Cover Image: Cradle of the Deep

Cradle of the Deep

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Member Reviews

A fast paced and gripping noir that kept me on the edge till the end.
It's the first I read by this author and won't surely be the last as I loved the well thought and interesting characters, the storytelling and the tightly knitted plot.
Excellent, highly recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
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Is it possible to have a Canadian noir crime romp?  Yes, it is and this is it.  This tale of mismatched thieves and thugs takes you down a rabbit hole of bad behavior but it's actually funny in spots.  Bobbi  and Denny have taken off with Mad Dog's money and he's angry (to put it mildly).  He sends Lee Trane after them to take it back, among other things.  Where this shines is when these three find themselves out of their normal environment- none of them knows about the wilderness (for want of a better word) but all of them are determined to best the others.  No spoilers.  Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.  This would make a great movie.
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Getting into bed with the wrong guy can get you killed

Wanting to free herself from her boyfriend, aging gangster “Maddog” Palmieri, Bobbi Ricci concocts a misguided plan with Denny, Maddog’s ex-driver, a guy who’s bent on getting even with the gangster for the humiliating way in which he was sacked.

Helping themselves to the gangster’s secret money stash, along with his Cadillac, Bobbi and Denny slip out of town, expecting to lay low for a while before enjoying the spoils.

Realizing he’s been betrayed, an enraged Maddog calls in stone-cold killer Lee Trane. As Trane picks up their trail, plans quickly change for Bobbi and Denny, who now find themselves on a wild chase of misadventure through northern British Columbia and into Alaska. 

Time is running out for them once they find out that Trane’s been sent to do away with them, or worse, bring them back — either way, Maddog will make them pay.
My take....

A momentary bright spark in the thus far abysmal year of 2020. Cradle of the Deep is the eighth book from Dietrich Kalteis and the seventh one from him that has pretty much knocked my socks off. Why not the perfect eight? There's one I haven't yet read.

Kalteis writes about the kind of characters I like reading about.... criminals, chancers, low-lifes, mob guys, hangers-on, wannabe toughs, musicians, addicts, bartenders, strippers and the like - all interesting people, all mostly suffering fall out from either bad luck or no luck allied with poor choices and a lack of impulse control.

Here we have an aging mob guy, ripped off by his disaffected younger girlfriend, Bobbi on the same night as a disgruntled former employee and draft dodger, Denny decides to burglarize the mobster for some reparations. 

Working in tandem, through circumstance albeit with little trust between the pair, the twosome go on the run with a couple of suitcases full of cash and after a short interval, with a hitman dogging their trail.

It's a cracking drama, chock-full of incident, with plenty of bounce in the fluctuating relationship between Bobbi and Denny - our two fugitives. 

Seeking sanctuary and holed up, they cross paths with some local police who has pegged them for stealing his cop car and inflicting further embarassment on his reputation. Its another red flag which automatically marks them out to the inquisitive residents of the small isolated community; all wondering about the strange newcomers in town and the secrets concealed in the truck of their car. Our not so dynamic duo are skating on thin ice, literally and figuratively. 

Along the way we hear about the Vietnam War on a personal level - grief and loss - and a refusal to be the next one in the meat grinder and we have a bit on women's rights and bra-waving. Along with the music and groups of the day as a further back-drop it's very firmly set in the 70s. What's not to like?

Pace, plot, characters, settings, action, humor, conflict, and a satisfying resolution. Big ticks in all the boxes. Roll on 2021 and hopefully number nine from one of my favourite authors.

4.5 from 5

Previously enjoyed..... Ride the Lightning, The Deadbeat Club, Triggerfish, Zero Avenue, Poughkeepsie Shuffle and Call Down the Thunder 

Read - October, 2020
Published - 2020 (3rd November)
Page count - 309
Source - Net Galley
Format - EPUB read on laptop
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Thank you netgalley for the eARC of this book. It was fast past and kept me on the edge of my seat.  Couldn't put it down. Definitely recommend this read!
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Elmore Leonard fans should rejoice. We have a high octane crime writer is a lot a like but with his own tone and characters that any crime fiction fan will love. Dietrich has fast become a go to read. Enjoy.
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Thank you NetGalley for the ARC.
I’ve read Dietrich Kalteis before so I had some idea of what to expect and I certainly wasn’t disappointed with Cradle Of The Deep. Like Elmore Leonard, his books deal with criminality, in other words how far you’d push the envelope to make money, preferably while staying alive and out of prison. Always chock full of colorful characters, here we have Bobbi Ricci and Denny Barrenko , mistress and chauffeur of known mobster and all around sleazeball Tomasino Alonzo Palmieri ( AKA Lonzo ), who decide separately but at the same time to take a half million bucks of Lonzo’s get away cash. Awkwardly the heist goes down, and Bobbi and Denny find themselves thrown together and on the run from Lonzo’s thug enforcers. The chase leads to the woods of Western Canada and meeting up with a cast of characters straight out of Fargo. Proving we all have a little larceny in us and the line between good bad guys and bad bad guys is very fine, Cradle Of The Deep is a well written romp of a book.
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Jackpot!  If you are in the mood for tough, hard-nosed Canadian crime fiction, Cradle if the Deep delivers. Bobbi has had it with Lonzo, the local crime boss.  He was a powerhouse when she met him, a leader of men.  Now he bores the crap out of her and she has reached her limit.  Denny, a Californian and a long haired draft dodger also has a plan to get even with his ex boss.  This is an odd couple pairing that has them on the run through the cold Yukon with a pair of suitcases full of money, no plan, no idea, and a determined killing machine, Lee Trane, hot on their heels.  Step by step, Bobbi and Denny leave civilization and head off into the wilderness and have no idea whatsoever how they are getting out of this tightening vice.  Great pace, well-developed characters, and a great sense of humor make this a crime novel to read.
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