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The Devil's Company (Benjamin Weaver #3)

3.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,393 Ratings  ·  254 Reviews
BONUS: This edition contains a The Devil's Company discussion guide.

From the acclaimed and bestselling author ofThe Whiskey RebelsandA Conspiracy of Papercomes a stunning new thriller set in the splendor and squalor of eighteenth-century London.

The year is 1722. Ruffian for hire and master of disguise Benjamin Weaver finds himself pitted against a mysterious mastermind who
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Published July 7th 2009 by Random House (first published July 1st 2007)
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Peter Clothier
Apr 23, 2013 Peter Clothier rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a big fan of Benjamin Weaver, the Jewish prize-figher turned "thief taker," who is the hero of David Liss's The Devil's Company, the third in the series of crime novels set in 18th century London. (The other two are The Whiskey Rebels and A Conspiracy of Paper.) Liss writes as Weaver, in the first person, in a pitch-perfect and convincing blend of contemporaneous slang and syntax with readable modern English. The author has a remarkable ability to evoke the stinking, muddy streets of a pre-s ...more
Ele Munjeli
Oct 17, 2009 Ele Munjeli rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Set in London in the year 1722, the scenery might be the point of the novel; yet, David Liss manages to create memorable and individual characters that actually carry the day. Our hero, a retired boxer of Portugese-Jewish ancestry, is also a master of disguise and a wry wit. His sidekick is a lounge lizard Lothario of a surgeon, always ready for another glass of wine. The dialogs in the story were perhaps a strong point: the exchanges were natural, but sharp and informative. There is a strong se ...more
Jul 07, 2009 Joe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One day while on vacation, I stepped into a local bookstore looking for a bit of literary adventure. I decided I wanted to read some fiction, instead of the usual history I tend to gravitate to. I randomly pulled off the shelf a book called the “Coffee Trader” by David Liss, not knowing a thing about the book or the author. The literary fates smiled upon me that day. I was amazed that a book set in 16th century Amsterdam could be so full on intrigue, suspense and absolutely thrilling to read. Af ...more
Oct 26, 2010 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I don't know if there's a better historical mystery-thriller writer out there than David Liss. Following his impressive, "The Whiskey Rebels," Liss goes back to his continuing 18th century London character, Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish pugilist turned private detective.

This time, bad guys in the form of mysterious monied gentlemen, have Weaver over a barrel. If Weaver doesn't do their bidding, debts will be called in against his uncle, his best friend and a respected neighbor, and in those days, t
Rebecca Huston
If your taste runs to historical mystery/thriller novels, have I got a doozy for you today. Another novel in the ongoing series about Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish man in 18th century England, who happens to be a theif-taker among other things, this one explores international trade, and a deal that has gone very very badly. Weaver has to penetrate the secretive workings of the East India Company -- a company that doesn't like anyone poking into their affairs, and on the personal side of his life, st ...more
Natacha Martins
Aug 04, 2015 Natacha Martins rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Os livros do David Liss foram dos primeiros, da então nova editora Saída Emergência, a captar a minha atenção. A Saída de Emergência na altura veio trazer uma lufada de ar fresco ao mundo editorial, com as capas diferentes de todas as que até aí existiam, autores desconhecidos (muitos deles portugueses) e mais direccionada para a literatura Fantástica e o Romance Histórico, onde se encaixavam os do David Liss - "A Conspiração de Papel", "O Mercador Português" e "O Grande Conspirador". A verdade ...more
Classifying Liss' books as historical fiction is a bit misleading: Liss' mysteries are ripped from the headlines of the 17th and 18th century, but those headlines would be disturbingly familiar to anyone who picked up a newspaper today.

His latest revolves around a company too big to fail, the Honorable East India Company, and brings back thieftaker and former pugilist Benjamin Weaver to untangle a mystery involving blackmail, murder, spying and international business intrigue.

This tale is fast-
Richard Reviles Censorship Always in All Ways
Seriously ugly jacket.

Book is, well, book is...really well plotted, filled with characters whose ideas and motivations I get and even support, and told in a very engaging way.

Liss's trademark business angle is very much in evidence in this book. It's set partially within the confines of the East India Company, and quite a lot of the action takes place around the various business concerns of the characters; all handled in such a way as to make it clear that this story arises from those concerns,
Dec 11, 2009 D.w. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed

Having got this book to review, I had to acquire the previous two books as this is the third and become acquainted with our hero... There is a trend with our hero to not have his life in his own hands. Here more than any other time we see blackmail at the root of his problems. We also see the writer use a device, now all too obvious of not beginning his story at the beginning. In each instance we have a chapter or more where we have to delve back in time by some days or weeks to find where the s
Jun 21, 2009 Jeremy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I don't usually read books like this. I studied English in college, and consider myself a connoisseur of literature - and certainly above reading contemporary suspense novels.

Mr. Liss's book reminded me that not all books have to be literary masterpieces in order to be worth reading. Benjamin Weaver is an entertaining character - think 18th century Jack Bauer (perhaps I am revealing that my tastes are not as highbrow as I pretend... ). He is able to get himself into and out of any number of stic
Sep 12, 2011 Anachronist rated it liked it
What I liked:

The plot was as action-packed and full of twists and turns, as I like. I didn’t have one minute of boredom while reading this one.

Vivid period detail is rendered so it can actually make you interested in history, even if you didn’t like the subject or the era before. This time Mr. Liss provides some interesting glimpses into the Rules of the Fleet – a law-free area around Fleet Prisons where debtors could live free from arrest and clandestine marriages took place without banns or li
Aug 17, 2009 Aarti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed David Liss's previous books featuring Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish ex-boxer making his way as a detective in London. (And yes, I mention the religion for a reason. Judaism is part of all Liss's novels historical novels, and while it is never at the forefront of the plot, it is definitely a key component of the background.) I admit I don't remember the first two very well at all- I read them some years ago- but I do remember liking them. So I was really excited to get this book ...more
Joel Margolese
Another good, but not great book from David Liss. For me, his high point was the Whisky Rebellion. In this book, set in England in 1727 (I believe) Benjamin Weaver returns and get embroiled in an intriguing mystery. The plot is very good, the characters enjoyable and the most of the settings are quite vivid and plausible. (I have no idea if he's got his history right or if his descriptions of how people lived & dressed are correct, but they feel like they are right, so I enjoy that part of t ...more
Jun 05, 2009 William rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've read all of David Liss's published books. They are among the most enjoyable books I’ve read in my 54 years on the planet. Just finished The Devil's Company and enjoyed this story as much as his other books. From the whirlwind of the early chapters to the final, satisfying conclusion as the hero, Benjamin Weaver, thwarts the plans and machinations of the evildoers(I will say no more), The Devil's Company is a book that I will savor the memory of reading. I can say that about only a few other ...more
Jun 16, 2009 Marsha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm so happy to have had the chance to preview the Devil's Company! David Liss seems to get better with each new book. In the Devil's Company, Benjamin Weaver returns for more puzzling adventures. While Weaver is forced to act as another's puppet, he must watch his friends and family struggle at the hands of the puppeteer. Along the way, he works to unravel the web that has snared them all. All of this takes place amid 18th-century corporate/government tug of war. This is most definitely a page ...more
Jeffrey Rasley
Dec 08, 2014 Jeffrey Rasley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's well written and delightfully narrated as an audiobook. The protagonist Benjamin Weaver is a surprising, confusingly odd, but interesting mix of characteristics. He is self-righteously saintly in his commitment to his code of honor. But, he is quite willing to deceive and physically thrash those who oppose him. He thirsts for revenge against those who wrong him. He lies as easily and as often as he tells the truth. His ends justify his means. Yet, he insists that he is deeply concerned abou ...more
Always enjoy Liss's novels, and this one was no exception, making excellent use of the settings and issues of historical times, sometimes in contrast with and sometimes as analogues to, our own. The governmental regulation vs. corporate free market subtheme, for example, was, I thought, well done. However, I thought this book a little lacking in emotional depth at times, particularly in the case of certain character deaths (as at least one other reviewer noted). Still, quite worth the read.
Jun 25, 2010 Mommalibrarian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book sets an incredibly complex set of characters and plots in squalid 18th century London. All the twists are not resolved until the very last page. There are several 'issues' but they are totally integrated into the story; no idle philosophizing. Is better to favor native production or enjoy cheap imports. Is there real danger to the British government as the multinational, East India Company grows more ever more powerful? Who can be trusted? How could these people drink so much?
May 12, 2015 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started this book before I realized it was the third in a series. But if you're in the same situation you'll have no problems. It's a high intrigue historical novel based in London in the mid-1700s, focusing on the ultra-powerful East India Company. In the course of being forced to "assist" a mysterious client, private detective (of sorts) Benjamin Weaver dealt with a wealth of interesting characters and lead a story full of hidden agendas, double crossings, and complicated machinations. There ...more
This is the second of David Liss' books that I've read and they were both exceptional. Benjamin Weaver is a "thief catcher" in 18th century London. When he is contacted by a mysterious man who seems to know everything about Weaver, even private details, and who uses this information to compel Weaver to infiltrate the British East India Company headquarters, Weaver finds himself enmeshed in intrigue and danger. While Liss always includes interesting characters and complex plots, it is the histori ...more
Valerie Pritchard
I have to start by saying that this might not be a fair assessment since I realized (at the very end of the book) that this is actually the third book in a series that just happens to be able to stand by itself. Although I'm sure the previous books provide context for the protagonist's background, I'm not really interested in reading them. Generally speaking, I have to like the protagonist in order to like the book. In this case, I was ambivalent about the protagonist and didn't find the story c ...more
Jul 13, 2009 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it!
Jun 02, 2015 Tita rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Este é o quarto livro que leio de David Liss, o terceiro que tem Benjamin Weaver como protagonista, que é um ex-pugilista, de origem portuguesa, que é um investigador privado, de renome.
Desta vez, Weaver vê-se chantageado , bem como a sua família e amigos , por um individuo que ninguém conhece, acabando por ter que aceitar um trabalho arriscado e com pouca informação.
Confesso que inicialmente tive uma certa dificuldade com a história, pois achei-o um bocadinho descritivo e maçudo. No entanto, à
Sep 15, 2009 Erin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"You become involved in some inquiry, and it is clear that there are great forces out there trying to manipulate you, and despite your best efforts, in the end you are manipulated.”

A fascinating mystery/intrigue, David Liss' The Devil's Company is set in 1722 London and is told in the first person by an ex-boxer (turned “thief taker”), Benjamin Weaver. Benjamin finds his hand forced by a client to investigate the connection a man-of-little-importance has, or had, with England’s corporate power h
Jun 02, 2012 Shane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A historical detective story set during the early days of “company men” is an interesting premise; in this case the target is the venerated and feared British East India Company that contributed much to the mother country’s empire on which the sun finally set.

I haven’t read the protagonist, or thieftaker (a.k.a. detective), Benjamin Weaver’s earlier episodes, but in this book he is blackmailed into spying on the Company to uncover secrets that even he is not told about. From this murky beginnin
L. Silvey
May 14, 2011 L. Silvey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I find it pretty amazing to find such satisfaction in a book about the textile trade and East India Company. The first couple chapters really grabs you so that when the pacing slows to explain some of the inner workings of the East India Company you find yourself pushing through because the intrigue is so intricately woven that you cannot help but get woven into it yourself.

I'm usually pretty good at figuring out whodunits, but this book threw me for a loop. The more I read, the more I had to r
Oct 05, 2009 Deirdre rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009-reads
This was my first ventures into the writings of David Liss, but apparently, it is the fourth book of his that features protagonist Benjamin Weaver, a former pugilist and current thief-taker. I kept billing this tale as a historical fiction, but having read it, I now would classify it more as a mystery. Nonetheless, it was a fun story.

In eighteenth century London, Weaver, by no means of his own, is cornered into "helping" an enigmatic businessman who is not who he seems. Weaver is ordered to acce
Oct 19, 2009 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3 1/2 stars. An eighteenth-century Jewish ”thieftaker” in London, Benjamin Weaver, is tricked and threatened into working for men who will not explain their purposes but give him illegal tasks to do. First, he must find his way into the confidences of those at the powerful East India Company, an import business that earns much of its profits from importing silks, and then he must steal. But who is at the heart of this – the company, the British government, the French government, or just some thu ...more
Mar 23, 2010 Lindsey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book, as I have Liss' other historical fictions. Benjamin Weaver is a captivating main character in that he is flawed but has good intentions.

I would love to give this book 5 stars but there were some parts of the story that were not resolved that bugged me. It kinda felt like certain parts were just thrown in to be convenient for the main character but they don't make sense and weren't explained.

**Spoiler Alert**
Here are some unresolved questions I had at the end of the bo
Jul 23, 2009 Tony rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers
Liss, David. THE DEVIL’S COMPANY. (2009). ****. The author is back on more familiar ground with this, his latest novel. It almost reaches the quality of his first novel, “A Conspiracy of Paper,” but not quite. This is more of a point-to-point thriller than a true historical mystery, in spite of the outstanding quality of the author’s research into the period. I suspect that it will have a wide audience and appear on best-seller lists soon. It is the story of Weaver, an ex-pugilist and now advent ...more
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I am a novelist living in San Antonio, Texas, though, for the record, I am not from Texas. I just live here. I have four novels published: A Conspiracy of Paper (which won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel) and A Spectacle of Corruption were both national bestsellers. They are set in 18th century London and feature Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish former pugilist, thief-taker for hire. Weaver will be ...more
More about David Liss...

Other Books in the Series

Benjamin Weaver (3 books)
  • A Conspiracy of Paper (Benjamin Weaver, #1)
  • A Spectacle of Corruption (Benjamin Weaver, #2)

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