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The Sacred Art of Stealing (Angelique De Xavier #2)

4.26 of 5 stars 4.26  ·  rating details  ·  2,220 ratings  ·  92 reviews
He is an art thief; she is a connoisseur of crooks. Her job is to hunt him to extinction; his is to avoid being caught. He also has a secret agenda more valuable than anything he might steal. What he can't afford is to let her get too close: he could could end up in jail or, more scary, in love.
Published October 3rd 2002 by Abacus (first published 2002)
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Mar 11, 2009 Rachel rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Rachel by: Paul Reynolds
Shelves: fiction
Oh, this was great! Paul recommended it, but warned that many of the Scottish cultural references would go over my head. Sure enough, I think I missed about half of it (resulting in a late-night karate lecture on the Celtics vs. Rangers issues) but I really loved the book anyway, and I think Zal is now my favorite fictional character. I can't wait to read the upcoming sequel! (Okay, it's out in the UK, but I can't seem to get my hands on a copy.)

This is a sequel to _A Big Boy Did it and Ran Away
Sep 25, 2011 Richard rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Richard by: Trevor
Shelves: fiction, adventure
This is, loosely, a follow-on from A Big Boy Did It and Ran Away. Same locale, and the focus here in on the wonderfully named Angelique de Xavia, who played a large part in the previous book.

Do you need to have read Big Boy to get everything here? No, you'd be able to piece together the necessary inferences about what happened, but it would somewhat spoil things should you then want to go back and read the prequel.

Anyway, what I wrote in my review of that book still stands.
Quite the high adventu
Luís Miguel
Recomendado pelo Goodreads para uma leitura light - mas não tão lite - propus-me a descobrir este autor escocês. The Art of Stealing é o segundo livro com a protagonista Angelique De Xavia, detective e fã do Rangers de Glasgow. Após os eventos do primeiro livro, aqui sumariamente descritos, Angelique vê-se envolvida no assalto a um banco, onde se apaixona pelo líder da quadrilha. Com mais humor e diversas referências culturais que acção, os inevitáveis contorcionismos vão ocorrendo e as 400 pági ...more
Dec 08, 2007 Trevor rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people with a sense of humour
Shelves: humour, mystery
Be warned, this book contains language and humour. This is a continuation of A Big Boy Did it and Ran Away - if Brookmyre does one thing well, he does do a good title. If you are thinking of reading this it might be a good idea to read that one first - although this is by far the better of the two books.

This novel is probably my favourite of all of his books - but only just and they are mostly all so much fun and such page turners that it is hard to really pick between them.

Another warning is th
Inizio un po' spesso, si riprende nella parte centrale dove i 2 protagonisti, attratti dai mondi diversi e contrastanti, si conoscono e la descrizione dell'educazione del ladro (non sono io il cattivo solo perché porto le armi) trattata come una forma di "interrogatorio" da Angelique, che è lo stesso dell'inizio di ogni storia. Tanti mondi a confronto tra loro, il mondo della polizia con i suoi metodi convenzionali che non accettano altre opzioni di quelle previste dai vari manuali, quello del l ...more
для брукмайра у мене небагато слів, крім слів захвату.
можна було, в принципі, припустити, що людина, яка любить робертсона девіса до того рівня, щоб давати своїм персонажам його імена на постійній основі, радше має виявитися хороша, ніж ні. але що аж так – це було доволі несподівано.
брукмайр бере поліцейський процедурал із пограбуванням банку (і, повірте, це може бути найпрекрасніше пограбування банку, на яке ви будь-коли натрапите) і робить із нього дивовижно дотепний, іронічний і зворушливий р
Clever, clever book. (well I susppose I mean clever clever author). I love Christopher Brookmyre and have been listening to a few oh his superb narratives as audiobooks. (Totally recommend that as well - listening to these words in a right Scottish accent makes the words even funnier!).

The language is flawless, funny, subtle, to the point, complex, rude, considered and utterly brilliant.

I expect that Mr Brookmyre will not be to everyone's taste - and seriously, it always takes a while to "get in
Gail Williams
The Sacred Art of Stealing the Readers Heart

I can’t even remember why I picked this book up, but from the moment I did, I didn’t want to put it down. It doesn’t start when you’d expect and it keeps the reader on a rollercoaster all the way through. The idea of the original bank heist was sheer brilliance, even made me finish reading “Waiting for Godot”, yes reading, I’ve never seen it, though I would like to. This was the first Brookmyre I ever read, and so didn’t have the background on Angeliqu
My only regret is that I didn't realise that this was the second book, and by the time I knew it was too late, I was hooked. Brookmyre is very good at creating plots with more twists and turns in them than a road in the alps.
The characters are great too, some you can love and others you can hate, cheering loudly when they get what you think they deserve.
The whole bank job is brilliant and had me laughing out loud, can't wait for the next.
Rhona Arthur
He just never disappoints
Richard Beasley
I was introduced to this by some relations. "Read the first few pages" they said, "you'll be hooked"
Totally correct. The rant is side split tingly funny (if quite rude) and the book just gets better and better.

If feeling depressed or trapped in job and just want some raucous comedy crime, interspersed with many wicked asides this will lift your spirits. I cannot recommend this highly enough (unless you are upset by some sexual frankness)

Have now read all the books from start up to Pandemonium. A
Hilarious - another Angelique episode that just entertains from page one!
I really enjoyed this book. It was light but not shallow, funny, engaging and intelligent. Brookmyre has mixed the genres of crime, thriller, romance and satire and added a large dollop of humour to make a great read. Just don't be put off by the prologue which is written in a completely different style to the rest of the book.

A daring and bizarrely surealist daylight bank robbery takes place in Glasgow. Enter Angelique de Xavia, terrorist busting cop who happens to be turning 30; Zal Innez, hig
If you want to avoid raw sexual bluntness and crude language, then avoid this book. The very first sentence will insult your sensibilities. Still, Harry’s essay on sexual transactions, in the first chapters is incontrovertible! ;)

Stuart and Angelique’s relationship was cleverly unveiled in small moments at a time. (view spoiler)
The Sacred Art of Stealing = (Arty clowns + Incompetent gangsters) x (Arty clowns + Gullible Glasca polis)

Quite a few people recommended this Brookmyre to me, stating it was their favourite, so it had a lot to live up to. It wasn't anything better than other Brookmyre books, but it's still a Brookmyre book, which means it's still really bloody good.

Clowns robbing a bank? The fact that this clown robbery lasts for the first half of the book? Awesome. And then the things I don't want to spoil that
Meridiano Zero
D, Repubblica delle Donne
20 Ottobre 07

Tutti i trucchi del noir

L’erede di Nick Hornby e Irvine Welsh, mostri sacri della new wave letteraria anglo-scozzese, potrebbe essere Christopher Brookmyre, classe ’68, di Glasgow, critico cinematografico, ex cantante rock, cronista sportivo, da anni autore di noir che hanno per protagonista il giornalista d’assalto Jack Parlabane, a caccia di notizie che Brookmyre scaglia come bombe contro il governo, il sistema sanitario e dell’informazione.
In quest’ultimo
3.5 stars. Angelique de Xavier, the petite, erudite and lethal member of the Glasgow police who featured in Brookmyre’s novel A Big Boy Did it and Ran Away, is having a bad day even before she is taken hostage by a bank robber. The robber turns out to have a heart of gold and Angelique spends the rest of the book alternately falling in love with him and figuring out how to catch him in the act of his forthcoming heist.

The robber is involved in scams within scams, and it’s all pretty cleverly pla
9/7/12: Re-read this book for the first time in a few years because I saw it in the op shop. It's possibly even more brilliant than I remember. Obvs Brookmyre doesn't want to let you think he might be getting soft by writing about very polite, non-violent, art-school bank robbers, so the book starts with an extended meditation on prostitution, gang enforcement and shithole Mexican industrial towns, quickly followed by a super-gory crime scene before moving on to the main attraction - the bank ro ...more
The press tends to talk about bankrobberies as daring, ingenious or audacious, never as "Dadaist" even the ones who know what "Dadaist" means. But how else does one explain choreographed dancing gunmen in Buchanan Street, or the surreal methods they use to stay one step ahead of the cops?
Angelique de Xavia is no art critic, but she is a connoisseur of crooks, and she's sure that this heist isn't the work of the usual sawn-offs-and black-tights criminal. It's her job to hunt this unique species o
Immaginatevi questo libro come una tavola imbandita di tutti i piatti che preferite, già ve li state gustando con gli occhi, ma man mano che li assaggiate, vi accorgete che manca un ingrediente fondamentale e che senza quello ogni piatto rimane sì mangiabile, ma nulla di più. Ecco, questa è l'impressione che mi ha lasciato la lettura del libro di Brookmyre; gli elementi per una buona storia ci sono tutti (trama, intreccio, personaggi, dialoghi), ma è come se mancasse quel "qualcosa" che poteva c ...more
A fun, intricate, well-written book that put me in mind (sort of) of Donald Westlake's "The Hot Rock," as in colorful-band-of-characters-stealing-things in a clever / humorous kind of way. This unabridged recording is expertly read by Lesley Mackie and Terry Wale - I give their names so as to give credit where credit is due - and they perfectly bring Christopher Bookmyre's terrific novel to life. As with the other books that I've read (actually, listened to) by this author, the book is set, most ...more
The last copy of this winked at me in Fopp, and for 2 i wasn't going to let it be left on the shelf like an Old Maid.

Brookmyre is on form in this book, the writing fizzes along, with his usual acerbic one liners and dissections of modern life.

de Xavia is a strong female lead, without appearing like a superhero: she's flawed and clearly has self doubts at the forefront of her mind.

The plot twists and turns like a python on coals, pulling you along,and making for a very quick read. Like most Brro
A bit of a page- turner once you get into the story, with an unexpected and funnily written story that just wants you to keep on reading. A good, light reading that will appeal to all those into detective stories.
Georgia Darcie
This is quite possibly my favourite book. I adore Brookmyre's style of writing in all of his books, but the story in this one clinches it.
It takes the time to relate the events to wider culture, and to explain characters and despite this the story progresses rapidly and excitingly.
The art and criminal scenes intertwine beautifully together making this a beautiful book, which flows with hard, harsh, realistic cultural undertones throughout.
I love Zal's character best of all, which is exactly th
I loved this book. It starts out a bit like Lock Stock or Snatch. And it has some fabulous twists which, if you've been paying attention, you'll know usually make a book for me.
What a great book. The writing is hilarious, though hard to read for a non-native. The plot is funny and has well built. Though in the middle they talk a bit too much, I like the characters. Don't get turned away by the brutality first chapter - when I started the it, I initially though I had bought the wrong book. It is is no way an indicator for the rest of the book. I love the One Step Beyond Clown scene!
Daniel Llewellyn
The bank robbery itself is the most extra-ordinary piece of writing. You can probably stop reading once its over though.
The Sacred Art of Stealing is a real find. It was recommended to me by a backgammon buddy. Everything about this book is wonderful. The pacing is at times a little off. But everything ties together with no waste. It is the magician’s crime novel. And I don’t like crime novels.

The language is sometimes difficult for an American, as it is written with local Scott slang. But it was well worth reading through that. Everything about this book didn’t feel American. I truly liked it. Yes, it is not one
Prerna Kashyap
Honesty is a virtue. Deceit is a talent. Theft is an art form.
Consider me hooked!
Feb 25, 2014 Steve rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
Can't argue with Brookmyre - he has it all. Comedy, twisted plot, loveable characters (and that's just the bad guys!) and obscure pop culture references (robbers dressed as Zal Clemiston from SAHB anyone??). This one was a bit of a slow burner, but still solidified Brookmyre's position as one of my favourite current authors.
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Christopher Brookmyre is a Scottish novelist whose novels mix politics, social comment and action with a strong narrative. He has been referred to as a Tartan Noir author. His debut novel was Quite Ugly One Morning, and subsequent works have included One Fine Day in the Middle of the Night, which he said "was just the sort of book he needed to write before he turned 30", and All Fun and Games unti ...more
More about Christopher Brookmyre...

Other Books in the Series

Angelique De Xavier (3 books)
  • A Big Boy Did It and Ran Away
  • A Snowball in Hell
Quite Ugly One Morning (Jack Parlabane, #1) A Big Boy Did It and Ran Away One Fine Day in the Middle of the Night All Fun and Games Until Somebody Loses an Eye Boiling a Frog

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