Thursday, May 30, 2013

#19: The Thief by Fuminori Nakamura

A Tokyo pickpocket gets involved in a gang of thieves to help an old friend and mentor, not realizing the life-and-death stakes at hand, in Fuminori Nakamura's creepy noir The Thief.  Along the way he ends up befriending a child pickpocket and tries to keep him off the same path.

Although on the surface The Thief is a pretty straightforward crime novel, there is an unsettling air about the proceedings, everything clammy and slick with sweat, dark and rainy and cold.  With its constant grinding on of the machine of Fate, the novel actually reads like something between Richard Stark and Albert Camus.

I picked this up without knowing anything about it at the Morrisson-Reeves Public Library in Richmond, Indiana and read it quickly.  I have already recommended it to a few others but would say it is for anyone who likes a more offbeat crime story.

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