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Night Work Paperback

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Orion
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752885944
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752885940
  • Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 2.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 458 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
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Format: Audio CD
Looks can be deceiving, and so can feelings. Joe Trumbull learned this lesson not just the hard way but in a way that was almost fatal. To date, life hasn't been good to him. He's a juvenile probation officer in Kingston, New York. Some of the kids are petty offenders, others could be classified as hard-boiled criminals. So, we'd assume Joe was a pretty savvy guy. Perhaps so, but his mind is also clouded by tragedy.

It was two years ago that he was looking forward to marrying Laurel. Then, on the night of his bachelor party she was strangled. Since then Joe has turned inward, retreated, doing his job and working out at the gym. But now he thinks that just maybe he's ready to make a better kind of life for himself, so he goes out on a blind date. Surprisingly to him the evening went well. Shocking to him was the murder of his date later that same evening.

As other women are killed, women who had some contact with Joe, the police zero in on him as suspect No. 1. It seems the only way he can clear himself is to find the psychotic killer who is intent upon destroying him.

Edgar and Shamus winner Steve Hamilton has crafted a suspenseful tale, which is read by another winner - Dick Hill. Named a Golden Voice and a Voice of the Century by Audiophile magazine, Hill delivers one more stunning narration.

- Gail Cooke
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In this novel, Hamilton introduces a new character, probation officer and recreational boxer Joe Trumbull, who has lost the love of his life two years ago and is just getting back to the dating scene. Don't worry, this isn't a romance novel, but an interesting mystery. It starts off kinda slow, so you need to be patient, because it gets suspenseful and hard to put down. Early on, you may not believe it, but hang in there, because the pace quickens and the ending is worth the wait (I won't spoil it). You don't know who the killer is until late in the novel. I guessed correctly, but you don't really know until late in the book. I recommend this novel, and I also recommend Hamilton's series featuring Alex McKnight, but I suggest starting with the first in the series, A Cold Day in Paradise. Night Work is a stand-alone, for now (I'd like to see more of Joe Trumbull), so go ahead and read it now :D
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xb49e1c6c) out of 5 stars 65 reviews
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb481c690) out of 5 stars "After two long years, it was time to start my life again." Sept. 26 2007
By E. Bukowsky - Published on
Format: Hardcover
In "Night Work," Steve Hamilton introduces Joe Trumbull, a probation officer who lives and works in upstate New York. Joe is "part cop, part social worker, part guidance counselor, part rehab coordinator, part bounty hunter." His job is multifaceted: he visits his clients' homes and drags them out of bed, investigates their family lives, and writes up sentencing recommendations for the court. If he suggests probation and the judge agrees, then Joe tries to help his "knuckleheads," mostly kids in need of supervision, to stay out of prison. Joe is "your official court-designated guardian angel." He lives in a dumpy apartment above a gym, adores jazz, and dabbles in boxing.

Two years earlier, Joe's fiancée, Laurel, was murdered just days before their wedding. The case is still open. Lonely and afraid of staying that way, Joe puts a listing in a singles' site and lands a blind date with a beautiful woman. In a humorous opening, Joe approaches his evening out as if he were facing an impending execution. Fortunately, he and his companion hit it off and, for the first time in a long while, Joe is looking forward to the future. Unfortunately, a series of unexpected and terrifying events follow that make Joe the prime suspect in a series of homicides. To clear his name, he will need to find the answer to a crucial question: Who hates him enough to want to destroy him?

Steve Hamilton made his reputation with the solid Alex McNight series, and although this thriller lacks the punch of Hamilton's earlier books, it does have its strengths. Hamilton wisely sets his story in an offbeat location, Kingston, New York, and he gives his protagonist an occupation (probation officer) that is also a bit different. Joe is likeable enough, the writing is crisp and direct, and the mystery is fairly suspenseful. The only negative is that "Night Work" adheres too closely to the old formula: Nice guy tries to get over the death of his fiancée. He suddenly finds himself on the run from the cops, who suspect him of being a serial killer. He must find the real perpetrator before the detectives take him into custody. We have seen this plot too many times before, and Hamilton does not provide enough variations on this familiar theme to make his novel stand out from the crowd.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb481cf90) out of 5 stars Probation Officer Makes for Intriguing Change of Focus April 6 2009
By James Miller - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I approached this novel with a little different angle. I am a retired big city probation officer, and I know that while P.O.'s are quite central to the criminal justice system, they almost never make it into novels, movies, TV shows. The novels came first, and since there is no tradition of probation officer fiction, there are few, if any, movies, and no TV shows featuring P.O.'s.

Ross McDonough wrote a good mystery in the 1950's, Meet Me at the Morgue, with a probation officer at the center, but Bantam Books thought Howard Cross wasn't hard bitten enough for the paperback trade, so there were no more Howard Cross mysteries. And so it goes. Revenge goes down better in the mystery trade than redemption.

So... I was impressed with Night Work. Steve Hamilton got the essentials of the probation officer line of work down right, and he made the contradictory mission of P.O.'s into the driving force of a plot with multiple murders. P.O. Joe Trumbull has come into contact with many hundreds of troubled people in his seven years on the job. When your job is redemption, then there are hundreds of ways for you to fail. The "T" you didn't cross, the "I" you didn't dot: you may have had a good reason, but you never know if and when you will pay. I can remember my own self thinking, please let no one die on my watch.

I hope that we see more of this small town probation officer from the Hudson Valley.
14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb481cb1c) out of 5 stars Dark, depressing, downer... Oct. 26 2007
By Longstreet - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a big fan of Steve Hamilton's previous books, Night Work came as a huge disappointment. Aside from the incredibly gloomy storyline, everything was too predictable. As Hamilton has proven himself to be a truly talented writer in the past, I continued reading this book with the assumption that the plot would take a surprising turn or, at least, I would see some of his enjoyable, lighthearted humor. Sadly, none of this happened. Not only was the story enormously dismal and dark, but everything was way too predictable. While I'm usually the last guy to figure out whodunit, Hamilton did everything but put a neon sign around the villain's neck very early in the book. Hopefully, Hamilton will drop the dull main character and sad tale of Night Work, and get back on track with his next novel.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb4826504) out of 5 stars Engrossing thriller Dec 28 2009
By Julia Flyte - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Joe Trumbell works in upstate New York as a probation officer. When the book opens he is about to go on a blind date: his first since his fiancee Laurel was murdered two years ago. The date with Marlene goes very well - but shortly afterwards her dead body is found. Despite assertations to the contrary, it is clear that Trumbull is the police's best suspect. As the evidence against him mounts, he becomes determined to find the killer and to clear his name before it's too late.

The storyline is a familiar one, but Hamilton has an enjoyable writing style and injects enough twists and surprises to hold the reader's interest. I was trying to make sense of the clues along the way but didn't guess what the final outcome would be. After a slightly slow start, the book picks up momentum and makes for a fast read to the end. Yes the eventual conclusion is pretty silly, but no worse than most books in this genre. I enjoyed this book.

Steve Hamilton is the author of a great series about a retired cop living in Paradise, Michigan. (If you haven't read any of them, start with A Cold Day in Paradise). Night Work is a one-off standalone novel, although on his website he suggests that there will be future books about Joe Trumbull.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xb48266b4) out of 5 stars They are all excellent, though I have NO credentials as Jan. 3 2015
By triman - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
I am reading the last of his ten novels, Lock Artist. They are all excellent, though I have NO credentials as.a literary critic. I grew up and live in Michigan with much time "up north." This makes them even more enjoyable. I sincerely hope there are more Alex McKnight books. Fans were saddened world wide when G M Fraser died, and there were no more new Flashman books. I read all of them from Amazon, and highly recommend them. I also, through Amazon (kindle of course) read all the Gabriel Allon books by Silva.
Gary Trock

If Amazon has any clout please convince Mr. Hamilton and Mr. Silva to keep writing

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