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The Cut

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The first in a stunning action-packed series from the writer of THE WIRE.

About the Author

George Pelecanos was born in Washington, D.C. in 1957. He worked as a line cook, dishwasher, bartender, and woman's shoe salesman before publishing his first novel in 1992. Pelecanos is the author of twenty books set in and around Washington, D.C.: A Firing Offense, Nick's Trip, Shoedog, Down By the River Where the Dead Men Go, The Big Blowdown, King Suckerman, The Sweet Forever, Shame the Devil, Right as Rain, Hell to Pay, Soul Circus, Hard Revolution, Drama City, The Night Gardener, The Turnaround, The Way Home, The Cut, What It Was, The Double, and The Martini Shot. He has been the recipient of the Raymond Chandler award in Italy, the Falcon award in Japan, and the Grand Prix Du Roman Noir in France. Hell to Pay and Soul Circus were awarded the 2003 and 2004 Los Angeles Times Book Prizes. The Turnaround won the Hammett Prize for literary excellence in the field of crime writing. His fiction has appeared in Playboy, Esquire, and the collections Unusual Suspects, Best American Mystery Stories of 1997, Measures of Poison, Best American Mystery Stories of 2002, Men From Boys, and Murder at the Foul Line. He served as editor on the collections D.C. Noir and D.C. Noir 2: The Classics, as well as The Best Mystery Stories of 2008. He is an award-winning essayist who has written for The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, GQ, Sight and Sound, Uncut, Mojo, and numerous other publications. Esquire magazine called him "the poet laureate of the D.C. crime world." In Entertainment Weekly, Stephen King wrote that Pelecanos is "perhaps the greatest living American crime writer." Pelecanos would like to point out that Mr. King used the word "perhaps." Pelecanos was a producer, writer, and story editor for the acclaimed HBO dramatic series, The Wire, winner of the Peabody Award, the AFI Award, and the Edgar. He was nominated for an Emmy for his writing on that show. He was a writer and co-producer on the World War II miniseries The Pacific, produced by Steven Spielberg, and most recently worked as a writer and Executive Producer on the HBO series Treme. Pelecanos lives in Silver Spring, Maryland. He is at work on his next novel.


He's best known for writing acclaimed US TV show The Wire. But George Pelecanos has spent many years penning brilliant but under-appreciated crime novels set in Washington DC ... the dialogue, characters and sense of location are superb. Pelecanos is a Cut above the rest. -- Natasha Harding * THE SUN * George Pelecanos writes hard-boiled fiction with heart * SUNDAY TELEGRAPH * Pelecanos, heir to Elmore Leonard's throne, has landed another short, sparkling masterpiece. What's more, The Cut is just the beginning of a planned series for tough, streetwise, mother's boy Spero Lucas. * THE MIRROR * The language, like the action, is brutal, fast and hard ... Stephen King describes Pelecanos as 'perhaps the greatest living crime writer' and The Cut certainly marks him out as a name to watch. In fact, he may just come to give Ellroy and Leonard a run for their money in the hard-boiled stakes. * DAILY MAIL * Pelecanos keeps readers on their toes with with a series of twists that confound stereotypes, drilling the plot along with breakneck prose, sassy dialogue and even shifting into a serious analysis at modern society in all its flawed glory. Exceptional. * THE BIG ISSUE * This is gold-standard character-driven crime writing that few will ever match. I can't wait for the sequel. -- Christopher Fowler * FINANCIAL TIMES * expertly crafted writing, pop-culture references ... and a plot that keeps twisting to the dramatic finale. * SHORTLIST * a bloody, brooding thriller of rare authenticity. -- Mark Sanderson * EVENING STANDARD * Pelecanos is incapable of writing a book that isn't gripping, and the dialogue is of a brilliance comparable only with Elmore Leonard and George V Higgins. * THE TIMES * As you'd expect from a writer with credit for both The Wire and Treme, Pelecanos expertly renders the streets of the US capital and succeeds where many have failed of late: creating a fully formed antihero whom readers will want to meet again. * SHORTLIST *

In Pelecanos's latest, ex-Marine Spero Lucas, returned from Iraq, is trying to maintain some semblance of humanity and morality while sleuthing on the mean streets of Washington, D.C. Soon he finds himself accepting a job from a notorious crime boss and descending into a world of violence and intrigue. Narrator Dion Graham lends each character-including Lucas, his no-nonsense mother, his well-educated African-American stepbrother, his sullen convict client, and a couple of naive thieves-a distinctive, appropriate voice. Graham also shines in his rendering of the author's lively, naturalistic dialogue, while his oddly fluctuating, almost singsong narration becomes less and less distracting as the action ramps up, with Lucas searching for a cache of stolen drugs and his place in civilian life. A Little, Brown/Reagan Arthur Books hardcover. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

When valuable things are stolen, investigator Spero Lucas is the one to find them. Tired of his modest job working for a Washington, DC, defense attorney, he accepts a proposal from a drug lord. A 40 percent commission may be profitable, but it moves him into the shady side, where ensuing double-dealing produces violence and a growing body count. Audie Award-winning actor Dion Graham infuses life into a large cast of characters that include Washington professionals, street punks, and Spero's ex-military buddies, but keeping track of everyone in this short novel becomes a challenge. Fast moving and hard edged, this first episode in a new series is not for everyone, but those who appreciate contemporary urban thrillers can expect a fine listen. [The Reagan Arthur hc, published in August, was a New York Times best seller.-Ed.]-Janet Martin, Southern Pines P.L., NC (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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