Kemper's Reviews > Prayers for Rain

Prayers for Rain by Dennis Lehane
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's review
May 04, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: crime-mystery, detectives

Patrick and Angie have gone up against a lot of very bad people in their time as detectives. They’ve tangled with gang members, serial killers, the Irish and Italian mob, a religious cult, corrupt politicians, child molesters, and a variety of other evil sons-of-bitches. In Prayers for Rain, they meet their most sadistic and diabolical villain yet.

Angie has gone to work for another detective agency, and Patrick is operating solo. Without Angie around, he’s losing his taste for the job, though. However, he gets very interested when Karen Nichols hires him to help get a stalker off her back. Karen is the type of person who seems too nice and innocent to exist in the world. She just wants to marry her boyfriend and lead a normal life. Patrick and his personal wrecking crew Bubba manage to *ahem* 'persuade' the stalker to leave Karen alone and consider it a job well done. Karen sends Patrick a check signed with little hearts on it. Case closed.

Six months later, Patrick hears that Karen has committed suicide. He realizes that he forgot to return a call she made to him months before, and he’s shocked to hear that Karen’s life imploded after he last saw her. Her boyfriend was hit by a car and is in a coma. She lost her job and her home. He’s even more shocked to hear that Karen ended up on drugs and became a prostitute before she finally stepped off a building. Patrick can’t believe that the woman he met could fall apart so fast and starts looking into what happened. Fortunately for him, Angie is willing to come back and help out.

What they find is that Karen’s life was systematically destroyed by a mysterious figure. But why would anyone go to so much effort to crush a woman whose biggest dream was being able to afford a Toyota Camry? As Patrick and Angie try to figure out who ruined Karen’s life, they’re contacted by the man who did it. Now he’s threatening to do the same to them if they don’t back off, and he’s more than capable of making good on the threat.

Wow. It’d been several years since I’d read the Patrick & Angie novels, and I’d kind of forgotten how good Lehane was at creating creepy and effective villains as well as his knack for keeping you on the edge of your seat. I especially liked that while he never made Patrick and Angie superheroes, that they’re also not victims. If someone screws with them, they go on the offensive, and their motto is that payback is a bitch.

This one also has more of Bubba than the other books, and the big crazy bastard is in rare form here. Whether it’s using a tennis racket to negotiate with a stalker or escorting Patrick to a Mafia barbecue or schooling the detectives on the fine art of walking point in hostile territory, Bubba is always highly entertaining in a demented way. He is definately among the best of the bad-ass friends in the realm of ficional private detectives.

Now that I’ve re-read all of the P & A novels, I can not wait for the release of Moonlight Mile next month so I can find out what they’ve been up to for the last ten years.
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Comments <span class="smallText"> (showing 1-4 of 4) </span> <span class="smallText">(4 new)</span>

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Nancy Wow, I'm surprised Patrick and Angie aren't working together.

Kemper Nancy wrote: "Wow, I'm surprised Patrick and Angie aren't working together."

Can't say more without spoilers.

message 3: by Nancy (last edited Oct 07, 2010 10:34AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Nancy Say no more! I'll just have to be patient. Glad to see there's more of Bubba.

Kemper Nancy wrote: "Say no more! I'll just have to be patient. Glad to see there's more of Bubba."

You're gonna be really happy with all the stuff that Bubba gets to do in this one.

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