A Burke Novel
By Andrew Vachss
(Vintage, Paperback, 9781400076116, 304pp.)
Publication Date: April 12, 2005
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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For years Burke has harbored an outlaw's hard love for Wolfe, the beautiful, driven former sex-crimes prosecutor who was fired for refusing to "go along to get along." So when Wolfe is arrested for the attempted murder of John Anson Wychek, a vicious rapist she once prosecuted, Burke deals himself in. That means putting together a distrustful alliance between his underground "family of choice," Wolfe's private network, and a rogue NYPD detective who has his own stake in the outcome.
Burke knows that Wolfe’s alleged "victim," although convicted only once, is actually a serial rapist. The deeper he presses, the more gaping holes he finds in the prosecution’s case, but shadowy law enforcement agencies seem determined to protect Wychek at all costs, no matter who it sacrifices. Burke ups the ante by re-opening all the old "cold case” rape investigations, calls in a lot of markers from both sides of the law, and finally shows all the players why "down here" is no place for tourists.
Andrew Vachss has been a federal investigator in sexually transmitted diseases, a social services caseworker, and a labor organizer, and has directed a maximum-security prison for youthful offenders. Now a lawyer in private practice, he represents children and youths exclusively. He is the author of numerous novels, including the Burke series, two collections of short stories, and a wide variety of other material including song lyrics, graphic novels, and a "children's book for adults." His books have been translated into twenty languages and his work has appeared in Parade, Antaeus, Esquire, Playboy, the New York Times, and numerous other forums. A native New Yorker, he now divides his time between the city of his birth and the Pacific Northwest.
The dedicated Web site for Vachss and his work is www.vachss.com.
“Many writers try to cover the same ground as Vachss. A handful are as good. None are better.” –People
"His greatest literary accomplishment to date and his most powerful statement yet on the choice between good and evil." --The Jackson Sun
“Starting a Vachss novel is like putting a vial of nitroglycerin into your pocket and going for a jog. You just know things are going to get interesting. Usually sooner rather than later.” – Rocky Mountain News
“Vachss’s writing is like a dark rollercoaster ride of fear, love and hate.” – The New-Orleans Times-Picayune
“Vachss’s writing remains raw and hungry, with an epidermis of rage barely containing an infinite core of sadness.” –The Seattle Times
"Sheer narrative drive is only part of what has kept readers coming back for more. . . . [Burke] is a hero of our times . . . lord of the asphalt jungle." --Washington Post Book World
"Vachss's style is personal, laconic, shaded and, of course, creepy. If you like hard-boiled punk narrative, this is a read for you." --Los Angeles Times Book Review
"The Burke books make the noir-film genre look practically pastel. . . . The plot-driven stories churn with energy and a memorable gallery of the walking wounded." --The Philadelphia Inquirer
"There's no way to put a [Vachss book] down once you've begun. . . . The plot hooks are engaging and the one-liners pierce like bullets." --Detroit Free Press
"Andrew Vachss continues to write the most provocative novels around. . . . It is difficult to write about a burning social issue and still keep the story at white heat, but Andrew Vachss does it seamlessly." --Martha Grimes
"The New York Burke inhabits is not borrowed from anybody and shimmers on the page as gaudily and scarily as it does on the streets." --New York magazine
“Down Here is tautly written...ultimately triumphant. Burke is the uncrowned king of the lawless good guys, and Down Here will advance his legend.” –Bookpage
"Addictive. . . . A [book] no student of the human condition will want to ignore." --Huntsville Times