Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Buy Back-Brian Wiprud

Buy Back
Brian Wiprud
Minotaur, Jun 8 2010, $24.99
ISBN: 9780312601881

Insurance companies hire recovery expert Tommy Davin to retrieve stolen property; usually the Brooklyn native pays a small fee to the thief enabling the insurance company to receive the item without having to pay out full value.

Tommy has some debt problems since his girlfriend Yvette left for Vegas leaving him with her IOUs to Vince Scanlon. He knows he better pay Vince off even though it is not his debt as Vince believes in extended definitions of relationships when it comes to breaking body parts. Tommy persuades three buddies led by Huey to steal three paintings from the Whitbread Museum so he can collect the recovery fee from the insurance company. The plan works, but as his pals leave the museum with the art, they are mugged by two thugs with guns; the paintings are stolen from Tommy’s thieves. NYPD suspects Tommy is the mastermind while Vince wants his money now. Finally there is the insane Russian who obsesses over Yvette by stealing her abandoned cats.

Brooklyn is becoming too hot for Tommy as he plays dodge ball .with a “debt” collecting mob, the cops, and the cat thieve; the first is deadly; the second is a lock up; but the third is bewildering. All this insanity goes on while he seeks the thieves who stole from his thieves. Buy Back is a superb amusing over the top of the Brooklyn Bridge crime cape in which readers will expect Elmore Leonard to show up.

Harriet Klausner

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