February 08, 2003

The Burglar who Studied Spinoza, by Lawrence Block

Bernie Rhodenbarr books are always good for a couple hours of good, light fun. They follow a basic formula that every book about him I've read so far hasnít deviated from at all. Bernie burgles an apartment. Someone gets murdered. Bernie gets blamed. Bernie has to figure out who did the murder so he doesnít end up in prison. Bernie does and all is well. It's comforting. Block elaborates a little with Bernie's friend, Carolyn, the lesbian owner of a dog washing service just down the road from his bookstore. And there is the woman painter, Denise, and her genius son. And Bernie's "cop on the take", Ray, who's always there to make the final arrest after Bernie figures out who did it. This one is no different, really. Perhaps a little more thoughtful than the others when the fence, Abel Crowe, dies. What I haven't quite figured out is why I like Bernie so much. He's a thief, for goodness sake, albeit an ethical one. He could make a go of his bookstore if he wanted but he likes to steal. And I like reading about him doing it. I have more on the shelf waiting for when I need a good, light read.

Posted by Deb English at February 8, 2003 08:21 PM