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Keller's Fedora

(John Keller)

by
3.96  ·  Rating details ·  570 ratings  ·  85 reviews
In this brand-new novella, Keller, everyone’s favorite assassin for hire, is Chicago-bound on Amtrak's City of New Orleans, ready to do what he does best.

But it’s complicated. Usually there’s someone ready to point him toward the target. Or he’ll have a photo, say. Or, bare minimum, a name and address.

Not this time. When he gets to Baker’s Bluff, Illinois, he’ll have to p
...more
Hardcover, 96 pages
Published April 30th 2017 by Subterranean Press (first published 2016)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
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 ·  570 ratings  ·  85 reviews


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Dan Schwent
Dec 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-books, 2016
After Dot convinces him to come out of retirement for one last job, Keller has to play detective to figure out who the client wants eliminated, his wife's lover. Only things get complicated...

At the end of the last Keller book, I was hoping Block would let his hitman for hire rest. However, now I'm glad he didn't. Keller's Fedora was a fun read.

Keller's Fedora sees Keller buy a new hat and take the train north to bump someone off, leaving his wife and daughter in New Orleans. As with all Keller
...more
Kemper
Dec 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve always thought that a man had to have a certain amount of class to pull off wearing a fedora, and Keller fits that profile even if he is a hired killer.

In this short novella Keller gets an interesting proposition. A potential client wants a hit man to take care of his wife’s lover, but he doesn’t know who it is. So the job involves doing some investigating before getting to the murder, and Keller finds himself so intrigued that he buys a new hat because he’s in a detective frame of mind. Th
...more
Karl
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Lawrence Block has a number of series characters. With Keller's Fedora we catch up on Keller, who has starred in five previous novels and a number of Kindle only short stories (which I have not read) and will no doubt appear in a collection, that started with the book "Hit Man".

You do not necessarily need to read the earlier books to enjoy this novella, although you would be selling yourself short if you did not read them. All that one needs to know is that Keller is a hitman and receives his as
...more
Andrew Smith
Jun 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Veteran crimemeister Block has written more books than I can count, including five previous books featuring Keller, the stamp collecting assassin. The previous Keller books are episodic, covering a number of ‘hits’, each with its own intrigue. The act of murder itself is seldom covered, other than in passing, the focus being on the bigger picture: the place, the people and Keller’s thoughts and planning process. There is always a twist along the way.

This book comprises just one story, of novell
...more
Col
Mar 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: b, 2018, re-read, 2020
Synopsis/blurb……

In this brand-new novella, Keller, everyone’s favorite assassin for hire, is Chicago-bound on Amtrak's City of New Orleans, ready to do what he does best.

But it’s complicated. Usually there’s someone ready to point him toward the target. Or he’ll have a photo, say. Or, bare minimum, a name and address.

Not this time. When he gets to Baker’s Bluff, Illinois, he’ll have to play private detective before he can get down to business.

Well, okay. He knows how it works. So before he board
...more
Eric_W
Jun 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If this keeps up, I may have to take up stamp collecting. A new Keller novella is always worth celebrating and when I saw several for sale as Kindle singles on Amazon, I snapped them all up. This one does not disappoint and has the usual waggish dialogue, puns, and stamps including Keller's own unique way of handling a ticklish problem.
Richard
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
Lawrence Block writes "Well, it took a while, but I'm delighted to tell you that my brand-new Keller novella, Keller's Fedora, is on sale right now at all Amazon sites. It's a Kindle Single, which assures it a heavy promotional push from the Amazonians."
This is indeed newsworthy as the author says it is an original poece of writing about Keller, we hate to love but find drawn to this no-nonsense contract killer. The previous ebooks have just been the stories taken from the novels so as a real fa
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Ross Cumming
May 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's always a treat to get something new from Lawrence Block and this Kindle Single novella is no exception. It's a short story involving loveable hit man Keller. We find him settled down in New Orleans with his wife and child, living a peaceful life, dealing stamps and doing the odd renovation job when out of the blue he gets a phone call from Dot offering him a 'job'. The 'hit' is not your run of the mill killing and therefore Keller accepts and heads off to Chicago. As usual not all goes to p ...more
Cateline
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love Keller's.......er, Block's sense of humor. Wry, self-deprecating and on the macabre side, it's enough to make the reader laugh out loud but then catch themselves. I mean, really, what's funny about murder?

Keller. Lawrence Blocks laconic hit man makes a return in this novella that captures the essence of the character. If you appreciate a bit of gallows humor, run out and buy the full length Keller books. Well worth the time. I guarantee.
Geoff. Lamb
Mar 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Keller in a more ruminative frame of mind. And wearing a fedora!
Kathy
Mar 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully composed novella. Anyone who has not read the earlier Keller books (such as myself) will want to find and read them. I highly recommend this short book as comic relief for anyone stuck in airport due to snowstorm, or more appropriately in a train station. From the selection of the hat to the visit to Chicago's Art Institute to pay homage to Hopper's Nighthawks where two diners are clad in Fedoras...big smiles. Keller, though retired and living happily in New Orleans with his wife and ...more
Ronald Keeler
Sep 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
Keller’s Fedora by Lawrence Block is a Kindle Single stand-alone mystery short story. Published in 2016 it follows Keller (his real name) as he reverts to a long ago profession of hired assassin. He had pretty much retired from that type of work and had settled down with his wife (who knew he was an assassin) and his daughter (who didn’t know). The money he had saved from his assassin jobs allowed him to pursue his current love, stamp collecting.

But a call on a burner phone from his previous ass
...more
Midwest Geek
May 05, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those familiar with the Keller series.
Shelves: mystery, humor, novellas
This is either a short novella or an extended short story, but either way, it's a fun read. Even though this story does not depend critically on having read others, this is probably not the place to start with the John Keller series. To fully appreciate the context, one ought to have some background on the guy, more than is provided by the publisher's description. An assasin for hire, he remains relatively ethical. The only people he kills are those who probably deserve it. Even worse, his prese ...more
Lady Delacour
Great book jacket!
This was an interesting story
with humorous dry wit banter...
spoiled by crude grade school humor.
Marking this author off my list.
To much childish perversion.
Narrator author, Lawrence Block
was not to my liking.
Better speeded up to 1.50x.
Not clean. Very crude and foul language.
Virginia Aikens
Jun 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Cleverly Done

I had been told about this series several times but have never gotten around to reading it before. When I saw the Kellerman shorts on kindle I decided to go for it. After this one I am definitely hooked, though I should probably examine why I find a hit man such a charming fellow.

Anyone who enjoys dry humor and clever mystery would enjoy this story, and it might just hook them as it has me.
Bill Williams
Aug 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this novella, the semi-retired assassin called Keller rides the rails from New Orleans to Chicago in search of a trophy wife's lover. When Keller finds the man, there is a killing, but the story goes on taking an odd turn with Keller steering into the skid.

The interesting thing about Keller is that his mind wanders. Whether due to age or over-thinking, Keller second guesses everything and ponders the little inanities of life as he goes about his chosen profession.

Entertaining stuff.
Craig Pittman
The prolific Lawrence Block has written book series about a recovering alcoholic private eye named Scudder and a bookish burglar named Bernie, but by far my favorite series from him concerns a killer named Keller.

The Keller books were usually a collection of short pieces, loosely linked. In each one, solitary New Yorker Keller would get an assignment from his acerbic contact Dot in White Plains and then go find and kill his target, usually dealing with lots of complications before and after tha
...more
Simon
Mar 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
A darkly witty tale of a kill-for-hire that, as always, went a bit wrong

tl;dr at Overall, as always

With this short story/novelette Block expands the story of Keller, a hitman-philatelist, who comes out of retirement for a peculiar job. It's completely standalone though, requiring no prior knowledge of the character, so it's a damn good primer for anyone wondering if reading about him is worth it.

Keller has to do double the work in this, as he has to not just kill the target, but identify who it
...more
Ralph Blackburn
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Keller's Fedora by Lawrence Block- Another great Keller story from Lawrence Block. Keller is the stamp collecting hitman who just can't stop because it's what he's good at. For this job, Keller doesn't even know who he's suppose to kill, so he must do some detective work first, following the client's wayward wife around until he zeroes in on who he thinks is the interloper. Then it's time to act. But as usual, life interferes with well-set plans and problems arise. Most of the violence is done o ...more
Gail
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Was delighted to discover this story by Lawrence Block that I hadn't read. I've read all the Hit Man series plus all the Matt Scudder and most of the Bernie Rhodenbarr. Matt Scudder stories will always remain my favorites but I like the others, too.
Ron
Apr 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novella is a worthy entry in the Keller series--good banter and some nice complexity for such a routine mission.
Joe Gaspard
May 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's always good to see that Keller is doing well and keeping both of his avocations going. I do miss those long and meandering conversations on Dot's porch in White Plains, but their somewhat disjointed conversations on a burn phone partly make up for the lemonade-fueled porch chats of yesteryear. This story has all of the requisite Keller -- stamps, a job, a hitch, and an out-of-the-box solution. Keller remains as jaunty as his new fedora and while I might not vote for him for president, I'd g ...more
Jennifer
May 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Love Keller... can't help myself. Lawrence Block is awesome and his characters always draw me in. I've been a fan of Keller since he premiered in Playboy many, many years ago and I'm happy that Block continues to keep us up to date on what Keller's up to now.

Keller's Fedora, while short, was a great read and gave Keller some new experiences - being a PI for a moment. Entertaining read and perfect during a day of flying across the country!
Strega
May 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Keller is just such a guilty pleasure for me!! Here's this hit man, and he's just a regular guy with a wife and a daughter and every so often his buddy Dot calls and he goes off and does his job. I really love the matter-of-fact quality in Lawrence Block's writing because his stories just wouldn't work near as well otherwise.
Jerry Hooten
May 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An expected pleasure

I like the new Keller. I've liked all the Keller stories, and they've progressed to a new level. Always a surprise, and always delightful!
Andrew
May 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
*Classic* Keller yarn. Totally worth the sticker price.
Josetta
Love Keller! This one did not disappoint. I really did not expect how it ended, which is the point of a good story, isn't it?
Thad Allen
Jun 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great read. I always enjoy visiting Mr. Keller.
Michael Smith
This is a novella -- only 96 pages -- so it’s very focused, but it still has the depth of a full-fledged novel. And that says something about Block’s unquestioned skill with words. In fact, Block has several popular crime fiction series under his belt, and a shelf full of awards, but his stories about John Paul Keller, the philosophical, rather wistful, and very professional hitman -- an Urban Lonely Guy -- are some of his most enjoyable. Keller is nothing like the leg-breaking heavies who work ...more
Norma
( Format : Audiobook )
"Dead as a white alligator."
No need to rehearse any background story here as the synopsis has given a very thorough outline. What it does not convey, however, is the total delight of the interplay of the protagonists in both action and words, starting with the erstwhile hitman's purchase of a fedora and including his reading of a detective novel, bought at the railway station, for tips on how to be a P.I. Written largely as conversation, this flows naturally, if rather qui
...more
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Lawrence Block has been writing crime, mystery, and suspense fiction for more than half a century. He has published in excess (oh, wretched excess!) of 100 books, and no end of short stories.

Born in Buffalo, N.Y., LB attended Antioch College, but left before completing his studies; school authorities advised him that they felt he’d be happier elsewhere, and he thought this was remarkably perceptiv
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Other books in the series

John Keller (5 books)
  • Hit Man (Keller, #1)
  • Hit List (Keller, #2)
  • Hit Parade (Keller, #3)
  • Hit and Run (Keller, #4)
  • Hit Me (Keller, #5)

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