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BOOKS

Good Behavior

 

By: Blake Crouch 

Letty Dobesh Books #1-3

ISBN: 9781503940499

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer 

Publication Date: 11/15/2016

Format: Paperback 

My Rating: 5 Stars + + +

Top Books of 2016

Now a television series starring Michelle Dockery.

Fresh out of prison and fighting to keep afloat, Letty Dobesh returns to her old tricks burglarizing suites at a luxury hotel. While on the job, she overhears a man hiring a hit man to kill his wife. Letty may not be winning any morality awards, but even she has limits. Unable to go to the police, Letty sets out to derail the job, putting herself on a collision course with the killer that entangles the two of them in a dangerous, seductive relationship.

 

Good Behavior comprises three interlinked novellas, The Pain of Others , Sunset Key , and Grab , which together form a novel-length portrait of Blake Crouch’s all-time favorite character creation, Letty Dobesh.

 

This edition is the complete Letty Dobesh collection.

 

Buy the Book 

 

My Review

 

A very special thank you to Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley for granting my wish with a review copy.

 

Blake Crouch returns from Wayward Pines The Last Town and Dark Matter (2016) with his latest smashing hit, GOOD BEHAVIOR The book, audio, TV series- (The Letty Dobesh Chronicles1-3): EPIC! Brilliantly crafted. 

 

Extraordinary from book, audio, to TV on-screen, Landing on my Top Books of 2016, and best 2016 book to screen. The collaboration between Blake Crouch and Chad Hodge is a “match made in heaven.” 

 

Yes, I am enjoying the ride. Please do not let it stop! 

 

Ongoing: “I am the best me I can be!” (Letty) 

 

In the series, Letty is fresh out of prison, (meth-addicted) when she overhears a hitman being hired to kill a man's wife. When she sets out to derail the job, she puts herself in the crosshairs of a killer, entangling them in a dangerous and seductive relationship, and so much more.

 

This sexy hitman man Javier may be her path and key to redemption. That is if she does not screw it up. 

 

Javier is sensitive and caring. He has pain in his life and his past. Leading him to his path as a hitman. They have a love/hate relationship. He lives on the outskirts of society due to an event from his childhood (we discover in the TV series).

 

A constant pull between them as well as their own individual lives. They have a connection and this makes them want to be better. They are perfect for one another. They rescue each other and find a home in one another. 

 

Forgive me here, since I have watched the TV series (Season one Episodes 1-9, read the book, and listened to the audio (twice). You could say, I LOVE GOOD BEHAVIOR, so using this review as a combo review of all three. 

I first listened to the audiobook narrated by Julia Whelan and the author, Blake Crouch. (Exceptional). 

 

Afterward, immersed in Amazon Prime (TNT) TV Good Behavior. Purchased the entire season. Taking the fantastic information provided by Blake in the audiobook and applied to how the 3 novellas were transformed to on-screen. 

 

This is a “Must” to read the book and learn all the backstory. The backstage, inside scoop of how the author created these characters, and his collaboration with Chad Hodge for the television show. Quite intriguing. (Dying for a Season 2)….please, please!

 

In between, while getting caught up with the TV episodes, anxiously awaiting the weekly next episode, was “granted my wish” for a digital copy of the book, Good Behavior via NetGalley. Was so excited, with “Christmas coming early”, began diving into the book, and once again, read it in one sitting. I bookmarked so many pages. 

 

Letty Dobesh is troubled, flawed, beautiful, striking, smart, inventive, charismatic, self-destructive, a chameleon. She crosses between good and bad. A constant struggle. She is authentic. Real. Even though in (Episode 9) not happy with her attitude and kicking Javier to the curb with her betrayal. (Let’s hope she can turn her mistakes around once again). I was dying with this one. Javier is good for her. 

 

Don't score. Don't kill. 

 

We follow Letty on a journey as she attempts to discover who she really is, and wants more than anything to make peace with that woman, even if she does not fit “inside the box” society has drawn for her. She wants to be a good mother, a daughter, and a friend; to make up for her past mistakes and misdeeds. Every time she tries, she gets knocked down. 

 

Crouch is pitch perfect with his character development of both Letty and Javier. I like the transition from the book to the screen. 

 

The book: 
•    The Pain of Others
•    Sunset Key
•    Grab

 

After each of these novellas the author adds some insightful commentary about the work, the show, images, and other additional content from the journey, he has taken with Letty. No, I would not dare skip over these parts. I love it! 

 

With the book, it is like a backstage pass, with a peak at the inside operations. The reader becomes invested in the characters, the story, and a fan for life. Letty is flawed, irresistible, broken, lovely and brave. She wants desperately to get her son back. She keeps running into obstacles and pulled in by her addictions to stealing and the high. She is so good at being bad! 

 

I wanted to hold off writing my review until the last TV episode Season One; however, being it was on my Top Books for 2016 List my fellow GRs friends wanted to know my thoughts. Yes, I loved it! 

 

Letty Raines is a thief and con artist whose life is always one wrong turn, one bad decision, from implosion. Michelle Dockery is amazing. Juan Diego Botto (Javier) is sexy and to die for; each episode, I love him even more. Currently I am in HIS corner. 

 

Christian, Jacob, Estelle ( a piece of work), Rob and the other supporting characters only add to the intense drama. What a riot! In the meantime, I am now just finishing the 9th episode, and let me say, starting at episode 5, I fell totally in LOVE. A turning point, from five on. 

 

Letty and Javier are intimately connected on so many levels, and ultimately become each other’s saviors. Both emotionally-- two souls which are perfect for one another. 

 

At the opening of the 5th episode, when Letty opens with, “you came.” Javier replies, “you called.” 

 

OMG, that look between the two of them, was the best since: Jerry McGuire’s "You had me at 'hello," and Nicholas Sparks’ The Notebook, "I wrote you 365 letters. I wrote you every day for a year. It wasn't over… it still isn't over." 

 

A modern SEXY twist of The Notebook and Bonnie and Clyde. Letty can rock a wig. I think she needs to have her own line. I would definitely buy one. 
 

Season One: (TV) 


• So You’re Not an English Teacher (Good opening-Statesville, NC caption) even though filmed in Wilmington; Letty is rocking the red bob wig—love the Grove Park Inn) book mention, even though not filmed here. She has the southern accent down as well as the blonde bangs.
• Only the Best for Mrs. Diaz 
• From Terrible Me
• Your Mama Had a Hard Night (Letty-Sad but moving)
• Beautiful Things Deserve Beautiful Things (Hilarious!)** My favorite. Loved the short blonde wig and the St. John’s knit ensemble—Classy!
• We Pretend We’re Stuck (Loved the tie in with Jacob)- Emotional 
• The Ballad of Little Santino (Javier-Sad but moving) Fantastic look at his character’s past. 
• It Still Fits Bitch – A fun episode featuring Letty’s mom and Jacob. Tables are turned. 
• For You, I’d Go with Strawberry – Did not like the turn this one took. Please get Letty back on track with Javier. Bad, bad girl. Sure, there is a plan here. 

 

Waiting anxiously for the next episode . . .. in suspense.

 

Letty and Javier: Sexy, dangerous, thrilling, and flawed. With their tough exterior, we see their hearts, their desires, and love of family. The pull- of right and wrong. A fitting title for a struggle between right and wrong. Good and evil. From danger, intrigue, style, humor, emotion, heart, sex appeal, well-developed characters and an edge of your seat plot. All the ingredients for a HIT! Superb acting and pitch-perfect writing. 

 

Now that I have sold you on the book, and the author, I want to add a side personal note:

* * * * 
I am a native of Statesville, NC, (Lake Norman area) as is the author, Blake Crouch. Of course, I am older than the author; and moved away years ago, after high school for college. However, my dad still resides in the town, as well as my sister, and a few cousins. (like who would know about this small town: Piedmont region, located between Charlotte, and Winston-Salem)? My dad, 85, is still there, off Museum Road, and living independently,.

 

Was excited, when I began reading Blake Crouch’s other books, being from the area. Also. the opening scene with Statesville, NC caption (diner, the rain); a classic. (filmed in Wilmington). Go Blake! 

 

My only beef: I have stayed at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville NC (hotel scene in the book) many times over the years, both business and pleasure. I am a consultant in the hotel business spending time there recently with the hotel management. Wish they could have filmed the early episodes at the actual Grove Park. It would have been so fitting, especially with its history, and the to die for Spa and the underground tunnels. I could see Letty and Javier there at the indoor spa pool, with their plush robes, plus the great restaurants with the views, the cool bar, and all the stacked stone. However, they made it work, due to the fall high season at Grove Park. 

 

For Season 2: Sunset Key: My idea: I have lived and worked in the Florida Keys, on Overseas Hwy. If they could get the Keys scene filmed in Islamorada at the Cheeca Resort Lodge & Spa MM 81.6 and have them film with the backdrop, Spa Island Lagoon area (great accommodations) – stayed there many times. They also have a gift shop, if Letty wants to steal a few things. Film during June-Sept during hurricane season, so not as busy as high winter season. 

 

Also, film some sets (across the street) at Pierre’s (very Savannah-Charleston style) Stunning outdoor restaurant; also Morada Bay Beach Café & Bar, an outdoor Mediterranean bistro café. Could be filmed here versus Key West, with a feeling of a private island. Rewrite to fit the angle they are working with now. 

 

Somehow get Javier and Letty there. The rich dude could be possibly Letty’s real dad from her mom's secret past; being sent there for his final wish before prison. Wanting to meet his grandson Jacob and daughter. Letty and Javier work to save Jacob from danger. I am sure this dynamic duo can come up with a spin to get this one on air next season. Money, danger, family, and sex involved. PS also for another luxury setting, film at The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge in Charlotte, NC!

 

OK, Crouch fans and everyone else, BUY—the book, GOOD BEHAVIOR and watch the series! A show stopper. Hats off - A job well-done. Hopefully, we will see Season Two. I am hooked! Fingers crossed. 5 Stars +++ 

 

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About the Author

 

Blake Crouch is an internationally bestselling novelist and screenwriter. His Wayward Pines trilogy was adapted into a top-rated 2015 television series for FOX, on which M. Night Shyamalan served as executive producer. With Chad Hodge, he also created Good Behavior, the TNT television show starring Michelle Dockery, based on his Letty Dobesh novellas.

 

Crouch’s forthcoming novel, Dark Matter, has been optioned by Sony Pictures, and he is currently at work on the screenplay. Crouch has written more than a dozen novels, which have been translated into over thirty languages, and his short fiction has appeared in numerous publications, including Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine. Crouch lives in Colorado. Read More 

 

Praise 

  • Good Behavior on TNT

  • Read about Good Behavior on IMDB

  • Entertainment Weekly: Good Behavior: Michelle Dockery sizzles in racy new key art and promo—exclusive

  • USA Today: Michelle Dockery is bad girl in Good Behavior

  • Variety: TNT Greenlights new drama series: Good Behavior

  • Deadline: TNT drama Good Behavior to star Michelle Dockery (Downtown Abbey)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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