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Hell Bent: A Brady Coyne Novel (Brady Coyne Novels) Hardcover – September 30, 2008

4.2 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews
Book 24 of 25 in the Brady Coyne Mysteries Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

After two dozen adventures (One-Way Ticket, etc.), Tapply's Brady Coyne, a refreshingly decent lawyer, remains a pleasure to see at work. After a seven-year absence from Brady's life, Alexandria Shaw, a former lover, walks into his Boston office and asks him to handle her brother's divorce case. Gus Shaw, an independent photojournalist who lost his right hand in Iraq and is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, promises to be a difficult client, but soon after Brady and Gus talk, Gus is found dead, an apparent suicide. Though no evidence suggests murder, Alexandria is convinced her brother didn't kill himself; Brady agrees to probe, with predictable results. While Brady tends to telegraph important aspects of the case, his investigation reveals a lot of the hidden collateral damage of the Iraq war: bereaved families, physically or psychologically wounded vets and the people who try to help those who have suffered. (Oct.)
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Review

"Tapply just keeps writing excellent prose, filled with fine characters and solidly crafted plots….If you haven’t already discovered him, start now." – Globe and Mail (Toronto) on Nervous Water

"Adept at plot and characterization…Tapply can be counted on to provide maximum enjoyment." – San Diego Union-Tribune on Out Cold

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Product Details

  • Series: Brady Coyne Novels (Book 24)
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books; First Edition edition (September 30, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031235830X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312358303
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,544,932 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tina on September 30, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I have to start this review off by saying that I LOVE WILLIAM TAPPLY and I ADORE BRADY COYNE.

Hell Bent is the newest book in the Brady Coyne series. Brady has been away from Evie for 4 months and is bored - enter his ex-girlfriend and her brother - who bring along with them murder and mayhem.

The only problem is that the mayhem in Hell Bent is kept to a bare minimum. Although there are some great description of Brady Coyne moments - especially with his dog Henry - this book drags and drags. There is very little chemistry between any of the characters - I did not feel any heat between Brady and Alex and the Gus character is in the first third of the book only. Actually, the only fun relationship in this book was between Brady and Horowitz, who makes a return appearance from previous books.

I love reading about Brady and his home-cooked meals and his loving relationship with his dog, which, in itself, carries a lot of the Brady Coyne charms - but this book left me blah and with a nagging sense that now I will have to wait another year before I get a *more interesting* Brady Coyne novel.

I hate writing this review because I will always continue to read Tapply's books - but I have to be honest and say that, for me, this one did not do anything for me. Bring on the next Brady Coyne book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is the penultimate Brady Coyne mystery and I am holding off reading the final book because I hate to say goodbye to the characters of whom I have become so fond. The crime and consequent solving sequence always is secondary for me to the latest developments in Attorney Coyne's life. As a New England resident, I very much enjoy the local color of this series and the writing is always crisp and sprinkled with sly humor. Altogether, a most enjoyable read. I recommend the book and the series. A similar and highly recommended mystery series, set on nearby Martha's Vineyard, is that by Philip Craig with whom Tapply coauthored three crossover books.
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Format: Hardcover
Brady Coyne, Boston family lawyer, takes on a new client when his old flame, Alexandria ["Alex"] Shaw, asks him to represent her brother, Gus, in a divorce suit. Gus, an outstanding photojournalist, has recently returned from Iraq, where he lost his right hand, and is suffering from PTSD. Then within days, Gus is found dead of a head wound, an apparent suicide.

Alex doesn't believe that Gus killed himself, and prevails upon Brady to undertake an investigation to determine the truth. He travels all around Boston and its environs, meeting with various people in an effort to learn more about Gus and what he saw in Iraq, where he supposedly took many revealing pictures. Were they connected to his death?

Tapply writes about Boston with a fervor equal to that of any Patriots fan. He addresses the losses of loved ones in the Iraq conflict with deep insights, and keenly addresses the frustrations and bitterness of veterans. The story is told with a hard-boiled attitude, when necessary, and is softened by the ups and downs of Brady's love life. A tale well-told and very much worth reading, and recommended.
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By JD Martin on December 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this as a gift for my Mom who loved it and then loaned it to me. She is 80+ and loves all of William Tapply's books. Great book, really keeps you on the edge of your seat. Well written with likeable characters.
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Format: Hardcover
I thought that this was the first Brady Coyne novel I've read, but mention of THE DUTCH BLUE ERROR rings a bell in my memory. I've been off mysteries for a long while, and have forgotten many that I once read. Be that as it may, I found this quite satisfying. There's a lot of backgroundof previous stories I haven't read, but I did find this good as a stand alone book.The setting of the situation and the meeting of the eventual victim works quite well I quite like how this builds from a rather pedestrian mystery up to one of monumental proportions. Highly recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition
A lawyer offers his services to a troubled Iraq war veteran who is getting divorced. Boston attorney Brady Coyne who is here appearing in Tapply's 24th novel. One prolific writer. He first appeared in 1984. A good character. His ex-flame walks into his office, hasn't seen her for seven years, and asks him to represent her brother, Gus, who has PTSD. But he gets murdered, seems like a cut and dry suicide, but of course it's not. And another friend of Gus's gets murdered too. I really enjoyed this and could read more.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I HAVE BEEN READING MYSTERIES FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS AND EVERY YEAR I CREATE A LIST OF FAVORITE AUTHORS. WILLIAM TAPPLY IS ALWAYS ON THAT LIST. WHEN ANOTHER REVIEWER SAID THIS TITLE "DRAGGED AND DRAGGED," I FELT I HAD TO STAND UP FOR MR. TAPPLY. YOU CARE ABOUT BRADY COYNE AND HIS LIFE AND HIS FRIENDS, BOTH HUMAN AND ANIMAL. YOU WANT TO KNOW ALL ABOUT THEM. AND ANY BOOK IN THIS WONDERFUL BRADY COYNE SERIES IS A GIFT.
THANK YOU, MR. TAPPLY. START THE SERIES WITH Death at Charity's Point (Missing Mysteries).
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Format: Hardcover
"And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell." -- Matthew 5:30

Many readers will miss the Biblical allusion in this story so I have quoted it above. If you don't understand the spiritual context of this story, you probably won't enjoy it very much. William G. Tapply has written a sort of morality play in which people are tempted, fall into sin, and the sin drags them down into worse actions . . . until the eternal pit awaits.

The book opens with a prologue about a violent anti-war protest in 1971 at UMass in Amherst, Massachusetts that turns fatal. Thank goodness for that. Without that background, hardly anyone would stick with this book long enough to get to the ultimate mystery.

The story revolves around Augustine ("Gus") Shaw, brother of Brady's old girlfriend, Alexandria ("Alex") Shaw. Gus lived for the hot spots of conflict, taking photographs as an independent . . . but taking huge risks. His methods caught up with him in Iraq where a landmine removed his right hand, the one he needed more for photojournalism. Rather than taking this change as an opportunity to be a good husband and father, Gus just withdraws into sadness . . . another war victim with a lingering case of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

His wife is divorcing him, and Gus is trying to avoid the whole subject. Alex wants Brady to represent Gus, and that's how Brady and Gus meet. Gus isn't the kind of client that Brady would normally take on.

In the meantime, Evie Banyon is still in California and avoiding contact with Brady. He's sad and lonely. Does that mean his heart is open to Alex?
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