A Burke Novel
By Andrew Vachss
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780679772934, 240pp.)
Publication Date: October 28, 1997
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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Burke--ex-con, mercenary, sometime killer--makes his living preying on New York's most vicious predators and avenging their innocent victims. But in Andrew Vachss's mercilessly suspenseful new novel, Burke finds himself working the other side of the street, where guilt and innocence are as disposable as the sheets in a Times Square hotel--and as dirty.
Burke's new employer is Kite, a fanatical crusader who specializes in debunking "false allegations of child sexual abuse. Kite has a case that may be the real thing, but needs Burke to tell him if it is. And if mere money can't persuade Burke to cooperate, Kite has plenty of other incentives at his disposal--including a fanatical bodyguard with a taste for corsets and brass knuckles. A tour guide to hell written in icy prose, False Allegations is Vachss at his most unnerving.
Andrew Vachss, an attorney in private practice specializing in juvenile justice and child abuse, is the country’s best recognized and most widely sought after spokesperson on crimes against children. He is also a bestselling novelist and short story writer, whose works include Flood (1985), the novel which first introduced Vachss’ series character Burke, Strega (1987), Choice of Evil (1999), and Dead and Gone (2000). His short stories have appeared in Esquire, Playboy, and The Observer, and he is a contributor to ABA Journal, Journal of Psychohistory, New England Law Review, The New York Times, and Parade.
Vachss has worked as a federal investigator in sexually transmitted diseases, a caseworker in New York, and a professional organizer. He was the director of an urban migrants re-entry center in Chicago and another for ex-cons in Boston. After managing a maximum-security prison for violent juvenile offenders, he published his first book, a textbook, about the experience. He was also deeply involved in the relief effort in Biafra, now Nigeria.
For ten years, Vachss’ law practice combined criminal defense with child protection, until, with the success of his novels, it segued exclusively into the latter, which is his passion. Vachss calls the child protective movement “a war,” and considers his writing as powerful a weapon as his litigation.
"In the first rank of American crime writers. . . . Next to Vachss, Chandler, Cain and Hammett look like choirboys."
-Cleveland Plain Dealer
"Burke is the toughest talking first-person narrator since Mike Hammer."
-Los Angeles Times
"Vachss . . . writes hypnotically violent prose."
"Burke prowls the city with a seething, angry, almost psychotic voice appropriate to the devils he deals with."-Chicago Tribune