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Gone, Baby, Gone: A Novel Paperback – September 7, 2010

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Reissue edition (September 7, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061336211
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061336218
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 4.9 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (358 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #88,272 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Cheese Olamon, "a six-foot-two, four-hundred-and-thirty-pound yellow-haired Scandinavian who'd somehow arrived at the misconception he was black," is telling his old grammar school friends Patrick Kenzie and Angie Gennaro why they have to convince another mutual chum, the gun dealer Bubba Rugowski, that Cheese didn't try to have him killed. "You let Bubba know I'm clean when it comes to what happened to him. You want me alive. Okay? Without me, that girl will be gone. Gone-gone. You understand? Gone, baby, gone." Of all the chilling, completely credible scenes of sadness, destruction, and betrayal in Dennis Lehane's fourth and very possibly best book about Kenzie and Gennaro, this moment stands out because it captures in a few pages the essence of Lehane's success.

Private detectives Kenzie and Gennaro, who live in the same working-class Dorchester neighborhood of Boston where they grew up, have gone to visit drug dealer Cheese in prison because they think he's involved in the kidnapping of 4-year-old Amanda McCready. Without sentimentalizing the grotesque figure of Cheese, Lehane tells us enough about his past to make us understand why he and the two detectives might share enough trust to possibly save a child's life when all the best efforts of traditional law enforcement have failed. By putting Kenzie and Gennaro just to one side of the law (but not totally outside; they have several cop friends, a very important part of the story), Lehane adds depth and edge to traditional genre relationships. The lifelong love affair between Kenzie and Gennaro--interrupted by her marriage to his best friend--is another perfectly controlled element that grows and changes as we watch. Surrounded by dead, abused, and missing children, Kenzie mourns and rages while Gennaro longs for one of her own. So the choices made by both of them in the final pages of this absolutely gripping story have the inevitability of life and the dazzling beauty of art.

Other Kenzie/Gennaro books available in paperback: Darkness, Take My Hand, A Drink Before the War, Sacred. --Dick Adler --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Vanished, in this complex and unsettling fourth case for PIs Patrick Kenzie and Angie Gennaro (after Sacred, 1997) is four-year-old Amanda McCready, taken one night from her apartment in Dorchester, a working-class section of Boston, where her mother had left her alone. Kenzie and Gennaro, hired by the child's aunt and uncle, join in an unlikely alliance with Remy Broussard and Nick Raftopoulos, known as Poole, the two cops with the department's Crimes Against Children squad who are assigned to the case. In tracing the history of Amanda's neglectful mother, whose past involved her with a drug lord and his minions, the foursome quickly find themselves tangling with Boston's crime underworld and involved in what appears to be a coup among criminals. Lehane develops plenty of tension between various pairs of parties: the good guys looking for Amanda and the bad guys who may know where she is; the two PIs and the two cops; various police and federal agencies; opposing camps in the underworld; and Patrick and Angie, who are lovers as well as business partners. All is delivered with abundant violence?e.g., bloated and mutilated corpses; gangland executions; shoot-outs with weapons of prodigious firepower; descriptions of sexual abuse of small children; threats of rape and murder?that serves to make Amanda's likely fate all the more chilling. Lehane tackles corruption in many forms as he brings his complicated plot to its satisfying resolution, at the same time leaving readers to ponder moral questions about social and individual responsibility long after the last page is turned. Author tour.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Dennis Lehane was born and raised in Dorchester, Massachusetts. He is the author of A Drink Before the War, which won the Shamus Award for Best First Novel; Darkness, Take My Hand; Sacred; Gone, Baby, Gone; Prayers for Rain; and the New York Times bestsellers Mystic River and Shutter Island.

Mystic River was a finalist for the PEN/Winship Award and won both the Anthony Award and the Barry Award for Best Novel, as well as the Massachusetts Book Award in Fiction given by the Massachusetts Center for the Book. Coronado, a collection of five stories and a play, was published in the fall of 2006 and includes the story "Until Gwen," which was adapted for the stage.

Lehane's work has been translated into 22 languages. He holds an MFA from Florida International University and is the writer-in-residence at Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida, where he runs the Writers in Paradise writers' conference. Before becoming a full-time writer, Lehane worked as a counselor with mentally handicapped and abused children, waited tables, parked cars, drove limos, worked in bookstores, and loaded tractor-trailers. He lives in the Boston area.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

87 of 89 people found the following review helpful By tdeal11 on November 25, 1999
Format: Paperback
This fourth book in this great series is Lehane's best one yet. The ending is very thought provoking and will stay with you for awhile. One very important piece of information is NOT to read this book if you haven't read the previous three. Information is disclosed that gives away the endings of some of the previous novels so they work best when read in order. Believe me when I say you'll want to read all of them.
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58 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Craig Larson VINE VOICE on June 24, 2002
Format: Paperback
Gone, Baby, Gone is one of Lehane's best Kenzie/Gennaro books, even though its subject matter, the kidnapping and abuse of children, isn't particularly sunny. Patrick and Angela are called on to investigate the disappearance of four-year-old Amanda McCready, who lives with an awful, distracted, zero of a mother. Her inattention to her daughter and her needs is painted so vividly that it is easy to hope that, wherever she is, Amanda's life is somehow better. This disappearance leads the detectives into a morass of drug dealers and pedophiles and crooked police.
Ultimately, it all leads to a gripping, heart-breaking climax that is pretty much a no-win situation for all involved. Sure, there are some contrivances in the plot that bring us to this point--as other reviewers have pointed out--but this is still one heck of a powerful book, with vivid characters and a real sense of setting and community. We can see how the neighborhood gives birth to monsters like Cheese Olamon and Angie's and Patrick's "friend" Bubba, while others choose another route for their lives. This is a step up from the previous book, Sacred, and shows Lehane getting ready for the powerhouse book to come, Mystic River.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Brett Benner VINE VOICE on October 13, 2001
Format: Paperback
Reading about the scum of humanity that Lehane's Patrick Kenzie and Angie Gennaro come up against is like watching a David Fincher movie. It's all grit staring you right in the face with unflinching honesty.The fourth book in the detective series has the duo searching for a missing child. In true Lehane fashion, there are more twists than a crazy straw, and the plot gets deeper and deeper and more horrifying as the truth comes out. Luckily there's the character of Bubba to add some needed comic relief to the story. A story that's hard to put down, and harder to shake when you finish it.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Marc Ruby™ HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on May 12, 2001
Format: Paperback
When Beatrice McCready and her husband ask Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro to help find a missing niece, the detective partners immediately realize that they do not want this case. At the end of three days, police have failed to turn up even a minor lead to the missing Amanda. Helene, Amanda's mother, is a drug addict and alcoholic who has raised the four-year-old child in near total neglect. This was a case with few possible good endings.
Kenzie and Gennaro are unable to resist Beatrice's pleas, though, and thus begins the harrowing tale of "Gone, Baby, Gone." As they dig away at a trail that leads to dead-end bars, drug dealers in prison and hints of child abuse the two detectives tease away at the mystery. When a shoot-out in a quarry nearly kills the detective team, the two realize that they are up against an evil that will stop at nothing to keep Amanda's fate a secret. An evil that corrupts everything it touches.
"Gone, Baby, Gone" is the grimmest of the Kenzie and Gennaro series. While not the most violent or horrific of the series, it eats away at you steadily as the detectives untangle Amanda's story. The fine narrative style and sparkling dialogue that marks a Lehane story draw you in and mesmerize you, but the little voice in your head never forgets that at the heart of this crime is a young child. You share in the anguish as betrayal destroys friendship, as right becomes wrong and relationships are strained to the breaking point.
Lehane has once again written the perfect balance between psychological thriller and devastating action story. "Gone, Baby, Gone" is not for the fainthearted. Long time Lehane fans will know what to expect, but newcomers might want to read some earlier novels in the series. This is intense noir fiction at it's best.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Bobbewig TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 3, 1999
Format: Paperback
After reading my first Dennis Lehane book -- Gone, Baby, Gone -- all I can say is I'm hooked! Great plot, very well- developed and real characters and a writing style that makes you want to finish the book in one sitting. I've just gone out and bought two others in the series --Sacred and Prayers For Rain -- and am looking for the others. If you like good,exciting mysteries, especially ones that depict real life situations (i,e, every outcome does not always have a happy ending), than add Lehane to your list of must-read authors!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Karen Kirsch on July 29, 1998
Format: Hardcover
I am a big fan of Dennis Lehane. His protago- nists, Patrick Kenzie and Angie Genarro have had a most interesting relationship in the first three books. Also, the plot lines have been incredibly captivating. How could Lehane tell a better story? Well, he did. I kind of ho-hummed at the beginning of the book with the kidnapping of a 4 year old girl. But after about the first 50 pages the ho-humming stopped. This was a 2 day engrossing read. The plot twists and all the tears I shed have put this on my list of favorite books. Lehane is a master of character, plot, and motive. I honestly couldn't see where this book was going. Can't wait to see what happens to Patrick and Angie in the next one.
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