Cover image for Rich or dead
Rich or dead
Cormany, Michael.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Carol Pub. Group, [1990]

General Note:
"An Irma Heldman book/Birch Lane Press book."
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Reviews 3

Booklist Review

On a strict diet of Kools, cheap liquor, and Valium, private eye Dan Kruger has stumbled through two unusual, flawed, yet entertaining tales. The third has the Chitown sleuth still fueled on various intoxicants, still playing the blues late at night on a Gibson guitar, and still rooting for the White Sox even though he lives next door to Wrigley Field. The trouble starts with a stiff in a cheap hotel and a missing bag of money. The stiff is a Hispanic illegal whose stop-at-nothing sister claims the dough is hers. A local hood who deals in heroin and cut-price illegal workers claims it's his. Enter various lowlifes including a street gang called the Romeo Kings. As in the earlier Kruger novels, Cormany lets his plot wander unleashed for most of the tale, allowing the sleazoid atmosphere to take center stage. It all works fine as a hyperkinetic rush through the ever-venial Windy City, but some variation on the theme may be called for the next time around. --Peter Robertson

Publisher's Weekly Review

Lost Daughter and Red Winter won Cormany raves that will echo for the author's third thriller. The narrator is pill-popping, hard-drinking PI Dan Kruger of Chicago's slums. When Elvia Reyes pays Dan to recover a bag of money she claims her brother Ricardo stole from her, the assignment branches into several increasingly complicated and gory incidents. The investigator finds Ricardo murdered and the money gone, with Elvia affected only by her frantic need to get back the loot, which she herself had stolen in the first place. Prodding Kruger, the tough woman makes him her ally in the hunt. Together they find the elusive treasure in a hair-raising encounter that ends this savagely humorous, racy story about outcasts who arouse compassion, their poverty so all-consuming that it allows no such luxuries as moral standards. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

A decided improvement over Red Winter , this adventure of boozer and pill-popper Dan Kruger, Chicago private investigator, sets him on the trail of missing drug money. Illegal alien Elvia Reyes, secretive and seductive, enlists Kruger's aid in finding her brother, who apparently stole a sack of money from her. Kruger finds the brother--dead--but not the money; from that point on, a puzzling tangle of Mexican street gangs, corrupt cops, ruthless pushers, and crooked politicians test Kruger's reflexes. A less confusing, more interesting plot than before, and Kruger's character seems to have improved just a bit, despite the cluttered landscape. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.