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Publisher's Summary

The second book in the Kate Martinelli Mystery Aeries.

When a band of homeless people cremate a beloved dog in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, the authorities are willing to overlook a few broken regulations. But three weeks later, when the dog’s owner gets the same fiery send-off, the SFPD has a real headache on its hands. The autopsy suggests homicide, but Inspector Kate Martinelli and her partner, Al Hawkin, have little else to go on: A homeless victim with no positive ID, a group of witnesses with little love for the cops, and a possible suspect, known only as Brother Erasmus, who proves both articulate and impossible to understand.

Erasmus, has a genius for blending with his surroundings, yet he stands out wherever he goes. He is by no means crazy—but he is a Fool. Kate begins the frustrating task of interrogating a man who communicates only through quotations. In Laurie R. King's To Play the Fool, trying to learn something of his history leads Kate along a twisting road to a disbanded cult, long-buried secrets, the thirst for spirituality, and the hunger for bloody vengeance.

©1995 Laurie R. King (P)2013 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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    77
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

If St. Francis was in your city park,,,,

This is a lovely book about religious simplicity, an attempt to find holy things in lowly things, and an understanding of redemption. I'd read it years ago and still found it fabulous. One of my favorites.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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A great read

I've enjoyed many Laurie R King books including the Mary Russell stories , and the Folly stories. I'm very happy to be introduced to Kate Martinelli a San Francisco homicide detective. Although this is the second book in the series , it is the first one I have read, and I think it was a great one to start with. I love the quirky characters, and I'm impressed with the depth of knowledge of various sources including Shakespeare and the Christian Bible. All in all, another excellent read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Yawn

Very slow moving and boring book.
The only good thing I can say about the book is the person reading the book was ok.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The least interesting of King’s novels

Although well researched and written, I did not find the novel note worthy. King’s considerable talents are best realized in the Sherlock Holmes and young wife Russell series. In the later she excels in creating mystery from both male and female perspectives.

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entertaining

it's well written and narrator it's great. the story line is slow but gets better.

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Not as good as the first book

This book did not live up to the first in the series. It was a good police procedural, not as high octane as I was hoping for, hope to find what was missing in the next in the series.

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Very Disappointed!

I am struggling to finish this book. I have read all of Laurie R King's books except this series. I do not like "Kate Martinelli." This is a good example of why people do not like or trust police.

  • Overall

captivating

captivating story with wonderful characters. I couldn't wait to find out how the characters developed.

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A powerful story of the sacred fool

Only Laurie R King would come up with such an unusual and wonderful theme for a mystery. It was interesting to hear the instructions in the early part of the book to turn the tape over. It took me back to my early days of listening to audio books on tape. This book definitely puts itself in a particular time and place that being SanFrancisco before the turn of the the century. This book is one to read more than once.

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  • Tammia
  • GREENVILLE, TX, United States
  • 01-22-15

Great book with sound problems

Would you try another book from Laurie R. King and/or Alyssa Bresnahan?

Yes the book was very good

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

mostly

Any additional comments?

The sound quality was terrible with a distracting shadow sound in the background.