This book starts slowly and Mr. Spiegleman takes a lot of time to introduce the main character, John March. We learn he is the scion of a wealthy Wall Street family who chose to become a policeman in upstate New York rather than go into the family business. When tragedy enters his life he goes into an emotional tailspin and winds up back in Manhattan as a private investigator. He is hired by attorney friend to look into a case of blackmail involving one of Wall Street's superstars, who doesn't want the police involved. From this point the story begins to gain momentum. We are introduced to a cast of characters who are both fascinating and well drawn as well as believable. As usual in private detective stories the main character makes some bad choices along the way and gets thoroughly beaten up on several occasions. Mr. Spiegleman spends a lot of time at the beginning of each scene describing the setting, the weather and what everyone is wearing. Some might find that annoying, others not. The plot winds to an exciting conclusion in a logical way with just enough twists and turns to keep it from getting trite. Overall I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to fans of this genre.
Peter Spiegelman's debut thriller is quite good and it looks like he's going to be a top flight book seller in the future. Private Eye John March is an excellent character and he pursues his goals with typical PI aplomb, guts and an appropriate amount of recklessness. It must be difficult to create a gripping thriller about hanky panky in the bank business, but Spiegelman succeeds splendidly. The books gets off to a slow start while the author educates us about certain aspects of the banking business, but then it zooms into can't-put-the-book-down territory. By the end of the book you know you haven't wasted your time, you've read a masterful thriller and you eagerly look forward to future offerings from this promising writer.
I read this at the recommendation of a book club and was pleasantly surprised. John March, young investigator and grieving widower, is drawn into an case where nothing is as it seems. Guilt and mystery surround all parties and John is nearly offed several times by ???? The New York atmosphere is well-captured. March's strange, past misfortunes are slowly revealed, balanced by his boyish exuberance and potential new love interest. I found him a likable fellow, though some of the attorney and FBI agent characterizations were exaggerated and the author had a peculiar need to describe everyone's clothing in exquisite detail -- The ending, of course, is not what you expect. Not a heavy book, like some of the Grisham novels, but fun. Will read more in the series.
John March rejected a position at his family's merchant bank. He became a rural deputy sheriff. Working for his fiancee's father. On his honeymoon a serial killer trying to get at March murders his wife. March leaves the area and sets up a private investigator business in New York City. He gets a blackmail case involving a client who is an executive with a seemingly shady past. The plot is quite good as the reader follows many twists and turns along the way. The author gives quite vivid and detailed physical descriptions of the main characters. For my taste, even though I thought this was an excellent read it seemed to often lack that "must turn the page" quality that distinguish's the five star read. Still it was a nice change of pace.
Decent story that could have used some serious editing. Every character is introduced by: shape of head, hair color, hair length, eye type, eye color, shape of nose,chin,neck, complete inventory of clothing articles, color and style. How did they smell. Stature. Vocal attributes. And then if we ever saw them again, a comprehensive update would be provided. It got old.
John March is one of a family of investment bankers who now is a detective. He had separated from his family, moved upstate, only to lose his wife. Now, he is in NYC and he is a detective.
This could be fun. Especially if he can use his smarts, his connections to banking and to the smart set in NYC to inform his work as a detective. But this engaging, witty character is a bit credulous, a bit weak.
(By the way, the author has written a very great stand-alone book, Thick as Thieves, recently. Buy it first.)
My problems with Mr. March? When bullied by the FBI and a U.S. Attorney, he has no real intellectual resources to turn the table. When assaulted by various criminals, he has no real physical resources to fight the thugs. You begin to wonder why he tried to be a detective, and if he wouldn't have been better off being a clever detective, or a tough detective. What adjective applies -- hapless? Get along go along detective?
The setting is grand; the author knows NYC, and there are some witty elements. But the detective is just too passive in a fight... a fight with attorneys, or a fight with street criminals. If you knew this guy, you would tell him to take the job as director of security at his family firm, where he can be a bit safer, and where is reactive style could perhaps work well enough to keep his head intact.
We read detective novels for detection, character, or action. This series has some character, and is likeable, but lacks action and detection. But the author has chops, and so go get a copy of Thick as Thieves, his best work.