This is a book that deals with some sensitive topics. Rape. War Crimes. In addition to murder. I'd like to say that Lawrence Block deals with them in a sensitive way. But he doesn't. And I think that the reader has to understand that he is not trivializing these. Bernie Rhodenbarr is a burglar, albeit one with a hear of gold He acknowledges that what he does is reprehensible, but it is what he does, and he enjoys it. In this story he is set to commit a large scale robbery on Friday night, and on Wednesday he decides to blow off a bit of steam by burglarizing someones apartment. He almost gets caught when the owner comes home early, and Bernie hides under her bed. Unfortunately, the lady who lives in the apartment has been fed some rohypnol, the date rape drug, and she is raped on the bed, with Bernie underneath. This forms one arc within the book, as Bernie tries to find the rapist, to provide payback.
The second arc revolves some pictures of a war criminal who received some plastic surgery. The photos showed his new appearance and some thought that Bernie might have the photos.
Bernie solves the problem, gains a new girlfriend, finds new girlfriends for two of his friends, gets a rapist off the street and solves a few murders and several other crimes. And he still manages to make a profit.
The book revolves around coincidence. It is fast paced, has witty/snappy dialog, a lot of humor, and is generally a good read. One of my favorite of the Burglar series.