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Ishmael Toffee Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Length: 97 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

PRAISE FOR ROGER SMITH

"Smith writes with the brutal beauty of an Elmore Leonard in a very bad mood. " THE WASHINGTON POST

"If you are a fan of George Pelecanos or Dennis Lehane, give Roger Smith a close look." BOOKPAGE

"Smith's writing is astonishing." CLEVELAND PLAIN DEALER

"Roger Smith is the shooting star of the crime scene." RADIO EUROPE

About the Author

Roger Smith interviews an ex-convict who inspired Ishmael Toffee. Warning: Contains graphic descriptions of violence.
bit.ly/yDcBK8

Product Details

  • File Size: 558 KB
  • Print Length: 97 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Tin Town (February 22, 2012)
  • Publication Date: February 22, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007CLETKW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #405,248 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

"Roger Smith writes with brutal beauty." THE WASHINGTON POST

Roger Smith's thrillers MAN DOWN, SACRIFICES, CAPTURE, DUST DEVILS, WAKE UP DEAD, MIXED BLOOD & ISHMAEL TOFFEE are published in eight languages and two are in development as movies in the U.S.

His books have won the GERMAN CRIME FICTION AWARD and been nominated for SPINETINGLER MAGAZINE BEST NOVEL awards. He also writes horror under the pen name Max Wilde.

Website: http://www.rogersmithbooks.com/

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Thank god that ebooks have brought the novella back to life by creating a market for titles like this one. I started reading this on my commute home with no intent of finishing it the same evening--but it's that kind of book: you'll read it even though you had other plans. Ishmael Toffee is a blistering thrill ride that grabs you with its talons and won't let go. With its setting in the slums and suburbs of Cape Town and fresh characters delineated crisply, this story doesn't waste one word. Next time you feel tempted to watch some warmed-over recycled attempt at noir on cable or Netflix, plunk down a few bucks for Ishmael Toffee instead. It's better noir than I've seen on screen in years, yet only takes about two hours to read. It's a better thriller than works four times its length. Roger Smith is one helluva writer, and this work crackles with the same kind of energy as Jim Thompson or Richard Stark at their mad best.
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Like Smith's previous three novels, this novella violently clashes the pampered wealthy of Cape Town, South Africa with the desperately impoverished. In this case, Ishmael Toffee is an ex-gangster just out of prison. A very violent man who has shed too much blood and has reached a point where he has lost his stomach for more violence. He now wants to live out his life quietly and indulging in a passion he picked up in prison--gardening. When Ishmael is given a job tending to the gardens of a wealthy man's home and is confronted with the knowledge that this man is sexually abusing his 6 year-old daughter, Ishmael can either turn his back to this evil or risk everything to save this girl. What pulses through this work are the raw motivations of the characters: evil, cowardice, avarice and ultimately, heroism. What's also on full display is Smith's prose--no other thriller writer is writing such lean and powerful prose. 'Ishmael Toffee' is less violent and has a lower body count than any of Smith's previous three novels, but it's every bit as powerful, moving, and gritty, and is a must read for crime fiction fans. As an added treat, Smith also included a bittersweet short story of failed redemption. 'Ishmael Toffee' is a perfect introduction to readers of one of crime thrillers rising new stars.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This ain't no cozy beach read. This is hard hitting, heart-wrenching stuff. Smith doesn't shy away from the horrors that the child in this novella goes through. Fast-paced and nerve-wracking you never know if Toffee will follow through on his promise to help Cindy or lose her to the money starved occupants of Tin Town.

My first from Roger Smith and definantly not my last. Highly Recommended.
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Roger Smith has a definite talent for bringing unusual, hard characters to life. He writes about Cape Town, South Africa and the dichotomy of cultures there - the poverty stricken and the very rich.

Ishmael Toffee is out of prison for the first time in twenty years. He is working at his first job - ever - gardening, a passion he discovered in prison, after he decided that he didn't want to kill any more. He had been an assassin at the prison for most of his time sentenced there.

Smith develops the character of Ishmael very adeptly. He is a hard, extremely dangerous man who has fought and scrabbled for everything he has ever had his whole life. He is not a man you would expect to be a hero. But Smith introduces young Cindy into the story, daughter of Ishmael's employer, and the reader finds that the poor/criminals can be heroes and the rich/high society can be monsters.

"Ishmael Toffee" is a powerful story - one I won't be forgetting any time soon.

Also included with this novella is a short story by Smith called "Falling." Again taking place in Cape Town, the reader is introduced to the world of a man who has lost everything because of drugs and is given one more chance at redemption.

Be warned that neither story is for the faint of heart - violence, rough language, and abuse abound. I've never been to South Africa but the stories read as much too true to this reader.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Have you ever been so smitten by the quality of the writing that you continued to read a book that you might otherwise have set aside because it's depressing, violent, and utterly devoid of any possibility of a happy ending? Ishmael Toffee fell into this category for me, but I finished the book and the bonus short story that followed, fascinated by the opportunity to witness life struggles in a place where the most fortunate inhabitants are wary, shrewd, and strong--both physically and emotionally. Both the novella and the short story were outstanding examples of contemporary fiction. They transported me to a horrible place, yet I found it impossible to turn away. Surprisingly, I cared about these essentially unlovable protagonists, their failures, and their follies. Sadly, the sleaze factor and the prolific violence rang true--there is nothing redeeming about it; the stories are simply how the very poor survive, or don't, in South Africa.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I read this book in one evening - I just could not put it down. The writing is tight, tense, with no fluff and the story is compelling. The central character, a professional assassin named Ishmael Toffee, is a highly sympathetic character and the setting -- Cape Town, South Africa -- comes alive in this taut thriller. Excellent read.
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