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137 Reviews
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5.0 out of 5 stars Prayers for Rain
The only thing I can say about Dennis Lehane is: "When's the next one going to print?" For myself, I thought 'Prayers' dialogue was a bit snappier, more colorful, than the others but that's me. One of the many things I enjoy about Lehane's writing is that he puts as much effort into the last ten pages as he did the first ten. In detective and mystery stories, that's rare...
Published on May 19 2004 by R. J. Nagel

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
this is likely his worst
Published 6 days ago by Shirley Brown


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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Terrific, Jan. 17 2003
By 
M. C. Albano (Fishers, IN United States) - See all my reviews
A guilty pleasue that makes you want to go out and buy ALL of Lehane's other books. The characters, plot twists, storyline,and dialogue are all fantastic. ONE PROBLEM: You won't be able to tear yourself away from it for work, sleep, etc.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Can't ask for more in a thriller., Jan. 7 2003
By 
Steven Laine (Pleasanton, CA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
In the last 30 day I've read all five of Lehane' Kinzie/Gennaro books, finishing Prayers for Rain last night. Lehane has created a terrific franchise in the mystery/thriller arena with his realistic and (more importantly) entertaining pair of detectives. You like these people he's created and believe their motives for what they choose to do as they trek through the plot. Clearly I've found a lot of compelling entertainment in these stories.
The first book in the series, A Drink Before the War, really sucked me in, being in the same vein as the Elvis Cole series by Robert Crais which I also recommend. Both series are consistently well-written, a clear step (or two) above pop/trash/beach fiction, funny, intelligent stories where the plot make sense, and the characters seem frighteningly real. It turned out that the first Kinzie/Gennaro yarn was the lightest. Each one after has ratcheted up the twists and turns, but kept the personality of the characters growing and building. The stories definitely got blacker and bleaker in the depraved actions of the bad guys. By Prayers for Rain, the villain is a hardcore-fulltime psychopath, and Patrick and Angie are a-little-further-than-borderline vigilantes.
After racing through five of the books in so short a period, I am struck with a sense of vulnerability. If some bad dude makes it their career to mess with you, and if they have no normal limits to their behavior, you're just screwed. How can a normal, follow the rules type of citizen even comprehend the introduction of aggression and violence into their regular lives? Unless you have friends to help you out like Kenzie and Gennaro you might as well move out of the country and hope you're never found. Read these, you'll like them.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Series still good, but getting old, Jan. 5 2003
By 
Bill Garrison (Oklahoma City, OK USA) - See all my reviews
Prayers for Rain is the last in the Kenzie, Gennarro detective series, and it starts to show that Lehane made a good choice in changing characters for his most recent novel, Mystic River (a great book).
This is the 5th in the series, and some of the dialogue between Patrick, Angie and Bubba gets old and I just skip over it because it really adds nothing to the story. Like in Darkness Take My Hand (the best in the series) Lehane does a great job of plotting and shifts the focus of the plot halfway through the book from why a woman killed herself, to who perhaps made her kill herself.
Lehane is a good author and I recommend everyone of his books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars So good that I want another one!, Dec 11 2002
By 
S. Gould "gouldpjaks" (Woodmere, NY United States) - See all my reviews
When Patrick Kenzie's 'friend' commits suicide he finds it difficult to reconcile her demise with the life of the gentle woman he knew. Thus begins his search into the mystery surrounding her death. With his partner and sometimes lover Angela Genarro he discovers the psychotic killer who has terrorized his friend. Now he and Angela become targets of this sadistic madman. Stories like this have been written before but not with such frightening realism and intensity. Lehane's writing has a dark edge to it but the emotional ties between Patrick and Angela create a contrast that makes the story human and compelling.
I read and enjoyed this book a while ago and I'm still waiting for the next entry in this incredibly well written series.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Blame it on the genre, July 24 2002
By 
Dave Schwinghammer "Dave Schwinghammer" (Little Falls, Minnesota USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
If you're expecting another MYSTIC RIVER, think again. This is genre fiction, a hard-boiled mystery/thriller in the tradition of Robert Parker. PRAYERS FOR RAIN is also the fifth in a series with the recurring characters Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro.
At the beginning private detective Kenzie helps Karen Nichols discourage a stalker. Six months later, she's dead, having jumped from the top of Boston's Custom House. Several weeks before she'd died, Kenzie had neglected to return her phone call, and he feels guilty. He can't believe the same girl (A fifties type with the personality of a Barbie Doll) had become a drug-addicted prostitute.
I always like to reread the blurbs when I finish with a novel, just to see if the reviewers actually read the novel. One mentions the "wonderfully rounded characters." Bubba Rogowski, a former special forces operative, is about as rounded as Rambo, and Angela and Patrick aren't much better. They're former partners at the beginning (she's working for a security company), but it doesn't take much foresight to know they'll be back together shortly. The dialogue also bothered me quite a bit; it's supposed to be snappy, but Lehane doesn't know when to quit, and the characters all have the same voice (Lehane's).
There are some pretty good fight scenes in the beginning, but I was disappointed by the climax. One thing about series novels: you always know nothing too bad is going to happen to the main character. We also have, count them, three villains. Lehane had me really hating Cody Falk, the original stalker, but he's soon replaced by Karen's step brother and then by this postal clerk who seems to be impersonating the step brother.
I was really amazed at the difference between this novel and MYSTIC RIVER, which is darn near perfect. At first I thought this might be an early work, but Lehane actually wrote A DRINK BEFORE THE WAR, DARKNESS TAKE MY HAND, SACRED, and GONE, BABY, GONE before this one, so I guess you have to blame it on the genre.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Guy's Best Book, July 23 2002
I discovered Mr. Lehane when I picked up Mystic River on a whim. In that novel, his character studies were so rich and well written, I immediately went out and purchased all of his other books. Perfect for "beside the pool" summer reading, I have completed all of them in less than three weeks. In my opinion, this is his best. Same quick, sharp, humorous style as the others, but Prayers for Rain, I thought, offered the most challenging and curious plot.
My best advice, actually, if you are willing to devote the time, is read them all. And, if you do, read them in order. If your taste for detective mysteries doesn't run that deep, I would introduce myself to Mr. Kenzie and Ms. Gennaro right here with Prayers for Rain. I bet it will make you read at least one more!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Prayers for Rain, April 20 2002
By 
Dave (Tully, NY United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Prayers For Rain (Hardcover)
Dennis Lehane's "Prayers for Rain" is in many ways a work of fantasy. It's like a good Chuck Norris action film, Clint Eastwood western, or James Bond flick, light on motivation and complexity but strong on style, street smarts, machismo, and the thrills of violence. You don't watch "A Fistful of Dollars" to see the Man with No Name discover inner peace and turn in his guns. You don't want Charles Bronson to forgive the sociopaths who raped his wife and daughter and grow all sensitive and needy. No, you watch these screen characters -- the way you read about Lehane's Patrick Kenzie, Angie Gennarro, and Bubba Rogowski -- because an adolescent, nihilistic chamber of your mind responds to them. Improbable action and dialog? OK, some. Holes here and there in the plot? Maybe a few. Pop psychology masquerading as dark insight? Perhaps. Just keep in mind that, from a literary standpoint, this book is hamburger, not filet mignon. It's beef stew, not beef Stroganoff. But if you can enjoy it for what it is -- a hip thriller, an entertaining read, a testosterone high -- then you'll have as much fun with it as I did.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping Psychological Thriller; Unforgettable Characters, April 6 2002
I was really wowed by this novel, the first I have read by Dennis Lehane. I really enjoyed the characters as well--Boston P.I. Patrick McKenzie, his trenchcoat wearing boyhood friend and gun runner Bubba Rogowski and his former partner Angie Gennaro, who grandfather is with the italian mob.
McKenzie is hired by Karen Nichols to stop a stalker. McKenzie and Bubba deliver a not so subtle threat/beating and all seems well. Mc Kenzie does not have time to return a second call from Nichols and the next time he hears about her is about her suicide on the news. Feeling guilty that he should have responded earlier, McKenzie starts investigating a bizzare case of psychological warfare, blackmail and murder that is fascinating and chilling all at once. There are lots of bad guys, including Nichols heartless parents and step brother. All is not what it seems in this broad conspiracy of evil. When the identity of the villain is revealed, the warfare becomes very personal, with the fight to the death.
Compelling,scary, and hard-to-put down, Prayers for Rain is not to be missed!!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE THIS SERIES !, March 28 2002
By A Customer
I was recently turned on to Dennis Lehane through an article written by Nora Roberts. He's one of her favorites. I already am a devotee of her "In Death" series, and was not disappointed in this recommendation. After I read "A Drink Before the War", I was so enthralled by the quality of the writing and the characters, I proceeded to my nearest library and read the rest of the books in succession. These books are terrific escapist reading, and Dennis Lehane is one terrific writer.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Prayers for Rain, March 2 2002
By 
Janet Slezak "book addict" (Stratford, CT United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
"Prayers for Rain" is another awesome addition to the Kenzie/Gennaro series from one of the great writers of today. Karen Nichols asks Patrick to help her be rid of a man who is stalking her and with Bubba's help they think her troubles are over; an easy case? Of course not! Sometime later Patrick finds a message from her on his answering machine and doesn't take the time to call her back because "he's busy." Then later, he hears of her suicide and because he feels he let her down he has to find out what could have caused her to take her own life. So, along with Angie and Bubba they investigate and find distubing things about how she spent her last few months and as in all of Dennis Lehane's novels, the story takes enough twists and turns that you can't help but keep reading to find out how this powerful story ends. If you haven't read any of this series yet; start now because you won't be disappointed!!
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Prayers For Rain
Prayers For Rain by Dennis Lehane (Mass Market Paperback - July 19 2010)
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