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Crime Paperback – May 1 2009

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company (May 1 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780393335507
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393335507
  • ASIN: 039333550X
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 13.7 x 2.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 159 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #576,796 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Len TOP 100 REVIEWER on Oct. 31 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Crime is a story about forgiveness and redemption with a plot that reminds me very much of The Kite Runner by Khaled Hossein even though their settings are in no way alike. Both, however are plagued by injustices experienced in childhood that frame the reality for the main characters right into their adult lives. As a detective inspector in Edinburgh, Scotland Ray Lennox of Crime has just finished a case involving the rape of a child kidnapped as she was making the five-minute walk to her school. Unfortunately, her case location remains unknown until after her death. After assaulting the main suspect brought in for questioning, Ray is given leave from his job or a little R and R. His fiancé, Trudi, takes him to Miami where circumstances won't let him forget and he quickly gets embroiled in the life of Tianna, a ten-year victim of sexual abuse. The anger that has monopolized Ray's existence will not be pacified until he can rid himself of the ghosts of past-injustices. Mr. Welsh makes us feel the Ray's frustrations and so the fantastic relief that would come from a possible resolution. I can.t recommend a book more highly.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 19 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
(4.5) "Her childhood glided past her like the Frisbee destined for thee hands of another." Aug. 20 2008
By Luan Gaines - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Wielding language with the same deft authority as in his previous novels, the scathingly articulate Welsh delivers a powerful story of a man haunted by his recent failures, DI Ray Lennox of the Edinburgh PD. Breaking down after the traumatizing case of a murdered little girl, Lennox has succumbed to the sweat-soaked nightmares of his failures on the job, vainly trying to save victims from the monsters who prey on them. Attending NA and gulping down prescribed antidepressants, Lennox and fiancé, Trudi, fly to Miami for a much-needed vacation, he in an effort to clear his mind, she with a "Perfect Bride" magazine and growing guest list in hand. Caught up in wedding plans, Trudi is flummoxed when Ray goes completely off the track; she has failed to notice ominous signs of Ray's further unraveling. He stops taking his medication, his internal demons soon reawakened. It isn't long before the thirst is upon him, Ray seeking oblivion in alcohol, which only exacerbates his life problems and triggers the urge for cocaine.

Quite literally, Welsh's protagonist is a mess, an emotional and mental wreck bedeviled by memories of the little girl he couldn't save, his thoughts filled with the degenerates he interviewed while searching for the missing girl, their twisted world-views eating into his soul until he sees such men everywhere: "Lennox was too sensitive to cope with the savagery that surrounded him in Serious Crimes." A beautifully flawed protagonist, this tough cop is driven to his knees by the evil that assaults helpless children, even Trudi unable to break through the wall of pain that threatens to overwhelm him. As his drinking accelerates, the inevitable happens- a bitter argument. Trudi stalks off to their Miami hotel, leaving Ray at a bar, his rage and thirst for drink and self-punishment sending him into the embrace of the denizens who feed on the innocence of the poor and vulnerable. From tourist-friendly Miami to the darker, meaner streets of abuse, drugs and various forms of depravity, Lennox is in free fall, partying with his new best friends, trapped in yet another nightmare, groggily rescuing ten-year-old Tianna from the circling sharks.

Once again, Welsh is at the top of his game, his extremely sympathetic, tormented hero struggling for clarity far from his native Scotland, on a mad chase with a child across Florida to evade her predators, Trudi flailing at her helplessness and this vacation-run-amok, wondering what she is doing with this man. Ray's torment is a beautiful thing in Welsh's hands, including the flashbacks in Edinburgh that lay the groundwork for the protagonist's mental condition, a cynical, often sardonic cop caught in the vortex of a crime he most detests, looking for redemption with a damaged child at his side. This is a tough story- no punches pulled- the ugly underbelly of this particular form of degeneracy exposed to the light. Physically and mentally battered, Lennox is called upon to exorcise his long-repressed demons in a final effort to save himself from the horrors around him. Miami will never be the same, this wild Scot marking his territory as he races with Tianna one step ahead of the villains: "It really does become... the battle between good and evil." Luan Gaines/ 2008.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Disturbing subject masterfully told Feb. 18 2009
By AZ Mutley - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Mr Welsh at his best. His narrative of Florida and America was very insightful from the Scottish point of view he penned this novel from. I later found out he resides there. No wonder it was so good.

The plot moves back and forth between the past and it's ghosts to the present day and the pressing matter of saving a child from a gang of molesters. The characters were so vivid and the plot was paced such that I found I could not put the book down.

It comes across as a more mature read than the likes of train spotting. One of his best works I feel.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Welsh at his best Nov. 4 2012
By john burt - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read about half of Irvine Welsh's stuff...this one, for me, is his best. It is not only is meaningful and important. Welsh writes with power and conviction, leaving you feeling like all his characters are seated alongside you on the couch. I recommend Crime to all who have been sexually abused, or know someone that has been.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A return to form... Feb. 7 2011
By Andy Szpuk - Published on
Crime shows Welsh really stretching himself in the construction of his narrative - experimenting and playing with tenses and viewpoints, and it has to be noted he does it very well indeed.
He also creates and develops a typically claustrophobic storyline, with a colourful cast of characters. There is much less reliance on the vernacular devices that have been his trademark for so long, and Crime demonstrates a growing maturity. Even so, Welsh still captures the chaotic mindset of the obsessive, of the dark desires of humanity, of the seedy underbelly of life.
The ending peters out a little timidly, compared to say the shock ending of Filth, but there is enough leading up to that to satisfy old fans and gain new ones.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Good. Aug. 6 2009
By Quickshot - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has the normal (for Irvine Welsh) themes of drugs, violence, and sexual wrongness - but in a more accessible and readable form than usual. It's severely Americanized, and not in a bad way.

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