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Publisher's Summary

Three years ago Lew Fonseca quit his job as a process server with the State Attorney's Office in Cook County, Illinois, and drove his rattling Toyota south to escape the memories of his beloved late wife. Headed for Key West, the Toyota broke down in a Dairy Queen parking lot in Sarasota, Florida. Buoyed by the friendship of a few trustworthy souls, Lew settled there, making ends meet by doing some investigative work for local attorneys. Now, Lew is hired by Carl Sebastian, one of Lew's lawyer's clients, to find his missing wife. Following up on a few leads, Lew finds himself being trailed by a mysterious burly man, and saddled with another missing person case, this time a runaway teen. With the help of some friends, Lew seems to be getting closer and closer to Melanie, but will he find her before the unthinkable happens?
©1999 Double Tiger Productions, Inc. (P)2001 Books on Tape, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"Staked with vivid characters and plenty of local color...Lew has a real future ahead of him." (The New York Times Book Review)
"Kaminsky pulls of climatic suspense for each [mystery]. The biggest news, though, is his depressed little Lancelot in Levi's, who's worth at least a dozen more installments." (Kirkus Reviews)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Donald on 04-09-06

The melancholy server

The trouble with Lou Fonesca stories is that they end. This is the fourth I've listened to but actually the first in the series.
I love the local colour, personality development and reasonably good story lines.
This is my favorite audible detective series.
My favorite read detective series is still Ross MacDonald's Lew Archer.
I won't cross gendres and read Fonesca or listen to Archer as I wouldn't want to choose.
There are similarities. Warm climates, urban deterioration often in the midst of affluence, islands of decent humanity in sea of human corruption, good guys that can be brave and tough without vulgarity.
For this audible listener Fonesca is the winner

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Ted on 09-17-17


Uh-Huh.... That's not a misspelling up there. There's nothing here I expected. Which I should have expected since I'm a fan boy of 5 of 6 of Kaminsky's Abe Lieberman's books (all of the first six except Lieberman's Thief - see my review to understand my pique)... And since there are no more Liebermans here at Audible, well I'm poking into his other stuff with 'Vengeance'.

And it was unexceptional. Which I should have expected since Kaminsky's such a talent. But who could expect Lou Fonesca? And I won't tell you why, since then you will expect what I've told you and well, that'd ruin a very good listen. And you'd expect the pace, tone, and glimmers in the construction of this plot. Or plots.

What was most unexpected for me though was Scott Brick. I did not notice he was the reader when I bought this book, else I'd have passed. Surprisingly Brick didn't impose himself into the book with his signature pomposities. Instead, they're gone leaving behind the man's undeniable talent for creating mood and characterizations. Maybe I'll try another .... but only if it's with an author I trust like Kaminsky.

While not a great book, nor on par with the Lieberman novels, I'll still follow Fonseca's growth in this series. Because Kaminsky's unexceptionally good.

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5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Donal on 05-26-07

A change of tone.

I didn't think I would like this book at first. I'm a big fan of Stuart Kaminsky's Toby Peters books. They are light, funny and a glorious, if at times surreal, glimpse of 1940s Hollywood. His new hero, Lou Fonesca, a refugee from the grief of his wife's death at the hands of a hit-and-run driver who was never caught, is only barely coming back to life some five years later. Fonesca's reaction to bereavement, not uncommon, was to run away from his Chicago home. He eventually arrived in the Florida town of Sarasota where his car finally dies, so he stays. And he finds that you always bring your grief with you, no matter how far you run. On this depressing premise, Kaminsky has based a sympathetic and entertaining character.
The perfectly judged reading by Scott Brick brings Fonesca's weary 1st person narration to life without falling into sentimentality. Fonesca is a person we care about, and the small group of characters, friends he is slowly making as he begins to rebuild his life, are equally sympathetic.
This is not a deep, psychological book (though as someone who has worked extensively with bereavement, I found Fonesca's situation ringing true). It is an entertaining story ? detective fiction with a human face at its best. Stuart Kaminsky's books seem to lend themselves to being read out loud and this makes a perfect audiobook.
There are only 3 Kaminsky novels available on Audible UK ? buit 17 available on the US site where we cannot access them. Come on, Audible UK, let's have more Kaminsky, and soon.

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