DIAMOND KILL by Michael Brett


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The economics of a heist that cleans out New York's block-long 47th Street diamond exchange--every store on the block hit simultaneously at high noon on a traffic-clogged Friday. Impossible? The way Brett tells it, it's as logical as D-day, when Harry Brenner (who has to raise at least 140 million pronto or have his family wiped out by Mafiosi who blame him for the loss of mucho heroin) imports a batch of out-of-state muscle and expertise to provide the requisite exploding cars, blown phones, phony radio broadcasts, Hasidic disguises, and speedy safecrackery. Each of the round-robin conspirators merits a fairly dense background that highlights the social complexities of his station in the underworld--via virtually non-stop low-life dialogues. Brett seems almost to revere these creeps, but never fear: crime does not pay in the end (a Dragnetty voice counts the bodies), no matter how systematic, well-paced, and occasionally exciting the crime plotting may be.

Pub Date: June 22nd, 1977
Publisher: Putnam