Strega (novel)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Strega cover.jpg
Author Andrew Vachss
Country United States
Language English
Genre Hardboiled detective novel
Publisher Alfred A. Knopf, New York, U.S.A.
Publication date
12 February 1987
Media type Print (hardcover and mass market paperback)
Pages 293 pp
ISBN 0-394-55937-1
Preceded by Flood
Followed by Blue Belle

Strega (Italian for "witch" or "sorceress") is a hardboiled detective novel written by American author and attorney Andrew Vachss, first published in 1987. The story features the pursuit and destruction by the protagonist Burke, an ex-con private investigator, of a pedophile ring involved in trading child pornography via telephone modems. The novel was written and published long before social concern over the use of the Internet for spreading or trading child pornography became widespread.[1][2] It is the second novel in the Burke Series.

The novel is also significant because it introduces numerous characters who would go on to appear in all of the Burke series: Immaculata (Max's girlfriend and later mother to Flower); rescued child prostitute Terry (who would become Mole and Michelle's son); and Wolfe, who is serving as an Assistant District Attorney when the events in this story take place.

After the critical acclaim and commercial success of his first novel Flood, Vachss was contacted by Robert Gottlieb, then editor-in-chief of the New York publishing house Alfred A. Knopf, and signed a contract with an advance of US $175,000 for Strega.[3] The novel subsequently won the 1988 Grand Prix de Littérature Policière, a prestigious French award for mystery and crime novels, and the 1989 Falcon Award by the Maltese Falcon Society of Japan.[4]


  1. ^ Schofield, Karin (2004). "Chapter 10 - Collisions of Culture and Crime: Media Commodifications of Child Sexual Abuse". Cultural Criminology Unleashed. Routledge-Cavendish. pp. 126–127. ISBN 1-904385-37-0. 
  2. ^ O'Donnell, Ian; Milner, Claire (2007). Child Pornography: Crime, Computers and Society. Willan Publishing. p. 29. ISBN 1-84392-356-4. 
  3. ^ Pooley, Eric (25 May 1987). "The Last Angry Man: Lawyer Andrew Vachss Takes to Novels to Fight Child Abuse". New York. Vol. 20 no. 21. New York Media, LLC. p. 44. ISSN 0028-7369. 
  4. ^ "Andrew Vachss - Contemporary Author New Revision Series, Volume 44, pages 444-446". The Official Website of Andrew Vachss. Retrieved 16 October 2010.