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Record of Wrongs [Hardcover]

Andy Straka

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Book Description

February 2008 Five Star First Edition Mystery
Something extraordinary is about happen to Quentin Price. A former college security guard, he is being released after serving nine years in prison because a new round of DNA testing has cast doubt on his guilt. But that's not all. He is about to confront a figure from his past who will make him an offer difficult to refuse: the chance to help solve the crime that put him behind bars. There is only one problem. What if Quentin is guilty? And what if the person he is about to meet appears the unlikeliest ally of all? In a suspenseful thriller that crackles with a palpable sense of loss, Quentin balks when asked by Ruth Crawford, the white mother of the young coed he was convicted of raping and murdering, to join in a search for the actual perpetrator. Did Quentin in fact kill Gwen Crawford? Has he only gotten off on a technicality as the police and Gwen's father Jack, a private investigator and former cop, believe? NYPD homicide detective Garnell Harris, called in by the state's Assistant Attorney General to consult on the reopened case, might be able to help sort out what really happened. But in the end it will be up to Quentin to join forces with Ruth. The two form an uneasy alliance, only to discover that sometimes, the one thing harder to find than forgiveness is the truth.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 381 pages
  • Publisher: Five Star (ME) (February 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594146527
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594146527
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14.5 x 2.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 567 g

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of Shamus-winner Straka's disappointing thriller, a departure from his popular Frank Pavlicek series (Cold Quarry, etc.), former campus security guard Quentin Price is released from an upstate New York prison. New DNA evidence suggests Price is not guilty of the crime for which he was convicted—the rape and murder of college student Gwen Crawford nearly a decade earlier. Now Ruth Crawford, the victim's mother, wants Price's help in tracking down the real culprit. When the New York State attorney general drafts Garnell Harris, a veteran NYPD homicide detective, to take a fresh look at Gwen's murder and its possible links to some recent killings, Price finds himself under pressure to bring the true killer to justice. The underdeveloped plot, an unsurprising resolution and the unconvincing 11th-hour redemption of a particularly nasty character make this one of Straka's lesser efforts. Hopefully, this talented author will return to form with his next book. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  21 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Winner From a Shamus Winner June 19 2008
By Kent Braithwaite - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Andy Straka is one of the best and the brightest of the new generation of crime fiction writers, and Straka has written another winning mystery novel, RECORD OF WRONGS. Its themes and plotline are ripped from today's headlines. You can actually hear Nancy Grace interviewing/attacking these leading characters. The story involves a Project Innocence exoneration of Quentin Price in a decade-old rape/murder due to fresh DNA evidence. The victim's mother, Ruth, recruits Price to look into what really happened to her daughter--who actually did rape and murder young Gwen. An NYPD detective is assigned to the cold case through quasi-official channels and the victim's father, Jack Crawford, a PI, also jumps into the investigation. One terrific story unfolds, and I recommend Andy Straka's latest work highly and without any reservations.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Record of Wrongs Sept. 10 2011
By Angelwrites - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book amazed and annoyed me with it's horrible editing. I've been buying these .99 cent books for my Kindle and I've enjoyed them but the lack of editing in many of them blows me away. This book used the wrong names for characters in a couple of spots and that was confusing...the misspellings, extra words,and missed words makes this the WORST edited book I've ever read. Having said that, as it turned out, I enjoyed this book immensely. I could really connect with the characters and the story itself kept me reading till the end. It was certainly worth the money... and worth overlooking the lack of editing.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average piece of crime fiction June 5 2008
By Richard Mabry - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I haven't had the opportunity to read Straka's previous, award-winning fiction, so I can't compare this one with those critically-acclaimed books. In this one, he demonstrates that he has a great ear for dialogue and paints excellent word pictures of scenes and setting. On the other hand, it was hard for me to get interested in the plot, and the characters seemed a bit flat. On the whole, I'd have to judge this as a pretty average work of crime fiction.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars fast-paced stand alone crime thriller Feb. 26 2008
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Former SUNY-Binghamton campus security guard Quentin Price spent almost a decade in a maximum security prison in Upstate New York for the rape and murder of student Gwen Crawford; their link being the library where she worked nights and he locked it up. Finally thanks to his persistent lawyer Christine Shackleford, DNA testing proved he did not commit the crime he was convicted of. The State of New York gives him forty dollars gate money and a bus ticket back to the county he was convicted in, Broome. While he was behind bars his mom died leaving him her bible that the Warden finally gives him as his mother's stipulation was upon his release; she always believed in her son.

Waiting outside to give him a lift is a face he will never forget; Christine's mother haunted his trial insuring his conviction. Apparently the incestuous Upstate New York prison system works as Ruth Crawford knows the head correctional officer who arranged their meeting. Ruth wants Quentin to find the real killer of her daughter, who brought sorrow and grief to both their families and so far got away with it. At the same time, New York State Deputy Attorney General Bollinger assigns NYPD homicide detective Garnell Harris to investigate the Crawford murder and some recent homicides that look similar. Harris and Quentin will meet on their respective inquiries.

Leaving Frank Pavlicek (see A WITNESS ABOVE) in Charlottesville, Virginia, Andy Straka provides a fast-paced stand alone crime thriller. The story line is fast-paced working along two COLD QUARRY investigations led by Price and Harris respectively ultimately converging. Although the ending seems too miraculous especially the salvation of an odious dark avenging angel, fans will enjoy this interesting whodunit although the sum of Price and Harris fails to equal the whole Pavlicek sleuthing.

Harriet Klausner
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Writing March 17 2012
By D. Figueroa - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I paid for this book and every other one of this author's books. I do not know him at all, not even online. That said, I think that this man is one of the most underrated authors around. Yes, he won a Shamus, but why he isn't famous, I just don't understand.

His work is simply amazing and Record of Wrongs is likely his best work to date.

The plot reads like something out of the headlines, it kept me up late and just about chewing my fingernails to shreds. He had me guessing right up to the very end.

Why other reviewers focused so much on some typos, which I understand were later fixed and yet managed to ignore the gripping suspense of the story, I just don't get. I literally couldn't put the book down.

I felt the mother's anguish and empathized with the hero's justified resentment of her and the authorities who were still trying to put him back in jail. I could feel the terror when he and the girl's mother were being attacked. The author paints word pictures so well that it all feels very, very real. Too bad that I can't, lol, my reviews are akin to watching the proverbial paint drying, sorry!

I loved all the falconry mysteries, too, but this book stands alone beautifully and is worth several times the price, even if it does have a typo or two... but again, other reviewers are saying they're gone, so don't miss out on this taut legal thriller.

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