A Criminal to Remember

A Criminal to Remember by Michael Van Rooy


A Criminal to Remember

In this third episode of the Monty Haaviko thrillers, Monty is tried to the fullest extent of his wits to protect his family and the good citizens of Winnipeg.


Monty Haaviko, Winnipeg’s favourite househusband, babysitter, and ex-con, is running for chief of Winnipeg’s new police commission. It’s almost honest work, except that he’s been bribed to throw the election to his opponent, an ex-cop stooge of wealthy businessman, Cornelius Devanter. At the same time, Devanter’s archenemy has paid Monty an even bigger bribe to ensure the ex-cop loses. Monty is happy to oblige both, but once on the campaign trail, he realizes the good he can do for the citizens of Winnipeg if he wins.

Meanwhile, all is not quiet on the Haaviko home front. Claire, Monty’s beloved wife, starts receiving mysterious gifts and flowers from an anonymous stranger. When the RCMP links the gifts to a series of gruesome ­murders, Monty realizes the police aren’t telling him everything about his wife’s admirer—a serial killer called the Shy Man. For once, Monty is stumped: how does an ordinary, decent, friendly neighbourhood criminal like him understand the mind of a psychopathic monster?  

Short-listed for the 2011 Carol Shields Book Award
Advanced Praise

A terrific story, engrossing and inventive. Van Rooy has upped the 'anti' in his hero and given us a character who is irresistible—endlessly resourceful, morally complex, and very funny. Be a crime not to read it.

Terry Griggs, author of Thought You Were Dead

Van Rooy writes with assuredness and humour. Again in A Criminal to Remember every action brings a quick reaction, and every irony is soon undermined. Like Monty Haaviko, his (ex-)criminal hero, Van Rooy enjoys himself as he entertains the reader.

George Szanto, author of Never Sleep with a Suspect (on Gabriola Island)


A little darker in tone than the previous two books, A Criminal to Remember is a sophisticated, multi-layered novel that will keep you turning the pages right to the end.

Stirg Larsson, Jo Nesbø, Yrsa Sigurdardóttir, The Bookseller

While it is a slightly darker turn than previous outings—there is no way to tell this sort of story lightly—Monty's wit and clever dissections of the criminal (and law-abiding) lifestyle never fail to entertain.

Chadwick Ginther

A Criminal to Remember is memorable.

Jenni Mortin, The StarPhoenix

Van Rooy's attention to detail, and Monty's encyclopaedic trivia for the details of the criminal life make a unique, entertaining, and thoroughly Canadian, read.

Rob Wiersema, 49th Shelf



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