Author: Elmore Leonard
Pages: 283 pp
Published Date: 1983
Publisher: Arbor House
LaBrava was awarded the 1984 Edgar Award for Best Mystery.
Joe La Brava is an ex-Secret Service agent who gets mixed up in a South Miami Beach scam involving a redneck former cop, a Cuban hit man who moonlights as a go-go dancer, and a one-time movie queen whose world is part make-believe, part deadly dangerous. This is vintage Leonard: fast-moving, pitch-perfect, and utterly, authentically irresistible.
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You will find reviews of LaBrava at the following websites.
Amazon.com: "La Brava in some ways was a bit of a departure for Leonard. His protagonist Joe LaBrava is not only fairly likeable, but is also working at a legitimate profession. Joe LaBrava is an independent photographer who has started his life over again in South Miami Beach. He likes his life and likes where he is." Read the Amazon.com reviews here
King of the Nerds: "I found LaBrava an enjoyable read if not as immediately engaging as some of my previous experiences so far. The dialogue is interesting though bounces back from somewhat mundane to showing a true creative flair. Where the story shines is in the cast of oddball characters that seem to hover around the plot itself" Read full review
Epinions: "The plot also has a fair amount of complexity, with the whole situation unfolding gradually, to reveal some genuine surprises. The pace of the writing, though, is a bit uneven." Read full review
Library Thing: "LaBrava is vintage Leonard: a blend of the true-to-life and the totally make-believe, the cinematic and the suspenseful, the world we know and a whole lot of worlds we're glad we don't. Only Leonard can concoct such a potent cocktail." Read full review here
O'Hara's Book Reviews: "LaBrava ranks among the best of the Leonard novels that I've read. The dialogue sizzles, the characters pop and the plot is a coherent, twisty thrill ride. As always, Leonard creates a world and a prose style so vivid and unique that it could only be his own." Read full review here
The entire Elmore Leonard back catalog can be found on the Elmore Leonard page