Kiss Her Goodbye (Hard Case Crime #8)
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Kiss Her Goodbye (Hard Case Crime #8)

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  242 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Joe Hope is a loan shark's enforcer. When his wife and young daughter die, he'll stop at nothing to bring down the man responsible.
Mass Market Paperback, 223 pages
Published March 6th 2005 by Hard Case Crime
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Dan Schwent
Joe Hope is the muscle for an Edinburgh loan shark. When his daughter dies, an apparent suicide, he's heartbroken and wants revenge for whomever is responsible. He flies up to Orkney, only to find himself wanted by the police. A passage in Gemma's journal seems to indicate Joe raped her and to top it off, Joe's wife Ruth's body was found in the trunk of his car at the airport. Joe spends the rest of the novel running from the cops while trying to figure out what the hell is going on and get reve...more
I didn't think I would ever say this about a Hard Case Crime book, but this cover does not do the book justice. It's a fun cover, don't get me wrong. And it actually represents a moment in the book. However, in my opinion, it misrepresents the tone of the book completely.

Perhaps it is in the spirit of the vintage paperbacks that Hard Case emulates to sell the sizzle rather than the steak (can you get more sizzle in hard-boiled terms than a woman wielding a bat).

The reason I go on about the cover...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jason Speck
Joe Hope is a 'hard man': as an enforcer for his loan-shark best friend, he doesn't do the killing but he's no stranger to inflicting pain. It's not a great life but it gets him through. He takes what little solace his life possesses in the arms of Tina, a prostitute with whom he never has sex out of loyalty to an alcoholic wife who hates him deeply.

Yet life only has more pain for Joe. First his daughter, his only other bright spot, commits suicide. Then his wife is found dead in the trunk of hi...more
Greg of A2
The intelligent thug. One of crime fiction's favorite characters. Joe Hope is just such a character. He did some college. He got a girl pregnant. Dropped out of college and took an enforcer job with a loan shark buddy. At the heart of this story is family tragedy (suicide and murder). The book feels a bit different than previous Hard Case Crime novels partly because it geographically takes place in the UK which provides the reader with some of those fun British words that we Americans find amusi...more
This was a little less formulaic in parts than other books of this imprint. Still have the anti-hero, but this was more of a whodunit, than a straight crime/noir novel. After a while, I stopped caring about finding out who had actually dunit. Still, an ok mystery ride. One method of the genre is beginning to wear thin-- the villain's exposition. It comes off as lazy. You're already writing in third person omniscient, why do you need the villain to explain everything at the end through dialogue?...more
Keith Nixon
Joe Hope sorts problems out, usually by the application of violence with a baseball bat, on behalf of his loan shark boss, Cooper. But for once it’s Joe that has the problem, first his daughter, Gemma, commits suicide. Joe immediately flies to the Orkneys where she’s been living at a writer’s retreat with a relative, Adam. But as soon as he arrives Joe is arrested. The accusation? The murder of his wife, battered to death with Joe’s work tool.

But, there are further complications, Gemma kept a di...more
Michael Mallory
Allan Guthrie has author blurbs to die for on the back cover and inside. Maybe his other books have warranted those, but "Kiss Her Goodbye" does not. On the surface, the book is written in Brit-speak, which takes a bit of getting used to for us Yanks. But that's not really the problem: the problem is that its story about a bad guy who's framed for the murder of his wife has only a short-story's worth of actual plot. The other 200 pages are filled up with sometimes contradictory inner narrative a...more
Connie Haag
As a reviewer, once in a while I dream at night that I am on the witness stand and somebody is asking 'Are you NOW or have you ever BEEN a member of the trashing-second-novels club!?'


It's true, many writers knock it out of the ballpark on their second try, and as a result everyone's patience is sorely tested. To avoid all this, Guthrie was judicious enough to make KISS HER GOODBYE yet another altogether extraordinary, lullaby-free Noir Classic. Again the total absence of all the word 'mercy...more
If you can get thru the first half-dozen chapters (or so) of the author calling every other character and/or street character the same name (starts with T, has a W, and ends with T) then you'll be pleasantly surprised with the double murder mystery that develops over the course of the rest of KISS HER GOODBYE, a double-dose of tough love for the main character, a small-town Scottish mob enforcer ironically named Joe Hope.

The lowdown: after spending a night away from his estranged wife, Hope is...more
Joe Hope is an enforcer for his friend Cooper who is a loan shark. Joe is not afraid of violence, but he's always drawn the line at killing someone. Then his daughter, who had suddenly moved from Edinburgh to Orkney to live with a distant relative, commits suicide and Joe loses his reason. Then he's accused of a murder, and life really takes a turn. Can Joe rely on his friend, or is his only hope for salvation a hooker with a heart of gold and a well-used baseball bat?

Joe Hope could have been a...more
this is another in the Hard Case Crime (HCC) series. (hopefully i won't say this in my remaining 77 reviews in the series, but i might.) this one has a Scottish hardboiled/noir/mystery thriller thing going for it. i read it with a Scottish accent and a pint in me hand, of course. it was brilliant! also picked up some new Scottish slang curse words which will definitely come in handy with all the pitas in my life. LOL

this was not as good as HCC#1 but better than hammett's 'maltese falcon.' OMG! (...more
James Powell
While I enjoyed the mystery of this crime thriller, the main character was just too much of an ass for me to care. I needed to see less of the thug and more of the concerned parent if I were to buy the whole premise. By the time I learned enough about him to actually begin empathizing with him, it was too late...I just didn't care much for any of these bad people, and I finished the book simply to see how the mystery was solved.
I didn't think much of Guthrie's Hard Man - which I read about a month ago - so I was pleasantly surprised with Kiss Her Goodbye.

There's never a question of who the baddie is in this title, but it isn't really about that.

Joe Cooper is the muscle for a local loan shark and when his daughter is discovered dead from an apparent suicide his whole world starts collapsing.

What's impressive about Guthrie's writing are the characters. They're still modeled on classic noir - tough guys, sex workers, et...more
David Cain
Decent story. Quick, pulpy, and full of action. Takes place in Scotland but - aside from a few stray details - does not establish a strong sense of place. True to the spirit of the Hard Case Crime series.
Alan Pottinger
Not my normal reading genre - gritty and violent but I must admit although it dragged a bit the last 40 pages had me gripped!
It is a tribute to the quality and strength of Allan Guthrie's writing that despite being wholly populated with nasty characters - some more so than others - it is impossible to stop reading, all the way to the end. The writing I really liked, the story, not so much, hence the three not four stars. Perhaps it would be more generous to rate it the other way round ...
This novel is fairly juvenile, but certain parts, including the tricky plan to capture the villains in the end, are entertaining. And the main character is a rather surprising sort of person. We start off with him hitting someone with a baseball bat for money, and end up thinking he's a fairly nice guy who actually seems largely against violence. Oddball.
Joe Hope is an enforcer for an Edinburgh loan shark. He has received news that his daughter ha commited suicide. Within a day, he finds out that his wife has been murdered, and he is arrested and charged with the crime. Who did it? Why? Read the book and find out. These are not nice people, but they are well-portrayed. A good not of hard-boiled fiction.
Well-paced plot and strong characters. I guessed part of the mystery before the main character, but given what kind of person he is, it fits the story. My view of the characters changed during the novel, sometimes turning 180 degrees. A bit of British slang will throw me from time to time, but this is just a great read. Highly recommended.
Chris Rhatigan
A freakin master class in noir writing. Full review in the next issue of All Due Respect.
Elijah Kinch Spector
One of the better modern efforts from Hard Case. I guessed the big reveal fairly early on, but that never really bothers me. Interesting to see such a story in a different setting (Scotland).
Derek Schneider
What I liked most about this book was the dialog. It was a very smart crime novel with some intense and often hilarious interaction between the characters. A cool story, good read.
Dan Beaver
Pacing was good and the characters were complex enough to make them real. The "twist" was readily identifiable, however, and Guthrie cld have spent a little more energy working on motive.
I wasn't sure that I would enjoy this book but I'm happy to report that I did. I have never read anything by this author previously and would definately like to read more by him.
Very tough crime noir novel from the Hard Case Crime series. Loses its way a bit toward the end, but pretty interesting overall.
taut writing, real characters and gritty patois - another unputdownable read from Guthrie
Bad guy framed for murder searching for justice.
Larry Webber
an interesting setting
It started out slowly, but picked up midway through. The Scottish setting (and slang) was a nice change of pace for the Hard Case Crime line up.
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