the evil is for someone to infiltrate the gangs. His sardonic assistant chief, Desmond Iles, has another solution: let the gangland police itself, in return for a few favors. Meanwhile, Mansel Shale, drug kingpin, would-be top banana, is looking for--and may have found--a working arrangement with someone on the police force. A relentless chain of events, starting with Mandys death, comes to an exciting and unexpected conclusion. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780393319699

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