Rocklin, CA, United States | Member Since 2004
I'm not a big fan of the more recent Faye Kellerman books, but this older one has everything you loved in her Peter Decker series -- a whopping good mystery, tidbits of the personal life of Peter and Rina, police lore, plus the fact that Faye Kellerman writes the best dinner-table conversations of any author out there. A couple of dinner scenes in this one made me laugh out loud -- its so darn accurate you can hear it coming out of the mouths of your own family.
Something else I found spellbinding -- this book came out in 1995, and without offering a spoiler, suffice it to say that the plot involves a business trip to Israel for both Rina and Peter. In 1995, I was living in California, so back when I read this book, most of the nuances of their time in Israel probably went right past me. Now I've been living in Israel for ten years, and found Kellerman's storytelling absolutely fascinating. Israel has changed quite a bit since then, but many things remain exactly the same. When Rina finds herself driving to Hebron, all by herself, I literally cringed -- are you kidding? She's crazy! Only to find that a few minutes later, Rina is being soundly chastised by a police officer using virtually the same words I'd have used in telling her off. Kellerman's account of the streets of Israel, some of the people she writes about, are extremely accurate, even today. It was fun to see someone writing about Israel who obviously knew what they were talking about.
Huge credit in this one goes to the narrator, Mitchell Greenberg. He had to master a plethora of languages and accents, everything from Brooklynese to Yeshivish to Hebrew -- broken and fluent -- not to mention Southern California plus the southern drawl of Marge. Very impressive, how he could switch so easily from an aged Ashkenazi rosh yeshiva in Israel to a Sephardic police captain, then to the stumbling attempts at Hebrew by Peter Decker himself. Well done!
True, this book had an unusual number of highly improbable events -- amazing deductions, based on almost nothing, that not only turn out to be true, but were also provable on the first try. That's okay -- this is fiction. Leaps of faith are acceptable.
Darn good book. The best of the series, by any standard.
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