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Criminal Karma: A Novel Hardcover – July 28, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
It’s a morality tale and a jaw-dropping tour of Southern California at its most crazy and compelling. I loved it.”—T. Jefferson Parker, author of The Renegades and L.A. Outlaws
Top Customer Reviews
Rivers like his surname flows to another scheme. He knows the lightweight Evermore is a New Age freak and in fact is a disciple of popular guru Baba Raba. Rivers figures how hard can be to infiltrate the base of a charlatan in Venice. However, as he begins to learn more about Evermore Rivers he begins to like her as she is not the dimwit socialite he thought , but has substance; and for that matter so does the guru. As typical of his capers, all hell breaks loose as he and his sidekick are protecting their targets from a diabolical crime ring.
This is a zany satirical crime caper that hooks the audience from the first failed plan to the last. The story line is brisk and amusing as Rivers figures his crime karma is so negative, his time is due to balance his cosmic scales. Instead he finds himself deeper in the cosmic ooze as once again (see CRIMINAL PARADISE) the best laid plans of mice and licentious souls go astray.
The book has a lot of action and quick turns of event. It lacks some in the characterization department. I would have liked Rob and Reggie to have been fleshed out a little more. We find out that Rob has a daughter that is 'lost' to him but we are never told what happened. Perhaps this was in the previous book. Reggie is a fun guy but I would have liked to know more about his background. Other than that, prepare yourself for an action packed read.
Evelyn is also a member at the ashram and Rivers starts feeling sympathetic toward her. He decides that it is just as well that she has given the diamonds to the guru, because he doesn't want to steal from a friend. Baba Raba is no friend, and he may well be a lot worse. Throw in a possibly crooked developer a multi-million dollar deal, and the heat really picks up.
Steven M. Thomas has created a very sympathetic antihero in Robert Rivers. He makes no apologies for being a thief and intends to be the very best at his chosen vocation. His relationship with Reggie is delightfully drawn. The supporting cast is just as well rounded. There are no simple caricatures here, even the people who park the cars are given their own identity. Rivers himself is a fount of information about the world he lives in, but the information never gets in the way of the story. The story itself is a fun romp that takes us from the poshest resorts to rooms that are ready to be condemned. It is the kind of book that you could pick up and read again just for the delight of it.
I don't think I can emphasise enough how bad it is, I'm focusing on this mainly because it does detract from an otherwise readable book, I found just when I was getting into the plot and what was going on my mind was tripped up because a character says, "There is a way we can do it", (not an actual quote, an example), people don't talk like that, so why would criminals in Los Angeles in the 1990's speak like that?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
So our hero learns about meditation and all, while in jail and this, besides granting inner peace, allows him to spot a fraud. Read morePublished on July 13, 2011 by John Bowes
Criminal Karma is a satirical crime story, with lots of failed plans to steel a diamond necklace worth 250,000 dollars . Read morePublished on May 19, 2010 by Michael Tsapazis
I read this right after reading Thomas's first book, Criminal Paradise, and liked it even better. It is an fun, funny, colorful book about the adventures of Robert Rivers and his... Read morePublished on March 20, 2010 by JohnBeck