Ten Years Gone | Book Review


Ten Years Gone brings together three things I love: Israel, mystery, and sequels. It is the first of four novels by Jonathan Dunsky featuring Adam Lapid, a private detective in post-Independence Tel Aviv. (By first, I mean that the events it narrates come first in the series. It was actually written third.) Having completed it, I’m already on to the next novel, The Dead Sister.

Lapid was a Jewish police detective in Hungary before World War II. His wife and children didn’t survive Auschwitz, but he did. After the Allies liberated Buchenwald, he stayed in Europe for a time, hunting down former Nazi officers and meting out vengeance. Then he immigrated to Palestine, joined the Haganah, and fought heroically in the War of Independence. After the war, he took up private detecting on the streets of Tel Aviv.

In that capacity, a German Jewess who was able to pass herself off as Gentile during the war comes to him with a request. In 1939, she had sent her son ahead with a friend to Palestine, hoping soon to follow in their steps. That didn’t happen. Ten years later, she can’t find either the woman or her son, so she hires Lapid to do so.

The problem? Both the woman and the boy were murdered in 1939. Lapid doesn’t have the heart to tell his client just yet, so instead, he reopens the case to solve their murders. Along the way, he uncovers secrets and lies involving the dead woman, her circle of acquaintances, and the Irgun, the radical group which worked hard in the pre-Independence era to speed both Jewish entry and British exit from Palestine…violently, if necessary.

The tale is competently told. It’s not at the level of Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch novels or Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon novels, but it’s good. My first rule for evaluating mysteries is that it must keep me turning pages to see what happens next. Ten Years Gonedid. I look forward to reading the other books in the series.

Book Reviewed
Jonathan Dunsky, Ten Years Gone: An Adam Lapid Mystery (Charleston, NC: CreateSpace, 2017).

P.S. If you found my review helpful, please vote “Yes” on my Amazon.com review page.

Two Kinds of Truth | Book Review


Two Kinds of Truth begins with the interruption of an interruption of an investigation. Retired from the LAPD, Harry Bosch is volunteering with the San Fernando police as a cold-case investigator. While working a 15-year-old unsolved mission person case, he is summoned to a meeting with an assistant district attorney as well as two LAPD detectives, one of whom is his former partner, Lucia Soto. They inform him that DNA evidence has reopened a homicide case he solved thirty years prior, suggesting that his investigation of it was tainted. In the middle of that meeting, he is summoned to the scene of a double homicide at a local pharmacy.

Who killed the two pharmacists? Did Bosch put the wrong man in jail? And what happened to the missing person? Those are the questions Harry Bosch sets out to answer in Michael Connelly’s twenty-second novel featuring him.

As always, Connelly has written a page turner. I finished it in two sittings. But I noticed that I wasn’t as excited about this novel as I was about his July 2017 book, The Late Show, which introduced LAPD detective Renée Ballard. I’m hoping—expecting—a second novel about her sometime next year. (Read my review of The Late Show here.)

Now, don’t get me wrong! If you like Harry Bosch, read Two Kinds of Truth. But now that Bosch is 67 years old, his career—even as a volunteer investigator—feels like it’s winding down. My guess is that Connelly has one more book planned for Bosch, one that solves a fourth mystery mentioned in this book, the brutal murder of a teenage girl. I look forward to that book, but I won’t be too sad if it’s Connelly’s last Bosch novel. He’s had a great run.

 

Book Reviewed
Michael Connelly, Two Kinds of Truth (New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2017).

P.S. If you found my review helpful, please vote “Yes” on my Amazon.com review page.

Review of ‘Vertigo 42: A Richard Jury Mystery’ by Martha Grimes


Vertigo-42Martha Grimes, Vertigo 42: A Richard Jury Mystery (New York: Scribner, 2014). Hardcover | Paperback | Kindle

Vertigo 42 is the twenty-third mystery novel Martha Grimes has written, and like the others, it is named after an English pub or bar, this one high atop a skyscraper in downtown London where the action begins. And like the others, Scotland Yard Superintendent Richard Jury sleuths the mystery with help from his friend, Melrose Plant (the former Lord Ardry); his sergeant, Alfred Wiggins; and the cast of characters (in every sense of the term) from Long Piddleton.

The mystery in this case consists of four deaths: Hilda Palmer’s, a nine-year-old who died at Tom and Tess William’s house twenty-two years previously; Tess Williamson’s, who died five years after that; Belle Syms, whose death occurs near the book’s outset; and a man whose death occurs not long after and not far from Ms. Syms. With the exception of the man, who died of gunshot wounds, it’s not clear whether the women’s deaths were accidents, suicides, or murders.

Did I mention Stanley the dog, the “descendant” of Victorian-scourge Lytton Strachey, and Melrose Plant’s fabulous lifestyle? No, well, they’re all there, making for a plot that slowly unwinds and then twists…then twists again. If you’ve read Martha Grimes’ previous Jury novels, don’t miss this one. If you haven’t, start with The Man With a Load of Mischief and work your way through.

—–

P.S. If you found my review helpful, please vote “Yes” on my Amazon.com review page.

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: