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Burglar Who Studied Spinoza Mass Market Paperback – Nov 23 1998


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Signet (MM); Reprint edition (Nov. 23 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451194888
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451194886
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.6 x 2.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 159 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,848,347 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Library Journal

In this classic Bernie Rhodenbarr mystery, long out of print, sneaky thief Bernie turns up a 1913 V-nickel that gets his Spinoza-reading fence, Abel, murdered.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Lawrence Block is one of the most widely recognized names in the mystery genre. He has been named a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America and is a four-time winner of the prestigious Edgar and Shamus Awards, as well as a recipient of prizes in France, Germany, and Japan. He received the Diamond Dagger from the British Crime Writers' Association—only the third American to be given this award. He is a prolific author, having written more than fifty books and numerous short stories, and is a devoted New Yorker and an enthusiastic global traveler.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Around five-thirty I put down the book I'd been reading and started shooing customers out of the store. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 8 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Lawrence Block is one of our most talented mystery authors. In the Bernie Rhodenbarr series he explores how an ordinary, but intelligent, "honest" person might go about pursuing a life of crime as a fastidious and talented burglar who isn't proud of what he does, doesn't like to hang out with criminals, and really gets a big thrill out of breaking and entering . . . and removing valuables. As you can see, there's a sitcom set-up to provide lots of humor. But the humor works well in part because Mr. Block is able to put the reader in the Bernie's shoes while he breaks, enters and steals . . . and evades the long arm of the law. To balance the "honest" burglar is an array of "dishonest" and equally easy-money loving cops. As a result, you're in a funny moral never-never land while your stomach tightens and your arm muscles twitch as tension builds. To make matters even more topsy-turvy, Bernie at some point in every story turns into an investigator who must figure out "who-dun-it" for some crime that he personally didn't do. It's almost like one of those "mystery at home" games where the victim comes back as the police investigator, playing two roles. Very nice!
So much for explaining the concept of the series. The Burglar Who Studied Spinoza is the fourth book in the series. I strongly suggest that you begin the series by reading Burglars Can't Be Choosers and follow it up with The Burglar in the Closet and The Burglar Who Liked to Quote Kipling. Each story in the series adds information and characters in a way that will reduce your pleasure of the others if read out of order. Although, I originally read them out of order and liked them well enough. I'm rereading them now in order, and like it much better this way. The Burglar Who Painted Like Mondrian comes next in the series.
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By A Customer on Feb. 16 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I read this book because I adore Spinoza, and figured any crook who has studied Spinoza can't be all bad, as of course Bernie is not. And Abel, his fence, is not. Abel is simply given to excess. His lifestyle, including his eating habits, he supports through non-legal efforts. Bernie, the narrator, one of Abel's partners in crime, has "pretty much" gone straight, probably because he knows--sooner or later-- crime really doesn't pay. But when you have a hobby...well, you've got to apply yourself to it, at least occasionally. The love interest is early on fairly predictable, but you don't want to bet the farm until the last few pages. The 3 main characters are fully formed. Their needs and fears, their hopes and dreams--everything that makes us human--are explored, Spinoza fashion, through relationships, deeds, and the solving of a murder. Sometimes the "bad" guy gets away, sometimes not. Sometimes the "good" guy gets a raw deal, sometimes not. There is a little bit of everything in this book...men, women, children, animals, relationships, theft, big money, murder, philosophy, psychology... all overlapping in a complex but not complicated fashion. It's the way life does us.
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Format: Hardcover
If you read the publication materials carefully you will notice that the book was copywritten in 1980, but not published till 1997. There are anachronisms in the text that make this clear. Though it reads as if the author and the reader share the same time zone (eastern, very eastern) silver is $20 an ounce, telephone calls cost a dime, and jogging is still a new fad. The plot could also use some revision, because the denoument, which I won't spoil more than it already is, doesn't really convince this reader, who is a very big Lawrence Block fan. What continues to please are the voice, the characters, the relationship between Bernie and his buddy, and the general sense of decency and good humor, so refreshing in a professional criminal. Block's last Matthew Scudder felt a little recycled , too. And his latest is a revival of a character he hasn't written about in almost twenty years. Why all this rehashing? Is he tired? Did he fall off the wagon? Does he have a new and more interesting hobby?
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Format: Audio Cassette
Bernie Rhodenbarr is at it again in Lawrence Block's fourth "The Burglar Who..." series. In this fast paced novel "The Burglar who Studied Spinoza," Bernie has to turn sleuth once again to prove he is not guilty of anything worse than entering someone else's apartment with his trusty burglar tools and taking valuables easy to carry away and fence them for a quick turn over. This story involves a very rare coin, a 1913 Liberty V nickel. Our favorite reoccurring characters, Carolyn Kaiser who runs a dog grooming parlor, and Ray Kirschmann the best cop money can buy also make play their roles as they have in previous "Burglar Who book..." Lawrence Block does an excellent job telling of burglaries, murder and mayhem. As with other books in this series he does it with a great sense of humor. That's what makes these stories of a burglar who also owns an antiquarian bookshop in New York Greenwich Village fun to read. They are light reading, just right for a cold winter's night in front of a fireplace or a bright summer afternoon at poolside. I'm a true Bernie Rhodenbarr fan and look forward to reading the next on my to read list, "The Burglar who Pained Like Mondrian." When I do a review will surly be posted here.
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