by Andrew Vachss
In the figure of Burke, Andrew Vachss has given contemporary crime fiction one of its most mesmerizing characters. An abused child raised in orphanages, foster homes, and prisons, Burke is a career criminal and outlaw who steals and scams for a living. But he draws the line at the psychopaths and predators who stalk children. Sometimes he draws that line in blood.
In Blossom, an old cellmate has summoned Burke to a fading Indiana mill town, where a young boy is charged with a crime he didn't commit and a twisted serial sniper has turned a local lover's lane into a killing field. And it's here that Burke meets Blossom, the brilliant, beautiful young woman who has her own reasons for finding the murderer—and her own idea of vengeance. Dense with atmosphere, savagely convincing, this is Vachss at his uncompromising best.
"Brilliant . . . Burke is a creature you can't spend enough time with [and] Vachss, sculpting pieces of art out of the scummiest wastes of humanity, must be read."
"Burke is an unlikely combination of Sherlock Holmes, Robin Hood, and Rambo . . . Vachss' stories burn with righteous rage."
—Washington Post Book World
"A contemporary master. . . Decidedly hard-boiled, his prose is lean, tough-edged and brittle."
"Gritty, frightening, compelling and ultimately satisfying."
—Cleveland Plain Dealer
Knopf, 1990 (hardcover)
(mass market paperback)