Absolute Rage

#16 RKT -- ABSOLUTE RAGE -- cover


ABSOLUTE RAGE is Tanenbaum’s 14th legal thriller, and the stakes just keep getting higher.

As the city sizzles under the early summer sun, New York chief assistant D.A. Butch Karp and his family are happily vacationing on Long Island’s north shore. Their reverie changes to horror when they learn that their beachfront neighbors, Rose and Ralph “Red” Heeney — a coal miners’ union leader — have been brutally murdered back in their small home town of McCullensburg, West Virginia.

Irresistible force meets immovable object when the governor appoints Karp special prosecutor to bring justice to the corrupt rural town, its ruthless union boss, and his band of violent henchmen.

Now, Karp finds himself not only searching for the killers, but fighting to protect his own family from an evil that runs as deep as the mines that fuel it.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

The Karps kick the rubes, but don’t emerge unscathed in the 14th installment of the successful Karp/Ciampi series.
As in previous novels, the ball gets rolling with the meddling of the brainy and unstable Marlene Ciampi, who against her better judgment (“Don’t get involved, tattoo it on your forehead, Ciampi!”) falls for a New York neighbor’s sob story about a long-simmering family feud in a West Virginia coal town. The sudden savage murders back in West Virginia of the neighbor and her daughter and her labor-agitator husband bring both Marlene and her husband, Butch Karp, down to the boonies in their legal capacity.
Their teenage daughter, nun-in-training Lucy, falls hard for the neighbor’s son, and the Karp’s 10-year-old twins, Zik and Zak, now growing into distinct personalities, come along for the ride. As in other novels in the series, Marlene’s antics bring danger to her family’s doorstep, and beyond this time, resulting in a real Karp family tragedy.
When disaster strikes, the ever volatile Marlene goes over the edge and calls in her trusty Vietnamese thug, Tran, and his gang of gold-hungry goons, with grisly results. While the novel displays Tanenbaum’s trademark humor and adept plotting, the series has definitely taken an ominous twist with this book. Marlene (never a model of sanity) is, per usual, talking to her dogs, but now they’re talking back to her…

From Library Journal

After 14 outings, Chief Assistant DA Butch Karp has his toughest case yet: tracking down the murderer of a teamster who was gunning for union presidency. Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.


The solid characters and taut plotting that have put previous Butch Karp-Marlene Ciampi books at the top of best-seller lists are evident again in Tanenbaum’s latest legal thriller, though this time things start up a bit slower than usual. The action takes former security guard Marlene, now busy training mastiffs, and Karp, assistant district attorney of New York County, on the road.
Marlene travels to rural West Virginia to help a man who has been railroaded for the murder of a coal mine union organizer, and Karp is tapped by the West Virginia governor to break the back of the corrupt company that’s really responsible for the crime. The couple’s children also appear, with college-age Lucy in a pivotal role that tests her Catholic faith. And before it’s all over, Karp, whose faith in the legal system often puts him at odds with his beloved but cynical wife, is faced with a moral quandary that could tear the family apart. Fans won’t be disappointed. Stephanie Zvirin Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved


Los Angeles Times:  ”Absolute Rage is a champion.”The Washington Post:  “Gripping….richly told.”

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