The Smack: A Novel

The Smack: A Novel

by Richard Lange


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"That rare thriller that will jack your pulse even as it breaks your heart."—Adam Sternbergh, author of Shovel Ready

Rowan Petty is a conman down on his luck. He's flat broke, living out of cheap hotels, and wondering how it all went wrong. His car quits on him in Reno, and he takes a job there on the bottom rung of a lousy phone scam. When he's not swindling lonely widows, he tries to turn nickels into dimes at the poker table. One snowy night, he crosses paths with a sweet-talking hooker who's tired of the streets, and sparks fly.

When an old friend of his turns up spreading a rumor about two million dollars in army money smuggled out of Afghanistan and stashed in an apartment in Los Angeles, it seems like a chance at the score of a lifetime. So Petty and the hooker head south, and straight into trouble. A wounded vet, a washed-up actor, and Petty's estranged daughter are all players in the dangerous game they find themselves caught up in. For the winner: a fortune. For the loser: a bullet to the head.

Propulsive, suspenseful, and written with a searing lyricism, The Smack shows once again that "Lange is a writer firing on all cylinders who belongs in the top tier of novelists working today" (Omaha World-Herald).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316327619
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 11/13/2018
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 633,423
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Richard Lange is the author of the story collections Dead Boys and Sweet Nothing and the novels This Wicked World and Angel Baby. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, the International Association of Crime Writers' Hammett Prize, and the Rosenthal Family Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Los Angeles.

What People are Saying About This

author of The Marauders Tom Cooper

"The Smack just might be Mr. Lange's best yet, and that's saying something. His Los Angeles tableau of concrete and graffiti and neon is as sharp as razor wire. The characters are authentic down to the bone, the dialogue pitch-perfect believable, the desperation palpable, the situation urgent, the story riveting. Simply put, The Smack wallops you upside the head with its bad-ass-ness."

author of To Live and Die in L.A. and The Sentinel - Gerald Petievich

"The Smack is much more than a crime novel. It is a novel about life itself. The secret to great writing isn't just to observe. It's to create a world that readers understand at least as well as they do their own. Richard Lange has accomplished this, and more. His sensitivity and pacing are reminiscent of Raymond Carver, Charles Willeford, and Jim Thompson."

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The Smack: A Novel 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Richard Lange is one of the best crime writers in the business. Think of Don Winslow and Michael Connelly; then add Mr. Lange to the list. I just had the great privilege of reading an early copy of his newest effort, The Smack. I loved it. That is all that I can say. And that is all that needs to be said. Oh, one more thing; the book is available on July 18th. Do yourself a solid and buy it now so that you can start it the day it is available. Rowan Petty is a con man looking for a big score. He needs money like a junky needs smack. And Petty will do just about anything to secure his future. In the way are gangsters, thieves, others wiling to kill to get their hands on more money than they have ever seen. If you have ever had thoughts about pulling a con job read The Smack. Richard Lange has written a wonderful book and that is no con job
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just not my type of book