Rocks Beat Paper: A Wilson Mystery - ECW Press

Rocks Beat Paper: A Wilson Mystery

Knowles, Mike

  • A highly entertaining heist thriller that combines “the intense grit of Richard Stark’s Parker series with the amorality of Jim Thompson’s work” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

    A phone call brought Wilson and nine other men to a job in New York. At first, he couldn’t see a way to make the heist work, but the score — millions of dollars in diamonds — motivated him to try. Wilson came up with a plan he knew would work . . . until the inside man got killed and took the job with him.

    With no way inside, the crew walks away without the diamonds. Now, on his own, Wilson is free to execute the job his way. He sets a con in motion that should run as predictably as a trail of dominoes — except the con doesn’t rely on inanimate tiles, it relies on people. And when Wilson pushes all the pieces across the board, he finds that there are other players making their own moves against him. No one is willing to walk away because the job is about more than money. The job is about diamonds. And in this game, rocks beat paper every time.


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  • Mike Knowles lives in Hamilton with his wife, children, and dog. His Wilson mystery In Plain Sight was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award for best crime novel.

  • Published: May 2017

    ISBN: 9781770411012

    Dimensions: 5 x 7.75 in.

    Pages: 296


Rocks Beat Paper is proof positive the modern heist novel is alive and well.” — Wallace Stroby, author of the Crissa Stone series

“His writing is crisp, plotting is tight, and all his novels have left me eagerly waiting his next release. Do yourself a favour and grab this book and take it for a spin.” — Out of the Gutter Online

“Add in a few car chases and breathless escapes and readers will flip over this flipped over plot.” — Owen Sound Sun-Times

“Mike Knowles has written a great heist job. Solid pacing, turnabouts and enough about the characters to keep you interested.” — Murder in Common blog

“The tension will ease only when breathless readers turn the very last page. Knowles builds for impact and speed.” — Kirkus Reviews starred

“Combining the intense grit of Richard Stark’s Parker series with the amorality of Jim Thompson’s work, Knowles once again delivers a heady brew of tough-guy dialogue, byzantine plots, vibrant characters, and a protagonist who believes only in ‘an I for an I.’” — Publishers Weekly, starred

“To me it seemed like there was more to the story than what meets the eye and I was right! . . . I will be picking up the first books in the series when I can get my hands on them.” — Debra’s Book Café blog

“Wilson owes much to Parker, the one-named robber/murderer in the late Donald E. Westlake’s riveting series written under the pen name of Richard Stark. If Knowles’s work hasn’t yet climbed to Stark territory, he’s confidently on his way. His plotting is even more intricate than Stark’s. . . Wilson offers readers a highly entertaining textbook on the tricky and often violent art of identifying and stealing the world’s most priceless jewelry.” — Toronto Star