Fake Money, Blue Smoke
by Josh Haven
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Pub Date 06 Dec 2022 | Archive Date 30 Nov 2022
Penzler Publishers, Mysterious Press
In the first caper from a "promising new talent" (Publishers Weekly), a skilled counterfeiter hires a crew of career criminals to steal an artwork from a speeding train.
When former platoon sergeant Matt Kubelsky is paroled from Ray Brook Federal Correctional Institute in upstate New York, he’s surprised to find his ex-girlfriend waiting for him out in the parking lot. An ex-girlfriend he’s spent years pining for after she dumped him and stopped answering his letters. An ex-girlfriend who wonders if her apparently criminally-hardened ex-boyfriend can help her out of some extra-legal difficulty of her own.
During the years Matt was in prison, Kelly Haggerty discovered she couldn’t earn a satisfactory living as an artist, so she turned her artistic talents to counterfeiting foreign currency—and ended up embroiled in an international money laundering intrigue. Now she hopes she can get herself out of trouble with a cleverly-plotted theft and one last enormous score.
The missing ingredient is someone Kelly can trust to do the dirty work, recruiting career criminals who won’t flinch at the opportunity to make good money by whatever means necessary. And Matt is happy to oblige, as it seems like the perfect opportunity to settle the score with the men responsible for ruining his life and putting him away for a crime he didn’t commit. The heist—a horseback robbery of valuable artwork from a speeding Amtrak train—seems to be going perfectly, until one of the players starts to suspect he’s been paid in counterfeit bills…
Pulse-pounding suspense, wholly original action scenes, and enough double-crosses to leave readers reeling make this caper a must-read for fans of fast, adrenaline-fueled crime fiction. The first thriller from the author whose seafaring adventure novels are published as J.H. Gelernter, Fake Money, Blue Smoke announces an exciting new voice in the genre.
About the Author: Before publishing his first novel, Josh Haven was an art critic for magazines & newspapers in the US & Europe and an astrogeophysicist who solved the Saturn-Hyperion density/porosity problem. His seafaring adventure novels are published under the name J.H. Gelernter, and Fake Money, Blue Smoke is his first crime novel.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 9 members
An absolutely dynamite mystery/thriller. Wonderfully well written, a narrative that draws you in, and characters you get to know and like.
It's a book with a traditional feel, but it's entirely modern and completely original, too. You'll know what I mean when you read it. I'm willing to bet you've never read anything like it.
I loved every page. Josh Haven is wonderful discovery.
Josh Haven may be my new new favorite writer. This lean , mean , sexy, funny, literate, violent , suspenseful and original crime novel is fantastic. It has a retro vibe that also is modern—hard to describe - but you’ll know it when you read it. I guess the best I can say is that it reads like a modern gold medal paperback frame the fifties. Not too long, fast paced and intelligent. It involves an anti-hero a femme fatale, nazis, the dea and counterfeiting -what more can you ask for. To top it all off Haven writes historical fiction ala Patrick O’ Brian(but more accessible) and has written two such novels under the name of J.H. Gerlenter(sp.?). Those are also fantastic. So he reminds me of Loren Estleman who writes detective novels featuring Amos Walker and historical fiction primarily set in the west. Haven, like Estelman , is a double threat. Read this book now and get in on the start of a great writing career.
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