Shame the Devil: A Novel

Pelecanos, George P.

Published by Little, Brown and Company, 2000
ISBN 10: 0316695238 / ISBN 13: 9780316695237
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Synopsis: A restaurant robbery goes badly wrong in Washington, D.C., leaving a number of employees dead, the gunman's brother killed by police, and a young boy run over by the getaway car, a situation that rapidly worsens as the gunman vows to avenge his brother by killing every person involved in his death. 20,000 first printing.

Review: Penzler Pick, February 2000: Just as Robert B. Parker and Dennis Lehane have made Boston their own and Los Angeles has been the distinct province of a lineage leading from Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald to Michael Connelly and Robert Crais, so is George Pelecanos the storyteller who's put Washington, D.C., on the noir map. Once considered "the best-kept secret in crime fiction" by his peers, he is now fast leaving behind those days of strictly word-of-mouth fame and cult status.

Telling it like he sees it, and looking fearlessly into those dark, forgotten alleyways that lay too far beyond the corridors of power to make it into any guidebooks, Pelecanos conjures up a gritty, ghostly Washington of working-class neighborhoods and aging suburbs and shoots it through with chillingly unpredictable menace. Most Washington natives probably wouldn't recognize the place--but they couldn't stop trying either, knowing that they've at least glimpsed (out of the corners of their eyes) those environs where a Pelecanos character is most at home.

In Shame the Devil, we find a society of grieving men and women connected by loss, betrayal, the need for revenge, and the shadowy presence of evil. As in other Pelecanos tales, the heroes are not easily identified, love is a coming together of wounded souls, and answers are found where least expected. In the aftermath of a botched armed robbery, a fair number of lives have been thrown into a downward spiral. The problems, however, come on faster and with more fury once the status quo sustaining the survivors has been breached by an ill-wishing and unwanted addition to their little group.

Here are two favorite moments. In one, protagonist Dimitri Karras asks the name of a fellow bar patron. Hearing that he's called Happy, Karras comments that he doesn't look too happy. The answer: "He's pacing himself." The other: we hear the thoughts of the sociopathic villain: "Some believed that incarceration was a mark of failure, but Frank disagreed. Prison was an essential element of any career criminal's education."

With Shame the Devil, Pelecanos solidifies his position among the elite of the brilliant coterie of young noir writers who are creating the emerging classics of the genre. --Otto Penzler

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Shame the Devil: A Novel
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Fine
Edition: First Edition

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Pelecanos, George P.
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Book Description Little Brown & Company. Hardcover. Condition: As New. An apparently unread copy in perfect condition. Dust cover is intact; pages are clean and are not marred by notes or folds of any kind. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0316695238I2N00

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Book Description Little Brown & Company. Hardcover. Condition: Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. The spine may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can include previous owner inscriptions. An ex-library book and may have standard library stamps and/or stickers. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0316695238I3N10

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Book Description Little, Brown and Company, 2000. Condition: Good. 1st. Ships from the UK. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Seller Inventory # GRP102231747

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