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The Ethical Assassin: A Novel
by David Liss
References to this work on external resources.
Wikipedia in English
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 140006421X, Hardcover)Edgar award-winning author of the popular historical novels A Conspiracy of Paper and A Spectacle of Corruption, David Liss showcases his amazing versatility with this brilliant new tale of contemporary suspense: a literary thriller set in Florida, where killing is a matter of conscience.
No one is more surprised than Lem Altick when it turns out he’s actually good at peddling encyclopedias door to door. He hates the predatory world of sales, but he needs the money to pay for college. Then things go horribly wrong. In a sweltering trailer in rural Florida, a couple whom Lem has spent hours pitching is shot dead before his eyes, and the unassuming young man is suddenly pulled into the dark world of conspiracy and murder. Not just murder: assassination– or so claims the killer, the mysterious and strangely charismatic Melford Kean, who has struck without remorse and with remarkable good cheer. But the self-styled ethical assassin hadn’t planned on a witness, and so he makes Lem a deal: Stay quiet and there will be no problems. Go to the police and take the fall.
Before Lem can decide, he is drawn against his will into the realm of the assassin, a post-Marxist intellectual with whom he forms an unlikely (and perhaps unwise) friendship. The ethical assassin could be a charming sociopath, eco-activist, or vigilante for social justice. To unravel the mystery and save himself, Lem must descend deep into a bizarre world he never knew existed, where a group of desperate–and genuinely deranged–schemers have hatched a plan that will very likely keep Lem from leaving town alive.
David Liss skillfully interweaves a gallery of eccentric characters with a multilayered plot characterized by its unpredictable twists and turns. The Ethical Assassin is a brilliant, darkly comic novel that will leave readers in suspense until the very last page.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 14 Apr 2011 14:32:05 -0400)
While working as a door-to-door encyclopedia salesman as a means of paying for his college tuition, seventeen-year-old Lemuel Altick witnesses the double assassination of two clients to whom he's about to close a sale. Surprised by Lemuel's presence, the assassin forces Lemuel to become complicit in the murder an event that instigates Lemuel's exposure to the previously hidden underworld surrounding him. Soon, Lemuel must contend with a boss involved in peddling crystal meth, a crooked cop who owns a hog farm, and a slick-talking assassin who launches into diatribes about the animal rights movement.
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