Hope to Die PDF/EPUB ¾ Hope to PDF/EPUB or

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10 thoughts on “Hope to Die

  1. Bill Kerwin Bill Kerwin says:

    This is a professional and enjoyable entry in a superb series Detective Scudder may be getting old sixty two years old in this adventure , but the series hardly show its age And yetthere s a new darkness here a forced, sensationalist darkness And I doubt it bodes well for the future.The plot is interesting There has been a bloody invasion of an upscale brownstone, and the couple who owned it have been murdered The crime apparently has solved itself, for the two burglars have been disco This is a professional and enjoyable entry in a superb series Detective Scudder may be getting old sixty two years old in this adventure , but the series hardly show its age And yetthere s a new darkness here a forced, sensationalist darkness And I doubt it bodes well for the future.The plot is interesting There has been a bloody invasion of an upscale brownstone, and the couple who owned it have been murdered The crime apparently has solved itself, for the two burglars have been discovered with their bags of loot, dead in a murder suicide But Matt soon begins to suspect that a third man may have been involved, a third man who may a dangerous, very clever criminal.I liked this book for the rare glimpse it gives us into Matt s life and its present consequences we get to observe him with his two sons from a previous marriage, and their meeting leads to a moral problem that his present wife Elaine helps him solve.I also was intrigued by the personality of the murderer Block allows us to get a rare glimpse of his killer from the inside, and we see the workings of the mind that produces characteristic crimes it is a very clever mind, addicted to creating situations that are too cute, filled with ironies, hidden clues and suggestive aliases It is this too cute behavior that puts Matt Scudder on his trail Perhaps most memorably, we are allowed to watch someone commit murder once for profit only to find he wishes to commitfor pleasure He finds that he enjoys it, and his transformation into a serial killer makes this novel particularly terrifying.Stillit seemed to me that Block relishes the mind of the killer a little too much, that he becomes a voyeur intruding on his own vision Many of the explicit details he relates to us are shocking and titillating but finally these narrative shocks seem a little too easy and leave the reader with a sour taste in the mouth Bottom line the murderer takes over too much of the action and puts our hero Matt in the background The ending terrifies and disturbs the reader, true, but ultimately it does not satisfy


  2. James Thane James Thane says:

    I ve noted several times on this site that Lawrence Block s Matthew Scudder series is my favorite of all crime fiction series If I were cast away on the proverbial desert island and could take only one series with me, I wouldn t hesitate a second before grabbing these books off the shelf.That said, even in your favorite series, there must of necessity be one book that you like above all the others and another that is your least favorite And for me, Hope To Die is my least favorite of the Scudd I ve noted several times on this site that Lawrence Block s Matthew Scudder series is my favorite of all crime fiction series If I were cast away on the proverbial desert island and could take only one series with me, I wouldn t hesitate a second before grabbing these books off the shelf.That said, even in your favorite series, there must of necessity be one book that you like above all the others and another that is your least favorite And for me, Hope To Die is my least favorite of the Scudder novels, even though it s still a very good read.The book opens with the brutal murder of a Manhattan couple who return home from a concert and find burglars waiting for them Coincidentally, Matthew Scudder and his wife, Elaine, had attended the same concert Only a few days later, the killers also turn up dead, still in possession of virtually all of the loot from the burglary It appears that one of the burglars killed the other and then shot himself.For the cops, it s a neat, tidy package and they re happy to wrap it up and move on But the victims niece is troubled and asks Scudder to look into the case Matt agrees and quickly comes to the conclusion that all is not as it appears and that there s another person involved who was the mastermind behind the crime and who then killed his two associates Proving it, though, and getting the cops to reopen a closed case will be another matter all together And in the meantime, the killer that Matt has deduced out of the evidence may have other victims already in his sightsThis is a perfectly serviceable story, and it s an entertaining read that keeps you turning the pages The problem, at least for me, is that it just doesn t feel like a Matthew Scudder novel Matt s wife, Elaine, and his sidekick, T.J., are present throughout, and his gangster friend, Mick Ballou, makes a cameo appearance There are references to Matt s days as an alcoholic, but somehow a lot of it seems pro forma in this case.The real problem that I had with the book is a major disruption that first occurs about 90 pages into the book The fourteen previous Scudder novels were all narrated in Matt s first person voice The reader knew nothing that Matt didn t know Then, all of a sudden, 90 pages into the fifteenth book, the POV switches to a third person view of a serial killer plotting his moves.The first time I read this book, I stared at it in disbelief when this shift occurred It totally threw me and kept me pretty much off balance as the POV then continued to shift back and forth throughout the book Beyond that, Matt seems less introspective in this book, even though he spends some time ruminating on the fact that he is getting older 62 at this point Clearly the world is changing, as one would inevitably expect But this doesn t feel like Scudder s world nearly to the extent that it does in the other books in the series.As I suggested above, from any other author and in any other series, this would be a pretty good book But from this author and in this series, it s a bit of a disappointment, at least by comparison to the other entries view spoiler Two or three other things really bothered me about this book First of all, the killer s general plan seemed awfully far fetched His aim is to ultimately own the house of the couple he murdered, but his method of accomplishing this is scarcely believable Secondly, the killer escapes in the end The police and Scudder believe that he has been burned beyond recognition in a fire They realize there s the possibility that he has faked his death and escaped but they are generally agreed that the guy is dead.He isn t The book closes with the killer riding off into the sunset, apparently setting up a sequel This leads to the last thing that bothered me about the book in that the killer gets the last word Block writes a very nice chapter, narrated by Scudder, that would have been a good finish But instead of ending there, he tacks on one last chapter from the killer s POV as he drives away, planning his next adventure.I never thought I d live to see the day when Matthew Scudder could not even get the last word in a Matthew Scudder novel hide spoiler


  3. Kemper Kemper says:

    At this point Matt Scudder is 62 years old, happily married and semi retired But don t think that he s content with just hitting the early bird special at the nearest buffet or spending his time arguing with empty chairs The murder of a wealthy couple shocks New York, and the case catches Matt s interest because he had attended the same event they were at before they were killed But the discovery of a murder suicide of two men leaves a mountain of evidence proving they were the killers so who At this point Matt Scudder is 62 years old, happily married and semi retired But don t think that he s content with just hitting the early bird special at the nearest buffet or spending his time arguing with empty chairs The murder of a wealthy couple shocks New York, and the case catches Matt s interest because he had attended the same event they were at before they were killed But the discovery of a murder suicide of two men leaves a mountain of evidence proving they were the killers so whole thing is wrapped up quickly After meeting a relative of the couple with a few misgivings about the case, Matt slowly drifts into an informal investigation and finds clues that point to a third man behind it all.As usual there s a personal subplot with Matt feeling guilty and edgy after a strained encounter with his grown sons at a family funeral Matt walked out on his boys when they were young and while he supported them financially and tried to be part of their lives, he realizes that he s never going to be anyone s nomination for Father Of The Year Block plays up that angle by using Matt s young associate TJ a lot in this one and their interactions highlight that while Matt might not have done well by his biological kids, he s been a good friend and role model to this surrogate son.There s also a very nasty and creepy villain at work in this one, and I absolutely loved the process by which Matt eventually starts piecing this mystery together Random personal trivia I met Lawrence Block when he was on tour for this book back in 2001 He politely answered my question about why in the hell Whoopi Goldberg had been cast as Bernie Rhodenbarr in the Burglar movie even though he had obviously been asked this a couple of thousand times before, and he gave a great reading of the Scudder short story The Night and the Music that I still think about whenever I pick up one of these books


  4. Dan Schwent Dan Schwent says:

    The Hollanders are brutally killed by a pair of burglars who have a falling out and kill each other At least, that s how it appears initially Matthew Scudder takes a closer look and stumbles upon a serial killer Can he stop the killer before he kills again Once again, Block pulled the wool over my eyes I knew my guess as to who the killer was was wrong when I noticed there were 120 pages left Block planted a series of red herrings and Scudder and I both fell for them initially The killer w The Hollanders are brutally killed by a pair of burglars who have a falling out and kill each other At least, that s how it appears initially Matthew Scudder takes a closer look and stumbles upon a serial killer Can he stop the killer before he kills again Once again, Block pulled the wool over my eyes I knew my guess as to who the killer was was wrong when I noticed there were 120 pages left Block planted a series of red herrings and Scudder and I both fell for them initially The killer was cold and scarily reallistic The chapters told from the killer s point of view were pretty chilling.I ve touted Matthew Scudder s supporting cast and character development as favorite attractions of the series While we get appearances by Danny Boy Bell and Joe Durkin and a cameo by Mick Ballou, that s about as many of the continuing supporting cast appears Actually, Matt s relationship with his estranged sons changes quite a bit, now that I think about it TJ trying to get Matt to use a cellphone and a computer are amusing Plus, how many detectives age as their further adventures are chronicled Matt was 44 in the first book Now he s 62.While Hope to Die isn t my favorite Matthew Scudder books, it s still really good Not to be missed by Matthew Scudder fans


  5. carol. carol. says:

    I didn t have anything to say to that And the anger I d felt before was gone now, stuffed wherever that sort of thing gets stuffed If I felt anything it was an almighty weariness I wanted this little talk to be over and I knew it was going to go on forever And that, in a nutshell, is the emotional tone of Hope to Die A book filled with sober melancholy Matt s ex s death and seeing his sons for the first time in four years brings a miasma of discontent to the story Though Block tries to h I didn t have anything to say to that And the anger I d felt before was gone now, stuffed wherever that sort of thing gets stuffed If I felt anything it was an almighty weariness I wanted this little talk to be over and I knew it was going to go on forever And that, in a nutshell, is the emotional tone of Hope to Die A book filled with sober melancholy Matt s ex s death and seeing his sons for the first time in four years brings a miasma of discontent to the story Though Block tries to hook us in during the first chapter with Matt s imagining the viewpoint of a couple in a double homicide and robbery, his fabrication is not enough to build a great deal of interest in the crime Once the killers are found in a locked apartment, supposedly victims of a murder suicide, the city forgets about it However, it isn t long before TJ and a friend rope Matt into investigating the double homicide It isn t so much that he thinks the case is worthy he wants to a distraction to pull him out of the emotional fog Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic Matt s clearly avoiding dealing with the emotions his estranged family rouses in him.Pacing was enjoyable once the actual investigation gets underway As always, the relationship between Scudder and TJ is deceptively pleasant and easy, and it becomes clear that TJ is a second chance for Scudder to positively influence a son In keeping with the mournful tone, there wasn t quite as much as Block s usual humorous asides, and the city scape seemed a little drab, except, perhaps, the house undergoing renovation and paying off an inspector One potential spoilery note on point of view view spoiler I take exception to Block s effort to include the killer s viewpoint, however It seems like standard boilerplate, takes away from Block s normal subtle building of the cityscape and its characters, and does little in its attempts to ratchet up tension I find narration by the antagonist generally uninteresting, and feel it usually represents a weak attempt to invest tension into a story A story about deconditioning an allergy to a pet is horrifying and somewhat useless, especially in parallel to the current case Combining it with an internet chat forum devoted to serial killers was just annoying and pandering to sensationalism Block uses it less ineptly than most, but I can t help but feel it represents an attempt to up the juice when, just perhaps, he may be getting the slightest bit bored with Scudder We ll see not manybooks in the series left hide spoiler While there was some effort to bring in the depth and reflection found in early Scudder books, both Matt and Block feel half hearted in their sincerity The ploy of Elaine and Matt attending the donor s dinner at Lincoln Center seems forced, when I can t remember Matt referencing classical music before Block making a point of Matt s appreciation for jazz and classical music, then dropping a bunch of classical composer names and performances seems incongruous I think back to prior books, and remember a passion for Chinese food one book, diner food another, evenings out at Mick s, and attending an SM club, and I wonder if actually, instead of Block showing us previously unknown sides of Matt s personality, he s just giving him whatever interest that book needs, or whatever New York scene we haven t delved into before Block also has becomeovert in describing Scudder s emotional issues Unfortunately, that became kind of a sticking point for me in a series that originally stood on it s subtle and complex characterizations Overall, the mystery was moderately interesting, with a couple of false leads, one or twoobvious than I prefer I love TJ s dynamic role I like that Matt got drawn in by emotions and grief of the victim s daughter, Kristin Her character was wonderfully developed, along with the characters of the various investigating detectives It was particularly nice to not blame the prematurely closed case on incompetent police work The bit character of the antiques dealer that lives on the ground floor was vintage New York view spoiler However, I take issue with the plot device of revealing the wrong person as killer I feel like Matt s too sophisticated and aware of justice issues to make this mistake He s hardly been the law abiding type hide spoiler I d recommend it for Scudder fans, but it sits at about a solid three stars for me in the Scudder continuum


  6. David Schaafsma David Schaafsma says:

    This 15th novel in Lawrence Block s Matt Scudder mystery series finds the formerly alcoholic detective sober, happy, bored and kinda boring From Hell s Kitchen to Lincoln Center I just so happened to read and finish it almost simultaneously with one I had skipped, When the Sacred Ginmill Closes, 6, which I like much, much better Part of it is just a matter of taste, a preference for my noir novels to be in the lower versus the upper middle class.This one opens with Matt and Elaine returning This 15th novel in Lawrence Block s Matt Scudder mystery series finds the formerly alcoholic detective sober, happy, bored and kinda boring From Hell s Kitchen to Lincoln Center I just so happened to read and finish it almost simultaneously with one I had skipped, When the Sacred Ginmill Closes, 6, which I like much, much better Part of it is just a matter of taste, a preference for my noir novels to be in the lower versus the upper middle class.This one opens with Matt and Elaine returning home to their Upper West Side brownstone after a concert at Lincoln Center Alice Tully Hall Two people who also attended the concert they discover the next morning are now dead, in what seems to have been a botched burglary their daughter Kristin hires Matt to investigate things since the cops think the case is closed The assumed murderers also dead in what the cops think for some odd reason is a murder suicide The big problem with this one is that Block tries something different here in alternating Scudder s narration with the voice of a psychopath, who also writes about his crimes on a serial killer website yep, I guess these kinds of actually might exist I really, really don t appreciate the perspective of a serial killer It s just off putting to me and takes us away from the key interest in the series The mind of Matt Scudder It s too sensationalistic, far fetched and grisly for my taste


  7. Brandon Brandon says:

    When a married couple is found brutally murdered in their own home, the two scum bags thought responsible are found dead in their own apartment of an apparent murder suicide While the NYPD feels confident in closing the case, the niece of the deceased does not She mentions this in passing to TJ who in turn brings it to Scudder s attention and it isn t long before the three are sitting down in a diner trading theories While there s a definite lack of proof, Scudder feels her concerns are valid When a married couple is found brutally murdered in their own home, the two scum bags thought responsible are found dead in their own apartment of an apparent murder suicide While the NYPD feels confident in closing the case, the niece of the deceased does not She mentions this in passing to TJ who in turn brings it to Scudder s attention and it isn t long before the three are sitting down in a diner trading theories While there s a definite lack of proof, Scudder feels her concerns are valid enough to warrant turning over a few rocks.As the investigation intensifies, Scudder comes to believe a third man was involved Can Scudder and TJ track down this mystery man and stop him from killing again The preceding novel Everybody Dies was a landmark instalment in Block s tremendous Scudder series Both the character development and the brutality of the action will stick with me for years I m not sure if I was suffering from some sort of Scudder hangover but Hope to Die, while an intricately plotted and intriguing mystery, didn t feel as memorable.I ve come to love Matt s career criminal best friend Mick Ballou almost as much as Scudder himself and while he was central to Everybody Dies, he was seemingly relegated to a background character in Hope to Die I can hardly blame Block for that as I wouldn t want Mick shoehorned into a story if Block felt he wasn t needed as much, but I sure as hell missed him.I also didn t care too much for the chapters written from the perspective of the killer While I noted above that I loved the growth of Scudder s supporting cast in Everybody Dies, the switching of narratives rarely sit well with me That being said, it certainly helped to establish that the man Scudder was hunting was mentally unhinged Unfortunately, it would often take me out of the story.I only have TWO Scudder novels remaining as well as a short story collection and I m pretty bummed about it One is a sequel All The Flowers Are Dying and one is a flashback story A Drop of the Hard Stuff and while I m looking forward to reading them, I m not looking forward to running out of new Scudder material Say it ain t so Also posted Every Read Thing


  8. Ian Ian says:

    The Matt Scudder series moves into the 21st century with this 2001 novel He s gradually becomerespectable as the series has progressed but even so the opening of this novel took me aback, as Scudder and Elaine attend a dinner for patrons of a Mostly Mozart festival at the Lincoln Center, for which honour they have paid 2500 It s a far cry from 70s Scudder, for whom attending a prize fight would have been the height of culture He hasn t entirely left his old self behind though He sti The Matt Scudder series moves into the 21st century with this 2001 novel He s gradually becomerespectable as the series has progressed but even so the opening of this novel took me aback, as Scudder and Elaine attend a dinner for patrons of a Mostly Mozart festival at the Lincoln Center, for which honour they have paid 2500 It s a far cry from 70s Scudder, for whom attending a prize fight would have been the height of culture He hasn t entirely left his old self behind though He still likes to watch the boxing, still hangs around with Mick Ballou, and after the events of the last book he is back to being an unlicensed PI Scudder s latest case begins when a couple who attended the same patron s dinner are brutally murdered on their return home.This is an unusual Scudder novel in a couple of aspects One is that part of the story is told from the perspective of the killer, the other is something I can t mention without including spoilers I did think that, in this book, the descriptions of the murders included a degree of detail that I m not convinced was necessary I imagine it was included to direct the reader s emotions, and I realise there s a degree of foolishness in choosing to read a crime novel and then complaining that it includes descriptions of crimes.Setting those reservations aside, I personally found this a tense and compelling read The second half simply demanded my attention Another solid entry in the series


  9. Aditya Aditya says:

    A robbery turns into a brutal home invasion Both the suspects are found dead in an open and shut suicide murder case except Scudder believes there was a third man involved The biggest change here is every now and then the perspective changes from Scudder to the killer From the reviews I perused on GR, most fans were not enthused by the decision It is always jarring when a long running series suddenly changes POV but beyond the initial shock, it worked for me.This series has always been happy A robbery turns into a brutal home invasion Both the suspects are found dead in an open and shut suicide murder case except Scudder believes there was a third man involved The biggest change here is every now and then the perspective changes from Scudder to the killer From the reviews I perused on GR, most fans were not enthused by the decision It is always jarring when a long running series suddenly changes POV but beyond the initial shock, it worked for me.This series has always been happy to reinvent itself From novella to novels, gritty mysteries to action thrillers, pre Mick Ballou to post Mick Ballou when Scudder getstrigger happy I thought most of those changes impacted the series muchsignificantly than the change in POV The former occasionally changed the type of stories that were being told about Scudder while Hope to Die only changes the storytelling technique Andcrucially Block is brilliant at putting us into the head of a deranged sadist I have seen him do the same in a couple of his short stories and he replicates it here The killer initially appears as an egotistical narcissist albeit a competent one As the narrative progresses, Block shows us how his psyche unravels and he becomesunhinged.Scudder as a character has not always stayed consistent from one book to the next specially when it came to his views on murder and vigilantism But in spite of that he had always remained an interesting character, because Block creates such a lived in world for him His interactions with a variety of supporting characters, both regulars and new ones feel authentic in ways that is not always obvious in crime fiction The biggest effect being plotlines that scream filler in lesser books actually help to enrich the characters here For example Scudder s adult sons make their first appearance in the series and their scenes are excellent though they have no bearing over the crime story I think Block realized that he was almost done with series 2books to go and he dropped some parallels to the way Scudder started off Scudder starts tithing again and gets back to being an unlicensed PI, similar to the first few books Like the cyclicity of the whole thing.The only minor problem here is the relative open ended conclusion I am not a fan of to be continued storylines However it answered the relevant mysteries that were set up in the book while keeping the coast clear for a direct sequel The motivation behind the crime is also absurdly far fetched It might he considered a flaw by some but my take is different It is an intentional plotting decision by Block to show how deluded the killer is.The usual highpoints are present The mystery is good and Block s dialogue crackles with a dry wit, without getting so cute that it breaks immersion or draws attention to itself If I am asked to name my top ten crime books, Block s works would not even enter the discussion But Block himself will always find a place in my list of top ten crime authors This book perfectly demonstrates why Block might not ever be brilliant but he is consistently great Nothing ground breaking here but just a consummate professional dazzling the readers with virtuosity and versatility Rating 4 5


  10. Mike French Mike French says:

    This my fifth book of the seventeen book Mathew Scudder series I am looking forward to reading the rest of this very enjoyable and entertaining series To me Lawrence Block is one the greatest writers of crime fiction that I have read


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Hope to Die ➹ Hope to Die Free ➯ Author Lawrence Block – Larringtonlifecoaching.co.uk The city caught its collective breath when upscale couple Byrne and Susan Hollander were slaughtered in a brutal home invasion Now, a few days later, the killers themselves have turned up dead behind The city caught its collective breath when upscale couple Byrne and Susan Hollander were slaughtered in a brutal home invasion Now, a few days later, the killers themselves have turned up dead behind the locked door of a Brooklyn hellhole one apparently slain by his partner in crime who then took his own lifeThere s something drawing Matthew Scudder to this case that the cops have quickly and eagerly closed a nagging suspicion that a third man is Hope to PDF/EPUB or involved, a cold, diabolical puppet master who manipulates his two accomplices, then cuts their strings when he s done with them No one but Scudder even suspects he exists And his worst fear is that the guy is just getting started.