A World of Thieves: A Novel

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9780060512477: A World of Thieves: A Novel

In 1928 New Orleans, eighteen-year-old Sonny LaSalle is a top prep student and champion amateur boxer -- and he venerates his fraternal twin uncles, Buck and Russell, armed robbers who love their profession. Sonny secretly believes that he, too, is a natural outlaw and persuades his uncles to take him on as a partner. But when a bank job goes bad, Sonny is sent to jail, where he unintentionally kills a policeman who is the son of the most feared lawman in Louisiana, widely known as "John Bones."

After nine months in the infamous Angola penitentiary, Sonny makes a harrowing escape and manages to reunite with Buck and Russell. The carefree trio head out for the boomtowns of west Texas, where the money flows as freely as the oil, unaware that vengeance follows close behind, as the cool, calculating John Bones begins a relentless campaign to hunt down Sonny ... no matter what.

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Review:

Penzler Pick, December 2001: James Carlos Blake has written several novels, but this is the first that can be categorized wholeheartedly as a mystery. Set in the Southwest of 1928, it tells the story of three men who go on a journey of robbery and unintentional murder throughout Louisiana and Texas.

Sonny LaSalle is only a few years younger than his twin uncles, Russell and Buck, and he adores them and their way of life, which involves mostly robbing banks and rigging gambling scams. When he suggests that they take him on as a third partner, they indulge him and let him drive the getaway car on a bank robbery. Sonny is immediately caught and put in a holding cell where a fight breaks out. When Sonny hits a rookie cop who is trying to break up the fight, he inadvertently kills him and is sent to the infamous Angola prison in Louisiana for the long haul. But it's not in Sonny's nature to stay cooped up for long, and he soon escapes, doing what only a few have done before him: running along the levee to freedom and back to his uncles.

From then on, these charming felons career across the landscape stealing just enough money to keep them comfortable, meeting women, and helping damsels in distress. What these carefree villains do not know, but the reader does, is that the rookie cop's father, John Isley Bonham, is not going to simply let Sonny go free. Bonham is a longtime deputy sheriff near retirement. His life has been tragic, and the only joy he ever had was through his son. Bonham is said to have killed more men than any cop in the state. Although he's always claimed self- defense, rumor has it that some of the killings were, in fact, executions. Now he starts his slow, relentless campaign to hunt Sonny down and kill him. Russell, Buck, and Sonny do kill some innocent people, it's true, but compared to Bonham they are amateurs--and Bonham is closing in on them.

For fans of Daniel Woodrell, James Lee Burke, and Robbers, last year's exceptional first novel by Christopher Cook, this book is a must. --Otto Penzler

About the Author:

James Carlos Blake is the author of nine novels. Among his literary honors are the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Southwest Book Award, Quarterly West Novella Prize, and Chautauqua South Book Award. He lives in Arizona.

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Book Description William Morrow Company, United States, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1928 New Orleans, eighteen-year-old Sonny LaSalle is a top prep student and champion amateur boxer -- and he venerates his fraternal twin uncles, Buck and Russell, armed robbers who love their profession. Sonny secretly believes that he, too, is a natural outlaw and persuades his uncles to take him on as a partner. But when a bank job goes bad, Sonny is sent to jail, where he unintentionally kills a policeman who is the son of the most feared lawman in Louisiana, widely known as John Bones. After nine months in the infamous Angola penitentiary, Sonny makes a harrowing escape and manages to reunite with Buck and Russell. The carefree trio head out for the boomtowns of west Texas, where the money flows as freely as the oil, unaware that vengeance follows close behind, as the cool, calculating John Bones begins a relentless campaign to hunt down Sonny . no matter what. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780060512477

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Book Description William Morrow Company, United States, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1928 New Orleans, eighteen-year-old Sonny LaSalle is a top prep student and champion amateur boxer -- and he venerates his fraternal twin uncles, Buck and Russell, armed robbers who love their profession. Sonny secretly believes that he, too, is a natural outlaw and persuades his uncles to take him on as a partner. But when a bank job goes bad, Sonny is sent to jail, where he unintentionally kills a policeman who is the son of the most feared lawman in Louisiana, widely known as John Bones. After nine months in the infamous Angola penitentiary, Sonny makes a harrowing escape and manages to reunite with Buck and Russell. The carefree trio head out for the boomtowns of west Texas, where the money flows as freely as the oil, unaware that vengeance follows close behind, as the cool, calculating John Bones begins a relentless campaign to hunt down Sonny . no matter what. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780060512477

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