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Another Life (Burke #18)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  637 Ratings  ·  65 Reviews
In this blistering conclusion to the nationally bestselling series, Burke is forced into a journey that will change the lives of the urban survivalist and his outlaw family forever.The only person Burke has ever called father, known throughout the underground as “The Prof,” is in a coma, barely clinging to life in an off the-books hospital. So when Pryce, a slippery man wi ...more
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Published December 30th 2008 by Vintage Crime/Black Lizard
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Apr 05, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-fiction
With this book, Vachss puts the cap on the Burke series, and he closes it with a whimper rather than a bang. But . . . that's okay. This series has had more than its share of bangs, and I'm fine with seeing it end with an (view spoiler) Though I had trouble getting into the plot of this particular title, it did include Burke's visit with an obsessed book collector, a scene that so delighted me, I read that part twice.

I'm rati
Larry Bassett
“I’m looking for a plot where the guy has sex with women – not romantic sex; with prostitutes, or even rape – and brings his son along to watch, so he can teach the kid how to do it.”

Now, make the kid a baby and you have the nugget of the last book in the Burke series. The baby is kidnapped during one of the lessons and the father wants him back. Or does he? I am betting you might not be interested. But you have been reading the Burke series for a couple of years and this is the last book.

Feb 17, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Vachss, Andrew. ANOTHER LIFE. A Burke Mystery. (2008). *. Underground comix heroes, X-Box dialog, lame situations. This about sums up Vachss’ latest Burke novel. Burke’s “father,” known throughout the underworld as “Prof,” is found severely wounded outside of an industrial building. Burke knows he needs specialized help, but can’t take him to a regular hospital. He gets help from Pryce, a man who is like a shadow for a variety of agencies in Washington. Pryce sets the Prof up in a private hospit ...more
May 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm giving the 5 stars to the entire series which I found in the early 1990s. Vachss is a totally honest writer - he writes what he knows: and he knows about the children that society and the legal system designed to 'protect' that doesn't protect at all, and the monstrous evil predators that prey on them (whether it's the foster care system or some perv trolling on the internet). This isn't "Made palatable for TV to catch a predator" stuff - this is Revenge in a pimped out Plymouth. And kudos t ...more
Oct 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was tough getting this book as I knew that it would be the last in the Burke series, a series that has helped me both as a fledgling writer and at a deeper, personal level. But it went far beyond what I expected. I don't what to toss any spoilers in here but I will tell you that you find out a lot about Burke that you did not know before and the ending?


Sometimes, when you've let your children go, they come back when you least expect it.
Jul 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent end to an awesome series and all I can say is Good bye Burke you will be missed. Andrew Vachss is for me the best "True Crime Fiction" author out here.
Tom Hicks
Jul 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This my favourite Crime author and I've read all of his books. As this being another Burke novel I'm sure it will be as good as the rest.
Mar 10, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
This is the last Burke novel. I have loved this series about a rogue investigator, anti child abuse vigilante. This is not his best book but I will miss him and his particular subgenre.
Karen Simmons
Sep 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Unsettling, immersive, memorable storytelling.

Read most if not all Burke novels- Vachss is unlike any other author: hard, harsh, ultimately redemptive. Not for everybody, but A favorite of mine for 20 years plus.
bronagh begley
Nov 19, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Long on rant - short on action

You have to wade through shibboleths of speechifying to get to any nuggets of action
Gave up at 90%

Last of the Burke novels...
Jan 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, no, the, truth, that, one, wants, to, hear, about
Andrew Vachss is an acquired taste. People often find him excessively graphic or unrealistic. He is neither. I find it interesting that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo can come to the international attention of readers, and has an almost similar level of graphic violence and details thereof; while Vachss has been patiently spinning his cautionary tales for years.
I think the main difference is that it is easier to feel sympathy for Larsson’s characters. They are for the main good people, who figh
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: detective-series
The two year old son of a Saudi prince has been kidnapped. The average citizen knows nothing about it. The prince and his government have made sure that the story doesn't hit any press. There hasn't been a ransom demand and the investigation into the crime is going nowhere. The Saudis use their influence to pull in the CIA.

The CIA knows the only man who might have a chance at finding the boy. Burke lives in the murky underground where anything is possible and nothing surprises him. Burke is a c
Feb 15, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Andrew Vachss got back on that horse. He’s been writing books about a criminal named Burke and has underworld family for 24 years and 18 novels. “Another Life” is to be the last one. The prospect of this being his last book worried me as I’m a huge fan of this series. But it didn’t worry me because the series would end…that saddened me. It worried me because the novel before this, “Terminal” was kind of disappointing and I was wondering if maybe this series is ending 2 novels too late. It turns ...more
Rob Thompson
Dec 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was reading the reviews of Vachss last Burke book, and decided to add my two cents -- mostly because I had a thought about why people started to dislike this series as it progressed.

For me, Another Life is a masterpiece, one of the finest books in the series. I was impressed with the author's ability to provide more depth to a character (Burke) who had already been fairly well fleshed out.

But I noticed many people have said the series became stale, and dark, and depressing. Well, it was always
Aug 24, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started to listen to this book on CD but couldn't follow the rapid changes in setting since they didn't have chapter breaks. Also, the cast of characters was not traditionally introduced as in so much fiction today. That is, when a new recurring character in the story came up, there was no explication of the person's relationship to Burke or any back story. While I appreciated the avoidance of this usually heavy-handed character introduction, it was still confusing when listening (and driving) ...more
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
In the most recent of a long, long series (18 books and perhaps still counting), these books have become too mannered and too cryptic. The plot in this book was paper thin, and there was way too much obtuse, hard-to-follow, pseudo-mystical plot progress -- instinct, gut, "I just know it," and "speaking without talking" sort of BS -- that is, in my mind, evidence of an author who's too tired too do the real hard work of storytelling and propelling a plot.

Vachss, whom I heard on the radio some ye
Tim Niland
Jan 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009-reads
If this does turn out to be the final Burke adventure as Vachss has promised, the unlicensed private eye and career criminal has gone out with a whopper. When Burke's surrogate father and mentor The Prof is critically wounded, a shadowy government agent materializes to make Burke a deal he can't possibly refuse: The Prof gets top shelf medical care if Burke can find the missing infant son of a Saudi sheik living in New York. This becomes the widest ranging Burke adventure too, with the great ant ...more
Dec 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's a testament to the power of Burke that this read like a parody. Burke slashes his hand through the air to cut people off enough to give himself RSI and more fist-bumps and hi-fives are given out than at your average basketball game - assumption for comedic effect: never been to a basketball game.

The book was one long lecture and if this had been the first Burke book I read, it would have also been the last, but no, it was just the last and the last. For real. As the prof might have said "wh
Feb 12, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's over. I think Andrew Vachss tried to end the Burke series several volumes back but for some obscure reason, changed his mind, again and again. In this, the last one, I don't think Burke/Vachss has anything new to tell - same ideas phrased differently.
I've been following Burke since I stumbled across one of the books, ... Belle, in the early 90's, and I was so fascinated by the character that I went back to the previous novels. The darkness of his vision and his take on life leaves me gaspi
David Ward
Another Life (Burke #18) by Andrew Vachss (Vintage Crime/Black Lizard)(Fiction – Mystery) is another better Burke novel. A Saudi prince aged two is kidnapped from his father's side - and Burke can't figure out who kidnapped the child or why. Things might not be as they appear in Burke's world. A side story which opened the book involved the Prophet being terribly wounded in a shooting and ensconced in a private off-the-books medical facility. Another side story represents the first time someone ...more
Jan 31, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
#18 in the Burke series. Burk is an ex-convict, who endeavors to fly beneath the radar, and with a group of unconventional friends and Pansy, a blue Neapolitan mastiff, wages war on child abusers. This 2008 entry is the final book of the series.

Burke is approached to recover the kidnapped child of a Saudi prince. The prince, who takes the toddler along when having rough sex with hookers, was drugged and his son taken. The lack of a ransom demand and no leads in the pedophile community complicat
Aug 28, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In spite of myself I keep reading the Burke books and after each one I say, "that's it, no more." I picked up this one in particular because it teased that we would learn more about where Burke came from. Dare I imagine he might stumble across his mother? (I thought perhaps something like Michael Connoelly's Harry Bosch character, which was really a tour de force.) Alas the conclusion we arrived at was not nearly as explosive, but it was true for the character. If you've read the others you'll r ...more
Jan 11, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-fiction
The final Burke novel has him trying to get back an Arab prince's kidnapped child, but of course all is not as it seems . . . the Arab is a pervert, the kidnaper's really the mother trying to save the child, etc. As usual in later Vachss, the plot could fit in a thimble, so there's lots of room for his cod street philosophy. How this series deteriorated over the years is very depressing. Definitely time to retire Burke....
Veach Glines
Vachss has difficulty in that his own opinions and voice come out of his characters' mouths, rather than his "characters opinions" are stated clearly. Maybe it is a fine line and I am being too picky, but there are many things a character can say and do...with the right back story. Burke has never had much need for caring about things beyond his own horizon---but now, it seems he (and his crew) has an opinion about everything!
Peter Flom
Sep 11, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysterythriller
This is the last of the Burke novels and probably wouldn't work for people who are unfamiliar with the series.

As readers of the series know, the Burke novels are dark dark dark. In this one, the child of an heir to the Saudi throne has been kidnapped from his abusive father.

The novel is also a farewell to Burke and his group - a lot of stuff is wrapped up. Fans of the series will want to read it.
Andrea Mesch
Feb 25, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I love the first 4 or 5 of the Burke novels. But then they started to go downhill. I still bought and read them all, loyalty, hope and knowing that they were written for the good cause made me do it. Sad that they were all flesh, but no bones lately. And where was Flood? In one of his interviews Mr. Vachss promised that she'd return in the end. I missed her...
Jari Pirhonen
This was the final novel in the Burke series. I have read ten Burke novels before and this was not worse or better than the others. Good hard-core crime spiced with inconvenient truths/opinions the author wants to spill out with his characters mouth. Being the last book of the series created added interest.
Aug 29, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
In the final novel of the Burke series, Andrew Vachss falls a little short. I had hoped Burke, a quintessential conflicted anti-hero, would go out with a bang... not a whimper. However, Vachss delivers a solid finale. It's well worth the read simply to be able to say goodbye to all of the characters you've grown to love over all these years.
David Horney
Dec 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-45th-year
this wraps up the burke series. it's not a nice neat bundle of resolution but it is satisfying. the plot is a bit confusing--i still don't understand why the israelis had to be blamed for the bad guy's death, but that's not really the point of the book. it is about the people and how it turns out for them. if you haven't read the other book this one won't necessarily make a good impression.
Kevin Ould
It was alright. Unfortunately I found that I liked the series less and less as I got closer to the end. I can't quite put my finger on it but the story seemed to get lost with Burke's(Vachss) rambling inner monologues. Done the series now and onto other things. Still a fan and reading Vachss' other series' though.
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Andrew Vachss has been a federal investigator in sexually transmitted diseases, a social-services caseworker, a labor organizer, and has directed a maximum-security prison for “aggressive-violent” youth. Now a lawyer in private practice, he represents children and youths exclusively. He is the author of numerous novels, including the Burke series, two collections of short stories, and a wide varie ...more
More about Andrew Vachss...

Other Books in the Series

Burke (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Flood (Burke, #1)
  • Strega (Burke, #2)
  • Blue Belle (Burke, #3)
  • Hard Candy (Burke, #4)
  • Blossom (Burke, #5)
  • Sacrifice (Burke, #6)
  • Down in the Zero (Burke, #7)
  • Footsteps of the Hawk (Burke, #8)
  • False Allegations (Burke, #9)
  • Safe House (Burke, #10)
“You want proof evolution is for real, don’t waste your time with fossils; just check out the New York City rat. They started out as immigrants, stowaways in some ship’s cargo hold. Only the survivors got to breed, and they’ve been improving with every new
litter. Smarter, faster, stronger. Getting ready to rule. Manhattan wouldn’t be the first island they took over.”
More quotes…