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Raylan Givens

Elmore Leonard is, by far, one of the most heralded suspense/fiction writers of all time. And, one of his best characters is Federal Marshal Raylan Givens.

In this new episode in Raylan’s life, the Harlan County, Kentucky coal mines are closing and whacky weed, more commonly known as marijuana is becoming the cash crop of the state. The sale of said weed can bring in lots of money but, two of the dope dealers, Dickie and Coover Crowe have decided to go into a new business, selling body parts, especially kidneys, which is a very lucrative case crop.

It becomes a case for US Marshal Givens, a man of few words who works on many cases at one time, carries a gun (is also a very fast draw), and always shoots to kill. However, by the time Raylan zeroes in on the Crowe brothers as the culprits he is about to have one of his kidneys removed by Layla, a transplant nurse.

This book is filled with fascinating characters including, of course Raylan himself along with a few very deadly ladies. Layla, the nurse that collects body parts and puts them on the market for ten thousand apiece; Carol, a coal-mine executive who will order her men to shoot anyone who stands in the way of her advancement; and Jackie, who is a poker playing genius who is being tracked at the moment by Raylan.

This is a great Leonard book full of humor, great dialogue and suspense that keep readers going back for more. He is, by far the King of suspense humor.

Book Blurb for Raylan

The revered New York Times bestselling author, recognized as “America’s greatest crime writer” (Newsweek), brings back U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, the mesmerizing hero of Pronto, Riding the Rap, and the hit FX series Justified.

With the closing of the Harlan County, Kentucky, coal mines, marijuana has become the biggest cash crop in the state. A hundred pounds of it can gross $300,000, but that’s chump change compared to the quarter million a human body can get you—especially when it’s sold off piece by piece.

So when Dickie and Coover Crowe, dope-dealing brothers known for sampling their own supply, decide to branch out into the body business, it’s up to U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens to stop them. But Raylan isn’t your average marshal; he’s the laconic, Stetson-wearing, fast-drawing lawman who juggles dozens of cases at a time and always shoots to kill. But by the time Raylan finds out who’s making the cuts, he’s lying naked in a bathtub, with Layla, the cool transplant nurse, about to go for his kidneys.

The bad guys are mostly gals this time around: Layla, the nurse who collects kidneys and sells them for ten grand a piece; Carol Conlan, a hard-charging coal-mine executive not above ordering a cohort to shoot point-blank a man who’s standing in her way; and Jackie Nevada, a beautiful sometime college student who can outplay anyone at the poker table and who suddenly finds herself being tracked by a handsome U.S. marshal.

Dark and droll, Raylan is pure Elmore Leonard—a page-turner filled with the sparkling dialogue and sly suspense that are the hallmarks of this modern master.

Night Owl Reviews Mar, 2012 4.50