The Big Silence - Stuart M. Kaminsky - ebook

The Big Silence ebook

Stuart M. Kaminsky

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Opis

When a witness's son is kidnapped, Chicago's gangland erupts into chaos. Once a college football star, Bill Hanrahan has had a hard time of it ever since his bad knees kept him out of the pros. He became a homicide detective with the unfortunate reputation of losing witnesses and loving the bottle. Now Hanrahan is off the sauce, and working a job that should be straightforward: He's guarding a mob informant's ex-wife and teenage son while they tour colleges. Everything is fine until the last night of their trip. At three in the morning, Hanrahan hears shots from their motel room. By the time he breaks down the door, it's too late. The woman is dead, the boy has been kidnapped, and Hanrahan wants a drink more than he ever has before. The mob issues a simple instruction to the informant: Kill yourself and your son lives. Hanrahan and his partner, Abe Lieberman, tear the city apart in search of the kid, hoping against hope that for once they will be able to keep both witnesses alive. About the Author. Stuart M. Kaminsky (1934-2009) was one of the most prolific crime fiction authors of the last four decades. Born in Chicago, he spent his youth immersed in pulp fiction and classic cinema - two forms of popular entertainment which he would make his life's work. After college and a stint in the army, Kaminsky wrote film criticism and biographies of the great actors and directors of Hollywood's Golden Age. In 1977, when a planned biography of Charlton Heston fell through, Kaminsky wrote Bullet for a Star, his first Toby Peters novel, beginning a fiction career that would last the rest of his life. Kaminsky penned twenty-four novels starring the detective, whom he described as "the anti-Philip Marlowe." In 1981's Death of a Dissident, Kaminsky debuted Moscow police detective Porfiry Rostnikov, whose stories were praised for their accurate depiction of Soviet life. His other two series starred Abe Lieberman, a hardened Chicago cop, and Lew Fonseca, a process server. In all, Kaminsky wrote more than sixty novels. He died in St. Louis in 2009. Review quote. "Kaminsky stands out as a subtle historian, unobtrusively but entertainingly weaving into the story itself what people were wearing, eating, driving, and listening to on the radio. A page-turning romp." - Booklist. "For anyone with a taste for old Hollywood B-movie mysteries, Edgar winner Kaminsky offers plenty of nostalgic fun . . . The tone is light, the pace brisk, the tongue firmly in cheek." - Publishers Weekly. "Marvelously entertaining." - Newsday. "Makes the totally wacky possible . . . Peters [is] an unblemished delight." - Washington Post. "The Ed McBain of Mother Russia." - Kirkus Reviews.

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Contents

Cover

About the Book

About the Author

Title Page

Copyright Page

Dedication

Epigraph

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

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Cover

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About the Book

When a witness’s son is kidnapped, Chicago’s gangland erupts into chaos.

Once a college football star, Bill Hanrahan has had a hard time of it ever since his bad knees kept him out of the pros. He became a homicide detective with the unfortunate reputation of losing witnesses and loving the bottle. Now Hanrahan is off the sauce, and working a job that should be straightforward: He’s guarding a mob informant’s ex-wife and teenage son while they tour colleges. Everything is fine until the last night of their trip. At three in the morning, Hanrahan hears shots from their motel room. By the time he breaks down the door, it’s too late. The woman is dead, the boy has been kidnapped, and Hanrahan wants a drink more than he ever has before.

The mob issues a simple instruction to the informant: Kill yourself and your son lives. Hanrahan and his partner, Abe Lieberman, tear the city apart in search of the kid, hoping against hope that for once they will be able to keep both witnesses alive.

About the Author

Stuart M. Kaminsky (1934-2009) was one of the most prolific crime fiction authors of the last four decades. Born in Chicago, he spent his youth immersed in pulp fiction and classic cinema - two forms of popular entertainment which he would make his life’s work. After college and a stint in the army, Kaminsky wrote film criticism and biographies of the great actors and directors of Hollywood’s Golden Age. In 1977, when a planned biography of Charlton Heston fell through, Kaminsky wrote Bullet for a Star, his first Toby Peters novel, beginning a fiction career that would last the rest of his life.

Kaminsky penned twenty-four novels starring the detective, whom he described as “the anti-Philip Marlowe.” In 1981’s Death of a Dissident, Kaminsky debuted Moscow police detective Porfiry Rostnikov, whose stories were praised for their accurate depiction of Soviet life. His other two series starred Abe Lieberman, a hardened Chicago cop, and Lew Fonseca, a process server. In all, Kaminsky wrote more than sixty novels. He died in St. Louis in 2009.

The Big Silence

An Abe Lieberman Mystery

Stuart M. Kaminsky

 

BASTEI ENTERTAINMENT

 

Bastei Entertainment is an imprint of Bastei Lübbe AG

 

Copyright © 2015 by Bastei Lübbe AG, Schanzenstraße 6-20, 51063 Cologne, Germany

 

For the original edition:

Copyright © 2013 by The Mysterious Press, LLC, 58 Warren Street, New York, NY. U.S.A.

 

Copyright © 2000 by Stuart Kaminsky

 

Project management: Lori Herber

Cover adaptation: Christin Wilhelm, www.grafic4u.de

Cover design by Jim Tierney

 

E-book production: Jouve Germany GmbH & Co. KG

 

ISBN 978-3-95859-482-1

 

www.bastei-entertainment.com

 

All rights reserved, including without limitation the right to reproduce this e-book or any portion thereof in any form or by any means, whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of the publisher.

 

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, businesses, companies, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

This one is for Renata and Vern Sawyer.

Vengeance has made its unappeased way with every dart of death and visited your family one by one. And now with eager hand Fate is pursuing you. Your turn has come.

— EURIPEDES, Iphigenia in Tauris

Chapter 1

BILL HANRAHAN HAD BEEN in Cleveland only once before. That was about ten years ago, when he and Maureen were still married. A Cleveland cop, a detective named Morello, had remembered when Bill was a young football hero with bad knees that had kept him out of the pros.

Three decades ago Hardrock Hanrahan had been the fastest lineman on the Chicago Vocational High School football team. Dick Butkus, who had graduated from CVS a few years later, told Bill at a reunion that Hardrock had been an inspiration to him. And then the knee went in a practice game and so did the speed and any chance at Notre Dame or Illinois or even Wisconsin. He lasted two years at Southern Illinois University and managed a Parade magazine second team All-American spot. But the knees wouldn’t hold. He gave up to join his father as a Chicago cop, as his father had joined his grandfather before him.

Morello, who followed college football down to the Division III teams, found out that Hanrahan was passing through to Chicago and had a few hours between planes. Morello, a guy in his late fifties maybe, with lots of dyed too-black hair and the face of a Coke can run over by an eighteen-wheeler, had driven through Cleveland showing Hanrahan the sights, apologizing here, showing pride there. Hanrahan, who had been drinking hard then and hated flying, would have preferred being in the airport bar, but he couldn’t hurt the man’s feelings.

So he had seen Cleveland and had a few drinks on the plane.

Morello was dead now, his name on a plaque. Line of duty. Shot by a sixteen-year-old drug dealer in a stolen car. According to Morello’s partner, the detective’s last word was “son” before the kid in the car shot him in the face. Morello’s partner had shot the kid four times. The kid died. Morello’s partner had faced charges and been put on unpaid leave for sixty days.

Now Detective Bill Hanrahan was back in Cleveland, but he wasn’t going to have time for any sightseeing. His knees were no better but he was sober and meant to stay that way. He had gone to AA after he had let an informant die while he was drunk in a restaurant across from her apartment building. Hanrahan’s partner, Abe Lieberman, had covered for him, but Hanrahan had been a Catholic, a lapsed one to be sure, and guilt was his lot.

A few years later he had seriously considered sliding back to the bottle when he killed a young lunatic named Frankie Kraylaw whose wife and child he had been protecting in his house. Hanrahan had set up the lunatic and lured him to the house, knowing that if he had not killed the man, the man would surely have killed the young woman and the boy.

With the help of a young Catholic priest, AA, Iris Chen, and his partner, Abe Lieberman, Bill had slowly, shakily come through it still carrying guilt.

Now the divorce from Maureen was complete and Bill Hanrahan hoped and expected to marry Iris Chen in a few months. He was also slowly and with some caution returning to the church. The assignment he was on was Captain Kearney’s way of giving Hanrahan a few days away from the city, away from the reminders of the past.

It was early October. A bit cold for fall in Ohio. Hanrahan had watched the Weather Channel and was prepared with the zippered lined jacket Iris had given him. The job was simple, even boring.

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