Cover image for In an evil time
In an evil time
Pronzini, Bill.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Walker & Co., [2001]

Physical Description:
266 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
X Adult Fiction Popular Materials-Mystery
X Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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Jack Hollis had finally steeled himself for what had to be done, the murder of his daughter Angela's husband, David Rakubian. Rakubian was vicious, abusive, deadly, and powerful, and everyone Hollis knew and loved wanted to save Angela from him. After his first attempt failed because Rakubian didn't come home, Hollis put together a foolproof plan. He'd lure Rakubian to his grave with the promise of seeing Angela. It would work: an isolated place, the body easily disposed of, perfect alibis. There was just one problem: The target didn't show.

And when Hollis went to Rakubian's house and found his body, he didn't know who he had to protect. There were too many people among his friends and family who wanted Rakubian dead, and no one was saying a word.

Bill Pronzini, the award-winning author such highly praised thrillers as Nothing but the Night, takes us into the heart and soul of a man pushed to his limits and then beyond them as he fights, first for his daughter and then for his family and his own salvation. With the twists in plot that Pronzini's fans have come to expect, and the author's incisive understanding of the motivations

Author Notes

Bill Pronzini was born in Petaluma, California on April 13, 1943. His first novel, The Stalker, was published in 1971. He is best known for his creation of the Nameless Detective Mystery series, as well as several westerns and novels of dark suspense. He has been a full time writer since 1969. He is also an active anthologist, having compiled more than 100 collections, most of which focus on mystery, western, and science fiction short stories.

He has won numerous awards including three Shamus Awards and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Private Eye Mystery Writers of America. His book Snowbound received the Grand Prix de la Litterature Policiere, as the best crime novel published in France in 1988. Pronzini has established himself as a master of the Western novel as well as earning a name for himself in the dark fiction genre.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Jack Hollis, a family man and law-abiding citizen, is ready to cross the line. His daughter, Angela, is being stalked by her abusive second husband, David Rakubian, a successful personal-injury lawyer in San Francisco. In fact, it's Rakubian's knowledge of the law's limitations that makes him so dangerous to Angela and her toddler son. Jack has weighed the options and sees Rakubian's death as the only way out for his daughter. Jack arranges a meeting at Rakubian's home, but when he arrives, Rakubian has already been killed. Convinced his son, Eric, is the killer, Jack cleans up the scene and disposes of the body. Jack later learns that Eric wasn't the killer. So who was? The question becomes more germane when an anonymous note arrives asking Jack where he hid the body. Pronzini, a prolific author and literary craftsman, has fashioned a nail-biter out of the issue of domestic abuse and the law's inability to deal with it effectively. The tension is almost unbearable at times, and the conclusion is a very logical surprise. Wes Lukowsky

Publisher's Weekly Review

A cancer-stricken father goes head-to-head with his daughter's abusive ex-husband in this sturdy, rewarding thriller by veteran Pronzini. Angela Hollis thinks she has escaped her obsessed second husband, David Rakubian, when she wins a divorce settlement and refuses any award. Rakubian, a piranha trial lawyer, refuses to recognize the divorce anyway and threatens Angela and Kenny, her young son from her first marriage, with death if they do not return to him. Angela's father, Jack Hollis, a successful architect just diagnosed with prostate cancer, decides the only way to guarantee Angela's safety is to kill Rakubian himself. Secretly working out a murder plan, Jack persuades Rakubian that Angela will come back to him and gets him to agree to a meeting. When Rakubian doesn't show, Hollis goes to his exclusive neighborhood and finds his body in the dining room, his skull bashed in by a statue of Poe's raven. Who beat Jack to the punch? His estranged and volatile son, Eric? His business partner, Gabe Mannix, long in love with Angela himself? Angela's cowboy first husband? Or had Angela herself finally had enough? Death threats further unsettle the would-be murderer, and the terror builds to a climax when Kenny is kidnapped at gunpoint. Pronzini (Nothing but the Night) deftly explores the dynamics of a family in crisis, protecting its own while fending off threats from within and without. The San Francisco-area setting lends the right atmosphere, and PI Sharon McCone, the creation of Pronzini's mystery author wife, Marcia Muller, makes a cameo appearance. The reader may guess the culprit long before disclosure and Jack's impulsive conclusions on scant evidence occasionally annoy, but Pronzini pulls out all the stops as he builds up to a very tricky ending. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved