Magazine article The Spectator

BOOKENDS A Network of Kidney-Nappers

Magazine article The Spectator

BOOKENDS A Network of Kidney-Nappers

Article excerpt

Raylan Givens, an ace detective in the Raymond Chandler mould, has encountered just about every shakedown artist and palooka in his native East Kentucky. His creator, Elmore Leonard, is a maestro of American noir; Raylan (Weidenfeld, £18.99), his latest thriller, presents a familiar impasto of choppy, street-savvy slang and hip-jive patter that verges on a kind of poetry.

Typically, Raylan cha r t s a mu rky underworld where criminals are in cahoots with politicians, and where murder is a consequence of this corruption. In his curl-toed cowboy boots, Federal Marshal Givens is summoned to investigate a case of trafficking in human body-parts.

A man has been found moribund in a bathtub with his kidneys apparently removed by surgery.

Suspicion falls on Pervis 'Speed' Crowe, a 70-year-old marijuana dealer, and his two layabout stoner sons. …

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