Red Means Run by Brad Smith

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Young’s fans will recognize “red means run” as a fragment from Powderfinger, and will be left wondering what clues its album, Rust Never Sleeps, might hold to the further misadventures of Virgil Cain...
-Globe and Mail

Synopsis

Brad Smith, a “funny, poignant, evocative” (Dennis Lehane) crime novelist, debuts a new series set in upstate New York featuring jack-of-all trades, Virgil Cain, who must clear his name of two murders while on the run from the law in this spirited country noir.

Mickey Dupree is one of the most successful criminal attorneys in upstate New York, having never lost a capital murder case. That is the upside of being Mickey. The downside: Mickey has a lot of enemies and one of them drives the shaft of a golf club through his heart, leaving him dead in a sand trap at his exclusive country club.

The cops, led by a dim-witted detective named Joe Brady, focus their attentions on Virgil Cain. Just two weeks earlier Virgil told a crowded bar that “somebody ought to blow Mickey’s head off,” after the slippery lawyer earned an acquittal for Alan Comstock, the man accused of murdering Virgil’s wife. Comstock, a legendary record producer, gun nut, and certifiable lunatic, has returned to his estate, where he lives with his wife, the long suffering Jane.

It appears to Virgil that the fix is in when Brady immediately throws him into jail with no questions asked. In order to set things right, Virgil escapes from jail, determined to find Mickey’s killer himself. Aside from a smart and sexy detective named Claire Marchand, everybody is convinced that Virgil is the culprit. When Alan Comstock is discovered with six slugs in his body the day after Virgil’s escape, his guilt is almost assured. Now it is up to Virgil to convince everyone of his innocence—by finding the killer before he winds up as the next victim.
 

About Brad Smith

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Brad Smith was born and raised in southern Ontario. He has worked as a farmer, signalman, insulator, truck driver, bartender, schoolteacher, maintenance mechanic, roofer, and carpenter. He lives in an eighty-year-old farmhouse near the north shore of Lake Erie. His novel, One-Eyed Jacks, was nominated for the Dashiell Hammett Prize.
 
Published January 10, 2012 by Scribner. 322 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Crime. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Red Means Run
All: 3 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 2

National Post arts

Below average
Reviewed by Adam Nayman on Jan 27 2012

...his writing trips up a bit when he tries to inject too much personality. The relentless pop culture references that dot the characters’ conversation...feel imposed on the material rather than indicative of a connection to the real world...

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Globe and Mail

Good
Reviewed by T. F. RIGELHOF on Feb 10 2012

Young’s fans will recognize “red means run” as a fragment from Powderfinger, and will be left wondering what clues its album, Rust Never Sleeps, might hold to the further misadventures of Virgil Cain...

Read Full Review of Red Means Run | See more reviews from Globe and Mail

National Post arts

Above average
Reviewed by Adam Nayman on Jan 27 2012

That Red Means Run evaporates almost instantly on contact may not be a good omen for Smith’s plan to bring Cain back for more adventures, but there’s something to be said for fleeting pleasures, and Red Means Run is an exercise in velocity — a fastball right down the middle.

Read Full Review of Red Means Run | See more reviews from National Post arts

Reader Rating for Red Means Run
77%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 13 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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