In the silent pre-dawn city hours - alone with his thoughts about Rina Lazarus, the woman he loves, 3,000 miles away in New York - L.A.P.D. detective Peter Decker finds a small child, abandoned and covered in blood that is not his. It is a sobering discovery, and a perplexing one, for nobody in the development where she was found steps forward to claim the little girl. Obsessed more deeply by this case than he imagined possible, Decker is determined to follow the scant clues to an answer.But his trail is leading him to a killing ground where four bodies lie still and lifeless. And by the time Rina returns, Peter Decker is already held fast in a sticky mass of hatred, passion, and murder - in a world where intense sweetness is accompanied by a deadly sting.
Mitch Greenberg adopts a straightforward, down-to-earth narrative tone for Faye Kellerman's third outing in the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus mystery series. While out for a late night walk and worrying whether or not Orthodox Jewish widow Rina Lazarus will marry him, Decker comes upon a 2-year-old, out alone, covered in blood and bee stings. Greenberg uses subtle vocal changes to distinguish minor characters from one another and is especially effective with women's and toddler's voices. His New York City and Yiddish accents are spot-on, and, as the mystery of the child's identity unfolds, Greenberg keeps the humanity real and the tension high.
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The story is acturally a good one...I don't know if reader is given an exact script...this has so many He said She said and He asked She asked that it becomes so annoying you want to scream......get rid of that format and you have a keeper.......
Detective Pete Decker finds a little girl on patrol one night, and in his quest to find out who she is and who she belongs to, uncovers a grisly quadruple murder scene.
This is a tough review to write. The overall mystery involving the little girl and the murders was good, and the only real reason I kept listening. But, and this is a big one for me, Pete Decker is a pig. He's verbally abusive to his fiancee on several occasions, and treats her like she's a little girl. "You only talk to other men if I'm with you" "You can't handle my car, take the Jeep instead, it's easier to drive" and to another detective "Don't talk like that in front of my woman. She's too good to hear that language". It was ridiculous and really hard to read. Well, hear. There were a lot of characters portrayed as really backwoods, and the n-word was sprinkled liberally throughout the story, making me cringe every time I heard it. I understand that people who think and talk like that exist, but not in my world. It's not something I hear a lot.
The way women are treated in general in this book is bothersome. Even Decker's partner, Detective Marge Dunn, is referred to as "little lady" constantly, and told to wait in the car while Decker does the dirty work, or pointedly ignored while "the men are talking". There are several references to "those women's libbers" as well. I'm trying really hard to put this in the context of when it was written, but it was published in 1990. And while I have no doubt this attitude was still present at the time, I don't recall it being quite as blatant as it is here.
(Side thought - The time the book was set was a little confusing to me. It was published in 1990 - is it set there, as well? It seemed to me that it was; there were beepers and pay phones, but also rotary phones at the station. If that's the case, given the fact that the Pete/Rina series is still being published, are all the books set in the early 90s? Or are they present day? Do Pete and Rina age in real time, or do they stay about where they are in this book while the world around them changes? I guess I won't know unless I keep reading, but Pete was born in 1950, so he'd be in his early 60s in 2013. That seems well past the standard 20 or 25 years most cops put in. But if Kellerman keeps him in his 40s, that would change a lot of the dynamic, since Pete's experiences in Vietnam had a huge impact in making him who he is, as they did everyone involved. And his caveman attitude would have to undergo some major changes in order for him to fit in in 2013.)
Pete's one saving grace to me is that by the end of the book, he seemed to realize that he has some anger issues and is a pig at times, and he seemed to want to make a genuine effort to change. That's the one reason I'll read at least one more in this series. I'll at least give him a chance to redeem himself.
The narration of this book was somewhat off-putting. Enough that I'll probably just read any more in this series, not listen to them, at least not if they're narrated by Mitch Greenberg. His reading of the main characters was fine, but all of the male side characters sounded like Rodney Dangerfield. Every one of them. Some times a straight Rodney, sometimes a hillbilly Rodney, sometimes a southern Rodney, but all of them sounded like Rodney. And there were several bizarre musical breaks in the audio. I have no idea what was happening with those. They weren't between chapters or scenes, or parts, and they weren't consistent. Suddenly I'd just be listening to 30-45 seconds of weird music, then back to the story.
Overall, I listened to this as fast as I could because I wanted to get through it and find out the answer to the murder mystery, but not because I was enjoying my listening experience. I'd recommend it only to people who really want to read this series, though.