The cruel and bizarre slaying of a beautiful teen leads Detective Decker into the dark heart of an exotic subculture: the seamy, sometimes violent world of Southern California's rootless, affluent youth. But even the confession of a disturbed kid with cold "killer eyes" cannot soothe Decker's inner torment. For he knows in his gut this crime goes much deeper and higher than anyone expects - and that true justice, brutal and complete, has yet to be done.
Solve another case with Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus.
©1995 Faye Kellerman (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers
My taste in books seems to run along a space-crime continuum
If you enjoy this series mostly because of the wonderful Rina Lazarus Decker and her children and/or because of the fascinating peeks into the world of ultraorthodox (Torah) Judaism, skip this one. Rina is barely in this book, her sons are totally absent, and daughter Hannah is still a toddler. What limited religious discussion there is centers on Roman Catholic Guilt.
In "Justice," family life and religion take a (very) back seat to, in plain words, explicit and perverse but nonetheless erotic sex, and to the introduction of two new characters who (fortunately, in my opinion) will show up in several later entries in this series.
Large segments of the book are narrated in the first person by 16-year-old Theresa McLaughlin, a precociously intelligent and immensely beautiful senior at a Valley high school whose family life is barren and dysfunctional. She recounts her relationship and sexual awakening with Christopher Whitman, an equally beautiful senior at the same high school, but older and mysteriously independent. He is also a musical prodigy (classical cello) and the adopted son of a Mafioso who has brought him up to be a stone-cold killer. His childhood makes Terry's family miseries look like a day at the beach.
I've liked most of the Decker/Lazarus books, and find "Justice" to be one of the most engrossing and interesting. Murder doesn't happen until 2/3 of the way in, but when it does, it's a gripping and baffling case that takes a lot of unexpected twists. There is no doubt that Terry and, most especially, Chris are compelling characters; not surprising that Faye Kellerman will bring them back in later books. Yay!
Now the bad news. Mitch Greenberg, who narrates most of the books in this series, is a straightforward "cop procedural" narrator who does a good job with Detective Peter Decker and has accomplished a more than acceptable characterization of Rina. He also does a good job as Chris. But he is *totally* out of his element when he takes on the first-person narrations by Theresa. She whines like an immature Valley Girl, when in fact the character is mature beyond her years and the musically gifted Chris first notices her because of her resonant and lovely speaking voice. Oops. With at least a third of the book (and all the erotic scenes) narrated this way, it is a shame the publisher could not have sprung for a really good female reader for the role of Terry.
I read this book out of order, and found the switching back and forth between the new character, Teri, and Decker a bit confusing at first. Greenberg IS Peter Decker, yet he manages to convey Teri so clearly I can see her. On the face of things it seems like an unpremeditated murder, but there are many aspects of this case that are not what they seem. I read and listen to a lot of mysteries, and I have to say, I did not see the end coming.
This book was interesting and a good listen. I would buy it again if given the choice again.
Yes. It has a very interesting story and is much more fast-paced than her books usually are. It is more about other characters and less about the Deckers' personal lives.
It is face paced and has interesting characters outside the Decker family.
I don't find that Faye Kellerman always delivers. Sometimes there is more about her religion and family that gets tedious in some of the books instead of there being a true plot. However, I liked this one and didn't want it to stop.
This is the first book I've read of Faye Kellerman's and has got me hooked on the characters of Chris and Terry. These two are drawn to each other from the start of the book, and just grows into a turmoil of emotions from both sides. She's good to the core, and he's rotten to the core (almost), but you can't help not liking him. Their story is woven around a murder that Chris is right in the middle of, thus bringing in Peter Decker, to investigate. Not a dull moment to this story, and the ending blows your mind. This one is well worth your time, if you like psychological thrillers.
I have enjoyed the Decker/Lazarus series, and this book was well written. But it was smuttier than the others I'd listened too. The language seemed unnecessarily cruder and the situation darker and more twisted. I am not a fan of this book - but I AM a fan of the series....
The reader was great - as usual...
Dog Agility Nut
Yes, highly recommended. I love all the Peter Decker series. And Mitchell Greenberg does a great job of narrating. I like his voice. It fits the character of Peter.
We loved the book and we have enjoyed the characters, even though we have not read the books in the order in which they were written. I am glad that we did not read the reviews of others before we purchased because we do not agree with the spoilers.
It's obvious early on that a baby will turn up missing from the hospital. But there are still plenty of surprises and the book is still hard to put down.
Decker’s teenage daughter, Cindy, joins the cast of characters in this novel. I can’t say she is a Mommy “wanta-be” as much as she is a typical teen who loves babies. I will say that hospital nurseries would not give her the privileges she has in this book. That is a BIG stretch.
Cindy does have her Dad’s genes in the police science realm, a sense of immortality, and a thirst for adventure like most teens. She is more refreshing than most teens. If anything, she is TOO good.
We enjoyed following the mystery of the enigmatic nurse, the missing baby, and the unidentified victim of a grisly murder.
The book has a lot going on.
The reader could not possibly be better!!!!!!!!!!!
Audio books are just my cup of tea!
In this book there is an additional character in first person. It caught me off guard at first but, I really enjoyed this book. Have to say Marge took a vacation and did not come back in this book. I even went on the web to see if anyone had any news about the character. Don’t worry she is back in the next book. Love this series and Mitch is a great narrator!
I downloaded an earlier audio book Prayers for the Dead and sorry Kellerman fans but I was not impressed. As a matter of fact, I gave it a poor review. The book was on sale and I was not impressed with the audio at all. However, this book definitely kept my interest. It was nicely narrated, the story good and the book a good mystery/crime.
A good listen.
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