Peter Leonard showed remarkable maturity for a first-time novelist in his debut novel Quiver. In Trust Me, he reaches for new heights as he crafts a classic noir thriller loaded with double- and triple-crosses.
The first mistake Karen Delaney made was entrusting $300,000 to her boyfriend, Samir, the head of an illegal bookmaking operation. The second was breaking up with him---because Samir holds a $300,000 grudge. A few months later, Karen sees a way to get her money back when two thieves break into her house in the middle of the night. She proposes a scheme to steal Samir's safe, but Karen soon realizes she's in way over her head as things begin to spin out of control.
Trust Me moves at breakneck speed through the affluent suburbs of Detroit and Chicago as Karen is pursued by O'Clair, an ex-con/ex-cop who works for Samir and wants the money for his own retirement; by Ricky, Samir's nephew, who sees the money as a way to pay off his own escalating gambling debts; by the thieves who've been double-crossed; and by two ruthless hit men who view the money as their stake in the American dream.
With relentless suspense, striking characters, and plot twists that will leave you white-knuckled, Trust Me marks the continuation of a powerful new voice in crime fiction and more than delivers on the promise of Peter Leonard's talent.
Leonard's less than stellar second caper novel, with its Detroit setting, wacky characters and elaborate schemes that misfire, may strike Elmore Leonard fans as too derivative of his father's work. When two thieves, Bobby and Lloyd, break into the house of Karen Delaney, a knockout with red hair and creamy white skin, she manages to enlist the pair in a plot to rob her bookmaker ex-boyfriend, Samir Fakir, who has $300,000 of hers that he kept at the time he threw her out. The robbery goes off, but not without fatal hitches. Karen must scramble out of harm's way as Bobby and Lloyd, a bunch of Fakir's eager debt collectors, grasping relatives, Arab hit men and a stubborn ex-cop who's also an ex-con pursue her and the money. While Leonard (Quiver) has a ways to go before he approaches his father's high standard, he keeps Karen and the action rolling along nicely enough with occasional chuckles and mild surprises.