cogan's trade

Crime and mystery are not the genres I like most, but this book was translated into Spanish for the first time when the film was released a few months ago and it caught my attention. The Spanish publisher Libros del Asteroide has been translating a lot of American authors of the twentieth century, like Wallace Stegner, Jetta Carleton or Norman Maclean, and I have read and enjoyed some of them, I also wanted to try George V. Higgins.

The story is set in Boston, in the 1970s and starts with a great plan: Amato is looking for two men to rob in an illegal poker game. He can’t do it himself because the mafias know him, so he finally finds two poor devils that are looking for easy cash.

They break in in the middle of the game, take the money and develop a plan to blame another gangster who carried out exactly the same robbery as theirs years ago, but the mafia doesn’t believe he is stupid enough to do this twice, so they call a man to solve the problem: Cogan. Cogan knows how to do a great job.

my copy of the book

my copy of the book

Every chapter is a dialogue between two or three characters, and the reader knows step by step what the gangsters are doing and at the same time how Cogan is planning to catch them. These men only wanted the money to start a new life out of the suburbs with their families and, above all, don’t go back to jail, even though during the reading I thought that was exactly what they were trying to achieve.

Good dialogues, great characters from the outskirts of Boston, rude language and a fantastic development of the plot thanks to Cogan, who is really good at his business.

rakin4My review in Spanish here.