Thursday, January 17, 2013

GOOD BEHAVIOR by Donald E. Westlake

If there is a funnier Dortmunder novel than Donald E. Westlake’s Good Behavior, I’d like to read it. This book was hilarious.

Escaping from a busted heist, Dortmunder falls through a skylight into a cloistered nunnery. The nuns don’t speak except on Thursdays. But they know a good thing when they see it. Using sign language, they bribe Dortmunder. They tell him they won’t turn him in to the police (who are just outside) if he will rescue a nun whose father kidnapped her. What can Dortmunder do?

The problem is that the father is a mob boss-type. He has a fortress for a building.

The kidnapped nun herself gets Dortmunder the wiring schematics for the building. Dortmunder puts together a group to rob the upscale stores in the building while Dortmunder rescues the nun.

Of course, it can’t be that simple. The father is in the midst of planning a revolution in a small country whose local dictator has irritated him. Dortmunder walks into a situation in which there are 60 brutal armed mercenaries in the father’s section of the building.

As you might guess, the nun and another unlikely woman accomplice save Dortmunder from being cut in two by automatic rifle fire.

There’s more to the whole story, but that’s enough for you to get the flavor.

As I said, if there’s a funnier Dortmunder book than this one, I’d like to know about it. 


Evan Lewis said...

Good funny mysteries are hard to find. I'll have to watch for this one.

Naomi Johnson said...

GOOD BEHAVIOR is definitely one of the best in the series. I love the scene where Dortmunder hides in the dishwasher. My personal favorite is a toss-up between DROWNED HOPES and WHAT'S THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN? The latter though requires that the reader be quite familiar with Dortmunder in order for the humor to have its greatest impact.

Joe Barone said...

Evan, good humorous mysteries are hard to find. Westlake's Dortmunder series has to be among the best.

Naomi, Thanks for the titles. I have put them on my list.