All I Did Was Shoot My Man (Leonid McGill Series #4)

All I Did Was Shoot My Man (Leonid McGill Series #4)

by Walter Mosley


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Zella Grisham never denied shooting her boyfriend. That’s not why she did eight years of hard time on a sixteen-year sentence. It’s that the shooting inadvertently led to charges of grand theft. Talk about bad luck.

Leonid McGill has reasons to believe she’s innocent. But reopening the case is only serving to unsettle McGill’s private life even further—and expose a family secret that’s like a kick to the gut.

As the case unfolds, as the truth of what happened eight years ago becomes more damning and more complex than anyone dreamed, McGill and Zella realize that everyone is guilty of something, and that sometimes the sins of the past can be too damaging to ever forget. Or ever forgive.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780594795605
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/05/2013
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 132,007
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Walter Mosley is one of America’s most celebrated, beloved, and bestselling writers. His books have been translated into at least twenty-one languages, and have won numerous awards. Born in Los Angeles, Mosley lives in New York City.


New York, New York

Date of Birth:

January 12, 1952

Place of Birth:

Los Angeles, California


B.A., Johnson State College

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Praise for All I Did Was Shoot My Man

“The best [McGill] book yet.”—The Boston Globe

“Like the city he works in, and the Mosley books he inhabits, Leonid McGill is complicated, savvy and full of surprises: a would-be champ who can't win for losing, a fighter who can never be counted out.”—The Wall Street Journal

“A big city never looks the same once you've walked its streets with a hard-boiled private eye. preferably someone as perceptive and thoughtful as Leonid McGill…[He] doesn't so much walk the city as case it for danger. Keeping pace with him is as much an education as an adventure.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Mosley ratchets up the tension with each new installment in his compelling series.”—Star-Ledger

“Walter Mosley has proven over and over again during the past two decades that he is not only one of America’s greatest mystery writers, but is one of America’s greatest writers period—an American literary treasure. And in All I Did Was Shoot My Man…Mosley has given us one of his best works ever. In Leonid McGill, Mosley has created a character Dostoyevsky would have loved. [He] has written a mystery novel that transcends the genre—a private-eye story for the new, uncertain and constantly dangerous century. All I Did Was Shoot My Man is one of the best books of [the year] and you can’t help but root for Leonid McGill. We have much to look forward to with this series. Kudos to Walter Mosley.”—

“The best in the series to date…complex, satisfying.”—Publishers Weekly

“Exceptional storytelling.”—Library Journal

Customer Reviews

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All I Did Was Shoot My Man 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 48 reviews.
Ronrose More than 1 year ago
Walter Mosley continues his winning ways with this fast paced, hard hitting, twisted web of a mystery. If you haven't started reading Mosley, you are truly missing out on some very literate and well plotted mysteries. Leonid McGill has a problem, well, one of many. Years ago at a mobster's request, he planted evidence against a woman, Zella Grisham, that implicated her as an accomplice in a multimillion dollar robbery. She was already on the fast track to prison, having shot and wounded her husband three times after finding him in bed with another woman. Over the years, McGill has been changing his ways, regretting many of the things he had done in his dark past. After seven years in prison, Zella is released after McGill founds a way to have the robbery evidence discredited without implicating himself. McGill tries furtively to further pay his debt to Zella by finding out who really stole the corporate millions. Bodies soon start to pile up around him as someone is covering their trail. When his family is threatened McGill turns up the heat. Provided for review by the well read folks at Library Thing and Riverhead Books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the Easy Rawlins series, but McGill has way too many characters to keep track of. Probably terrific for someone who can.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't quite connect! Too many characters and plot way too busy!! It was hard to keep track of who was who and who was doing what!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hate to give a brotha a bad review BUT this is truly one of the worst reads in the 10 years of our book club history. Gave him a second chance...not worthy of a third.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Complicated, but so intelligently written. I read passages out loud to my wife. I am ordering another in this series now. That is the highest praise I can give.
creny More than 1 year ago
This book starts right off as intriguing. It's LT all the way if you have all of this series. you will love this book. There is a lot of mystery and action. The ending was a surprise for sure. I can't wait for #5 to come out. a must read.
ReadalotNC More than 1 year ago
I've loved all of Walter Mosley's books and I realy like the Leonid McGill series. This one was every bit as good. I love the way he tells a story. He makes you want to not stop reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love that young man, this series is a good one....i just hope there is another book b/c there is another book in there, ( what happen with the wife..the girlfriend..his dad..his kids..will they ever know the truth about there " daddy ".. and will my favorite... TWILL, will he hook up with his bff...just ..get ..writing .,Mr.Mosley!, lol
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was exciting, I loved the fights, I loved the feelings McGill shared, they're deep. I really loved Twill in the "family business", dangerous as it is, it is a good place for him. And I really love Twill!!! No closure for Tolstoy nor Aura here, but this is a series ;-) SDC
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
Leonid Trotter (“LT”) McGill is a 55-year-old African-American man, a former boxer, con man, fixer and over-all reprobate turned [relatively honest] PI is one of the more unusual characters in mystery fiction. Married, he has little if anything to do with his wife. As far as his three children are concerned, he acknowledges that two are not his, but he loves and nurtures all. His collection of friends and associates are as unconventional as he is. And so are the books in the series, all somewhat bizarre but very enjoyable. The plots of the books, while intricate and complicated, tend to be odd. And the present installment is no different. In the past, LT framed a young woman who shot her boyfriend three times, when she came home to find him in bed with her best friend. Since she was destined to go to jail anyway, he planted evidence in her locker of complicity in a $548 million heist from an insurance company. Some years later, LT finds the “false” information that led to her conviction following which his lawyer gets her released from prison. As a result, a number of events take place, including an attempt on LT’s life, along with the murders of several others. Of course, it’s up to him to solve the case. Written in a style that sometimes defies belief, the complexity and insight of the novel and, especially, the LT character, are overwhelming. With each book, development of LT as a person deepens, and the reader gains substantial knowledge of the man. Highly recommended.
darscb6 More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent read. I really enjoy Walter Mosley books they always bring an interesting perspective on life. The blended dysfunctional family is the norm for most people we just choose not to talk about it.
DarleneGinn-Hargrove More than 1 year ago
sangreal More than 1 year ago
Walter Mosely’s Leonid McGill is not a good man. He isn’t necessarily a bad man either, but he has done some really bad things in the past. Product of a dysfunctional home and the enabler of another of his own making, he has decided to change his life around and atone for the wrong he has done. In this fourth outing in the series, All I Did Was Shoot My Man, this means arranging for the release of Zella Grisham, and helping her get back on her feet. Zella (to whom the title of the book refers) was framed by McGill for a larger crime than the one which she actually committed, involving a multi-million dollar heist. Once she’s out of jail however, both she and McGill discover that there is much more to the heist than either of them ever knew about. This is the basis for the action which follows. The ‘whodunit’ aspect of the book is well plotted and entertaining. I wasn’t able to figure out who was really behind the heist before the end of the book, which for me is quite unusual, so I have to say I definitely enjoyed the mystery. However, the development of McGill’s character, his interactions with his wife, children, lover and the various other persons who people his world, are without a doubt the best part of this book. As much as I love Mosely’s Easy Rawlins, Leonid McGill is fast becoming a new favorite of mine. This was a very fast-paced read, and very enjoyable. It would appeal to readers who enjoy noir with a difference, as well as interesting characters and a solid plot.
TN1796 More than 1 year ago
In his fourth mystery Leonid McGill takes on the case of Zella Grisham. Eight years before she was found with a dead boyfriend, $50,000 of the $58 million haul from a recent heist - and no memory of what happened. Now out of jail she hires McGill. He is convinced of her innocence. At the same time, he must deal with a wife who is drinking too much and the various problems of his children. To top it off, his long-lost father turns up for a visit.He must solve the twin mysteries of what happened in Zella's case and what it takes to make and hold a family. This is a series that has hit its stride and keeps on its sure-footed way in each new installment.
danieljayfriedman on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Leonid Trotsky McGill (AKA ¿LT,¿ Trot, Leonid Trotter McGill, Leonid Tolstoy McGill, Leonid Trotsky McGill) of Walter Mosley¿s All I Did Was Shoot My Man is a middle-aged private detective with a shady past, shady friends, a cheating wife, a much-loved but estranged girlfriend, and three adored children. LT schemes to redeem himself for framing Zella Grisham, who is innocent of stealing $58 million from the vault of the Rutgers Assurance Corporation but not of shooting her unfaithful lover. Just released from jail, Zella is met by LT when she arrives at the Port Authority in New York. LT gives her cash and a job contact, while pretending to be merely the messenger for Zella¿s lawyer. But LT doesn¿t know who actually stole the $58 million, and New York City becomes scattered with assorted suspects and ne¿er do well¿s thought to know the money¿s whereabouts. LT protects and hides Zella, solves this confusing case that resembles a ¿looping snake looking you in the face and attacking from below and behind at the same time,¿ beats up and shoots foreign assassins, and ultimately restores the stolen cash to its rightful owners.While All I Did Was Shoot My Man superficially centers on LT¿s efforts to salve his conscience and recover the missing stolen loot, its most interesting and affecting themes focus on LT¿s relationships with his troubled wife, his failing marriage, his favorite son Twill, his not-so-favorite ¿blood¿ son Dmitri leaving home to move in with Dmitri¿s ex-hooker Byelorussian girlfriend, his teen daughter¿s assignation with a married older man, and his attempts at reuniting with his long-lost revolutionary father. For those of us who are Walter Mosley fans and have read the three earlier Leonid McGill mysteries, reading All I Did Was Shoot My Man is like spending an evening with a beloved old friend. Sometimes LT loses track of his reminisces and sometimes he seems to repeat what he¿s told us in earlier conversations without apparently remembering that he¿s done so. But LT¿s humility, decency, and huge capacity for tolerating, supporting, and loving his family and friends, flawed as they are, helps to restore our faith in our own families and friends.
jnwelch on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
"I don't have to let you in," the doorman told me."Yeah, you do. You know it and I do too. So hop to it, whatever you're gonna do, and let us be about our business.""You should have a little respect," the doorman advised."I give what I get, brother."Leonid McGill in Walter Mosley's fourth book in this mystery series, All I Did Was Shoot My Man, is a proud man who's not going to take any mess from anybody, high to low. Like other Mosley characters (Socrates Fortlow comes to mind), he has done bad things in his life and wants to redeem himself. Once a fixer who helped cover up crimes, now he's a private eye trying to help others. In this one, his efforts to free a (relatively) innocent woman he helped send to prison trigger events he's hard-pressed to survive. Zella shot her husband when she caught him in bed with another woman (he lived), but she didn't steal the $58 million from Rutgers Corp. that she got framed for.When she's released, the dominoes start falling and people start dying, as some are anxious that their tracks not be uncovered and everyone wants to find the $58 million. This is an excellent noir mystery, with a complicated plot that reminded me of Raymond Chandler. It's the best so far in the series, and one of the best Mosley has written in his long, successful career. His characters, as usual, are compelling, including killer Hush, antagonist Captain Kitteridge, newly in love daughter Stella, son Dimitri besotted with a Slavic schemer, and high up security supervisor Antoinette Lowry, who doesn't trust black men even though she's black herself. McGill himself leads the pack. Raised in a Communist, revolutionary home, caught in a loveless marriage to a Nordic beauty who has fathered two of his three children with other men (he loves them all), he is seeking his long-disappeared father and some way to have a life with his soul mate Aura. He's also trying to be good in a life that keeps him enmeshed in his criminal past, and he doggedly keeps his eye on the prize while protecting his loved ones from the dangers that chase him. Affecting every move are the economic disparities that in his mind have superseded racism as the prime driver in modern America:"Racism is a luxury in a world where resources are scarce, where economic competition is an armed sport, in a world where even the atmosphere is plotting against you. In an arena like that racism is more a halftime entertainment, a favorite sitcom when the day is done."He's trying to keep his capable but wild son, Twill (a wonderful character) out of trouble by having him help with the investigative business. "I'd brought him into the business to keep him out of a life of crime. But he'd turned out so much like me that I had to wonder if anyone or anything, outside of death, could save him from himself." It turns out Twill is as streetwise and adept as Leonid, and he helps bring the story to a satisfying conclusion, although resolution of Leonid's personal demons will have to come in future volumes.
Gwnfkt12 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The only problem I had with this book is that I was not ready for it to end when it did. All of a sudden, McGill has figured out who the bad guy is and the mystery is solved and all the lose ends wrapped up and the book is over. But this is a problem stemming from the fantastic storytelling abilities of author Walter Mosley and is actually the best kind of ending for the fourth book in a series - I can¿t wait to read more! All I Did Was Shoot My Man is smart, intense, and humorous despite the odds just like its incomparable main character and leading man. If you don¿t want LT in your corner by the time you finish this story, then you shouldn¿t be in the ring in the first place.
caitemaire on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I had always hear such good things about this series and Mr. Mosley as an author that I was very excited to read this book.Sadly, I did not like it nearly as much as I thing that I would. That surprised me. I love a good thriller, a ice bit of noir mystery. But not this time.And at the heart of not really liking it was that I really did not like the central character, Leonid McGill. Come to think of it, I was not that fond of most of the characters, and that is an issue for me when I read a book.Maybe part of the problem is that I coming in late to a series..I believe this is the 4th...but I am not sure that is the issue.Maybe it just is that McGill is often not a nice guy. It seems, from what we know, not as bad as he once was, but not someone I would want to know.Still that happens in books, even books that I like, but I just had the hardest time in this book really caring what happen to McGill and the rest.I had problems with the writing style as well, the repetition, the constant descriptions of people, too many people, who all started to sound alike.
gma2lana on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was ok. Not a book that I was anxious to pick up and keep reading. Actually, I was sometimes lost with all of the different characters coming into play.
brookeott on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
My first review of this got lost in the system (grrrr¿.) I have read every book Mosley has written and have not been disappointed in any of them. I think one of the problems which people may have is starting in the middle of a series and having difficulty following characters and plots. Since most of his books are part of a series and not a stand-alone story it would be easy to dismiss him as difficult to understand. His writing is unique and flows effortlessly if you have kept up with characters and plot lines. If considering reading him I would suggest starting at the beginning of one of his series. The longest is the Easy Rawlins series but others include the Leonid McGill, Socrates Fortlow and Fearless Jones books.This Leonid McGill novel is a continuation of previous novels starring McGill. Mosley¿s writing is consistently taut and engaging and his characters are, for the most part, well-drawn, albeit usually complex and unpredictable. I found this book a fast and very satisfying read.
wdwilson3 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've read books in Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins series and enjoyed them immensely. I was therefore greatly disappointed by this book, the fourth in the Leonid McGill series. Perhaps it would have helped if I had read the previous installments, because I was instantly confused by the deluge of family, friends, foes, and miscellaneous characters. I was a quarter of the way through the book and no semblance of a plot had emerged, and I gave up.
Ronrose1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Walter Mosley continues his winning ways with this fast paced, hard hitting, twisted web of a mystery. If you haven't started reading Mosley, you are truly missing out on some very literate and well plotted mysteries. Leonid McGill has a problem, well, one of many. Years ago at a mobster's request, he planted evidence against a woman, Zella Grisham, that implicated her as an accomplice in a multimillion dollar robbery. She was already on the fast track to prison, having shot and wounded her husband three times after finding him in bed with another woman. Over the years, McGill has been changing his ways, regretting many of the things he had done in his dark past. After seven years in prison, Zella is released after McGill founds a way to have the robbery evidence discredited without implicating himself. McGill tries furtively to further pay his debt to Zella by finding out who really stole the corporate millions. Bodies soon start to pile up around him as someone is covering their trail. When his family is threatened McGill turns up the heat.
lauranav on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Leonid McGill series by Walter Mosley was on my too-read list. When I won volume 4 as an Early Reviewer, I jumped at the chance to catch up on the series. Each novel stands well alone, but there is an ongoing life that builds with each volume as well.Leonid McGill is a PI with a fairly complicated life. Married, currently separated from his lover, trying to protect his 3 children even though two aren't really his, and protecting a number of other people important to him - he has a lot to keep up with. Plus he is trying to work jobs that keep him honest now that he's turned over a new leaf and attempted to leave his sordid past behind him. This time the case is his, as he is attempting to free a woman he helped frame in his prior life. But the bodies are piling up, and it appears someone is after Leonid himself. The pacing is fast and the hero is flawed but sincere. It says something about this series that I have read 4 within fairly quick succession (with a book or two in-between) and I am eager for the next one.
crazy4reading on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Another great win from Library Things Early Reviewers program!! This book started out slow for me but by the 3rd chapter I was interested in learning more about Leonid McGill!Leonid is the main character in All I did was Shoot my Man. Leonid used to be a career criminal. He was best know for changing evidence in crimes to convict some people that should be convicted and some that were innocent. One of those persons is Zella Grisham. Leonid set her up as having stolen $58 million dollars from this corporation. Now that Leonid (LT) has decided to become honest he gets Zella release from prison for the stolen money. LT is also a private detective.LT also has a family, a wife and 3 grown children. One boy who works for him, his name is Twill, a daughter known as Shelly and another son called Dimitri. The characters are all very unique and interesting in their interactions with each other as family. This added to my enjoyment of the bookThe mystery is finding out who was the master mind behind this money heist and murders. LT and his family actually become targets of the culprits and are attacked in their apartment one night.The ending was surprising and leaves me wanting to read more about LT McGill!
AnnieMod on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Once upon a time, a young woman shot her man. And she would have walked free (or close to) if someone had not framed her for a robbery. The someone had been noone else but Leonid McGill who had cleaned up his act since (or cleaned it somewhat at least) and now when Zella is due to be released from jail, he decides to try to fix what he did last time. Of course it will not be easy - there are the missing money, people not believing in the innocence of Zella and old friends and enemies showing up from everywhere. Add a baby that need to be tracked down (Zella's - born in jail and then adopted), Leonid's interesting family (wife and 3 kids - each of them as interesting a character as any) and a shadow from the past and the story is a lot more than it looks like.Technically it is a thriller and there is enough to make it so. But if you look carefully, it is the story of a family - which tries to stay together amid hostilities and crime (a hefty doze of the crime being made by someone in the family) and about parents. And about the city - which end up an almost invisible character - invisible and yet always there. And then there is the style - it is a bit weird - quite readable when you get used to it but still quirky. I am not sure if it would have been better if I had read earlier books in the series -- the background information was in the book and for the rest reasonable guesses worked properly. But I am also sure that I missed nuances that get developed in series. On the other hand I suspect the repetition would have been too much - so maybe it is better that this is my first Leonid McGill book. No way to know unless if I read the previous books and I am planning to do exactly this.