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The Hot Kid

by Elmore Leonard
Performed by Arliss Howard

      At 15 years old, Carlos "Carl" Webster shot his first criminal as he tried to steal Carlos' horses one day. After that fateful day, Carlos decides he wants to be a member of the U.S. Marshall Service. Soon after joining, he becomes known as the "hot kid" and finds himself in deep water when he goes after "Pretty Boy Floyd" and his gang.

At 18, Jack Belmont tried to extort money from his oil tycoon father by trying to blackmail him and, when that didn't work, kidnapping his dad's girlfriend and holding her for ransom. Jack is set on being bigger and better than the likes of "Pretty Boy" and the other "big-time" bank robbers.

Set in the era of 1930's Oklahoma, Leonard has brought to the present day a satirical, humorous look at big-time gangsters, militia groups, and "gun molls". He's also the author of Get Shorty and Be Cool, both of which have been made into movies. I love Leonard's writing style and regardless of some explicit language, Leonard has created yet another masterpiece of humorous violence and hilariously strange dialogue that will titillate the most passive of readers. I won't be surprised if this one ends up as a film, too.

Arliss Howard is a brilliant addition to the tone of this audio book. Using different tones, accents, and voices, Howard brings Leonard's world to life. He has starred in films such as Amistad and Jurassic Park: The Lost World, among others.

The Book

May 1, 2005
Audio book - Unabridged - 8 hours / 7 CDs
Historical Mystery (1930s Oklahoma)
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The Reviewer

Carisa Weeaks
Reviewed 2005
© 2005