Thoughts on books, often interpreted through the high-brow prism of cartoon (read: Archer) references. Wait! I had something for this...
Even after taking the fall, after doing a bit in the big house (San Quentin aka Q, to be specific), it's hard for a born confidence man to keep it on the straight and narrow. That's not to say that our man, Johnny Hayden isn't trying. But, giving up the grift is never easy.
The ingredients are nothing new—they never really are. Johnny, working the night shift at a bowling alley, pinching pennies like your average rube, is approached by a friend from the past pitching Johnny the classic plea to help him out with one last job. The foundation work's been laid, and the mark (flush with vanity, greed and overconfidence in himself) is perfect for the picking.
The stages of the con are still the same, but each job is different nonetheless, and Lawrence Block knows how to dish each act out at the perfect pace. The reader is like the shill, playing the bit part, watching the evolution with a mix of anticipation and dread, and loving every moment.