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Past Due (Victor Carl Series) by William…
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Past Due (Victor Carl Series) (edition 2005)

by William Lashner (Author)

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1681106,917 (3.59)5
Member:RobertaLea
Title:Past Due (Victor Carl Series)
Authors:William Lashner (Author)
Info:HarperTorch (2005), Edition: Reprint, 576 pages
Collections:Your library
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Past Due by William Lashner

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Fourth in the series, and the best so far. ( )
  RobertaLea | Jul 11, 2019 |
Number 4 in the Victor Carl, Philadelphia defense lawyer, series.

This book opens and develops much in the same way that Lashner’s 3rd book, Fatal Flaw, did, in that the plot turns on an event in the past, a known event but one that has critical consequences for the action. The event is a death, a 20 year old murder in which Carl’s client, Joey Cheaps, was involved. Unfortunately, Joey has the nerve to be murdered on Lashner before paying his bills (typical), but in the same area in which the 20 year old murder took place.

Carl, who is nothing if not stubborn, decides to investigate Joey’s murder, getting into his usual trouble with the police and underworld figures. But at the same time, his own past comes due, as his father lays dying in a hospital, waiting for a risky operation that may save his life or hasten his death, and tells an unwilling Carl the story of his own first love--a nice counterpoint to the main plot.

Lashner really doesn’t write legal thrillers or police procedurals as much as he writes psychological “thrillers”, where EVERYBODY’S psyche is part of the plot--and he does this extremely well.

But his best point, as far as I’m concerned, is his character creation. Philadelphia is some weird place if it has only a fraction of the truly odd characters who populate Lashner’s novel. My favorite in this one is a vamp, a woman who lives totally for herself, sees her life as a work of art--Alura Strascinzky. Alura Strascinzky--are you serious? Lashner is, and she is one of his one-off wonders. I had already concluded that Lashner has a good deal of fun with his books, and this book just confirms me in that notion.

Lashner is excellent in evoking a sense of place and character. His plot is as always, convoluted, with extremely satisfying twists and turns. The books are well-written and tend to keep you up late at night. Highly recommended. ( )
1 vote Joycepa | Nov 24, 2010 |
Philadelphia lawyer Victor Carl is broke, as usual, and his father is lying in a hospital bed near death. Victor’s client Joey “Cheaps” Parma seeks Victor’s advice about a murder he was involved in 20 years before of Thomas Greeley, a law student/drug kingpin. Soon after his confession, Joey’s body is found on the waterfront, with his throat slit. Victor, always defender of the underdog, knows the police won’t put too much effort into finding Joey’s killer, so Victor commits to finding out why Joey was murdered. His investigation leads him back to Joey’s youth, and on to the people surrounding Thomas Greeley, including a present Supreme Court jurist and his strange wife and her life journals which hold the secret behind Joey’s death.

Victor Carl is perhaps the best character written today. His self-deprecating comments, inner turmoil, and reflections reveal a man whose demons from the past influence his present-day life. The relationship with his father, previously tumultuous, is now mellowing as his father’s health deteriorates. Lashner delivers intriguing characters with real depth and dimension. Victor Carl’s introspections are insightful and well-delivered and simply eloquent. The plot is a twisty one, and the read lengthier than most mysteries, but well worth the time. ( )
1 vote ctfrench | Jan 1, 2009 |
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William Lashnerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Borgers-Hoving, Rieksecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Haddad, NordineTraductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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There is something perversely cheerful about a crime scene in the middle of the night, the pulsating red and blue lights, the great beams of white, the strobes of photographers' flashes.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060508191, Mass Market Paperback)

It means something to be a client. It means he gets my loyalty, whether he deserves it or not. It means he gets my absolute best for the price of an hourly fee. It means in a world where every person has turned against him there is one person who will fight by his side for as long as there is a battle to be fought.
—Victor Carl

Author of the acclaimed novels Fatal Flaw, Bitter Truth, and Hostile Witness, bestselling writer William Lashner crafts dark, witty, engrossing tales of suspense involving one of the most intriguing characters of modern popular fiction: Victor Carl.

A defense attorney who lives his life in shades of gray, Victor Carl fights all the right fights for all the wrong reasons. With a failing legal practice, a dead-end love life, a pile of unpaid traffic tickets, and a talent for mixing it up in tough working-class bars and sparring with obstinate cops, Victor skates on the razor's edge of legal ethics in search of the easy buck. But the one absolute in Victor's life is loyalty, especially to a client—even if he happens to be dead. Like Joey Cheaps, a no-account who takes a knife to the throat down on the waterfront, but not before he shares with his lawyer his part in a terrible crime.

With his client murdered, Victor must search for a killer. But solving the crime means investigating the darkest spot in Joey Cheaps's misspent youth, sending Victor on a twisting journey that leads to a missing suitcase stuffed with money, photographs of a mysterious naked woman, and a Supreme Court justice with a secret to hide. And most dangerous of all, Victor steps into the crosshairs of a vengeful enemy with a past full of pain and a taste for blood.

As thrilling as it is darkly evocative, Past Due is a superb tale of crime and justice that takes the intrepid Victor Carl into brilliant new territory and confirms William Lashner's place among the top suspense writers of our time.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:17 -0400)

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When Joey Cheaps is murdered less than twenty-four hours after telling Victor Carl a twenty-year-old secret, Victor decides to investigate, but soon finds his own life threatened.

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