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Prince of Thieves: A Novel Hardcover – August 10, 2004

4.2 out of 5 stars 105 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The dark third novel by the author of The Standoff isn't the fast-paced thriller it's marketed to be. It is, rather, a story of doomed love focusing on Doug MacRay, a Boston-based career thief (he comes from Charlestown, "a breeding ground for bank and armored-car robbers") who becomes enamored with the manager of the bank he and his pals have just robbed. Claire Keesey, who has been badly traumatized by the robbery, later begins to develop feelings for him as well, unaware that a masked MacRay was the lead perpetrator in the heist that turned her life upside down. Hogan then leads readers through a long-winded labyrinth of inner reflection as Doug spends much of the book pondering whether he should quit the criminal life in order to pursue a deeper relationship with Claire. This undermines the suspense that crime fiction requires, and the novel is overlong by more than half. Although some characters are quite lively, most of them (including Doug) are not very sympathetic, and the end brings tragedy for many of them. All the same, the author's original writing style and knack for unusual metaphors can make for engaging reading, and the book's cinematic quality and grittily realistic action sequences bode well for its day on screen (it's been optioned by Law & Order producer Dick Wolf).
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* If Blood Artists (1998) was a weak follow-up to his crackling 1995 debut Standoff, Hogan is back on track in this moody, resonant thriller that cleverly begins and ends in the same place. Doug, Dez, Jem, and Gloansy have been tight since childhood, growing up tough and street-smart in a rough, working-class Irish enclave where "bringing home the bacon" means stealing it from a local bank. Like his father, Doug is a thief, planning ever more sophisticated gigs for his buddies--as much for the high as for the money. The local bank should have been a piece of cake, but Doug's falling in love with bank manager Claire Keesey wasn't part of the plan. Nor did Doug expect a romantic adversary in the person of robbery investigator Adam Frawley. It's not entirely clear why both men fall for Claire, who's barely on stage. But there's no doubt about Hogan's ability to blend weighty emotions with riveting shoot-outs as he depicts a complicated man, noble and villainous by turns, trapped in a life he desperately wants to change. Stephanie Zvirin
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 364 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; First Edition edition (August 10, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 074326455X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743264556
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,229,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A couple of years ago I picked up Hogan's debut-novel The Standoff and put is away after 150 pages because it was just plain boring and unbelievable. After that I tried again with The Blood Artists because of its interesting premise, but this time I also lost interest very quickly and decided that Hogan just wasn't it for me. But two weeks ago I found myself at Logan Airport in Boston when Prince of Thieves had just hit the stands. Because of its interesting storyline, the glowing reviews by King, Deaver and McBain and especially the fact that the story took place in Boston (which I had just visited) I bought the book on a whim and never regretted it!

Prince of Thieves is not your typical action thriller but a wonderful psychological profile of some very disturbed young men. It describes wonderfully how the protagonist tries to get out of a criminal life because of the love for a woman (that he met during his last criminal caper). The internal struggle he goes through is very believable and presents a wonderful perspective on human nature.

All in all, a very satisfying story that rises far above the numerous summer beach thrillers. I have no doubt that the story of Doug and his friends will stay with me for a long time (and that's a compliment coming from someone who reads app. 100 books a year). Wonderful book, Chuck, and I will definitely keep my eye open for your next one!!!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
i picked up this book at the local borders just looking for aomething to read to pass the time. after about 100 pages of reading this book i started to realize that i loved this book. and it is easily in my top 5 favorite books. the author paints a picture of a town of robbers that just seems so real. it was a terrific story and terrific ending, with a great twist. i recommend to everyone.
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Format: Paperback
I won't go into detail on what this book is about, since other reviewers have done so. An excellent read. If you like Dennis LaHane you're gonna love this one. One of those books I didn't want to finish it was so good.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an awesome book that has a inivative plot line of a professional bank robber whos attention is captured by a hostige during a "job". Unable to shake her from his thoughts, Doug begins to fall for her while trying to dodge a FBI Agent that is hot on his tail. The story explores the different characters stories allong with the struggles that they face both with others and within themselves. This book was a fast and highly enjoyable read that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys reading!
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Format: Paperback
I cannot say enough about this book...and the author, Chuck Hogan. The book grabs your attention from the very beginning and brings you in. Very well written. This is a book that will stay with you for a very long time, feeling like you have lost some friends when you are done.
I am glad to see he has finally come out with some more books! If you are even thinking about getting this book- grab it with both hands!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved this book.....its about 4 local boys, not the brightest bulbs in the pack, who are bank robbers. One of the four has given up alcohol and suprise suprise he seems to be making some "better" choices.....however one of his better choices might not have been to fall in love with a bank manager, in fact the bank manager of one of the banks they just robbed and they had taken this woman hostage......great story line
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Format: Audio Cassette
Very good audio book! Always love stories about good guys trying to get out of bad situations. I am not sure if this was based on a true story or not, but it is a very clever robbery story.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Chuck Hogan writes sooo well, he draws me into the story and I'm 'there' with these characters, even if, with some of them, I'd rather not. :-) This is a book I'll keep on my shelf and reread every few years, it's THAT GOOD!
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