Doppelgangster (Esther Diamond Novel) Mass Market Paperback – January 5, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
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“Gleeful, clever... [Resnick] spins a witty, fast-paced mystery around her convincingly self-absorbed chorus-girl heroine." —Publishers Weekly
"An amusing urban fantasy starring a wonderful heroine surrounded by a horde of eccentrics, one straight cop, and one interfering matchmaking mom. The jocular story line is filled with a fast-paced frenzy from the first magical mugging until the last as Esther proves once again to be a reader's best friend with her misadventures in Manhattan mystical mayhem." —Midwest Book Review
"Dopplegangster is a joy from start to finish, with a sexy hero, a smart heroine (Does Laura Resnick write any other kind?), a fascinating plot, and a troop of supporting characters both lovable and otherwise. It's a wonderful blend of comedy and surprising suspense. If you haven't met Esther Diamond yet, then you're missing out on a lot of fun." —Linda Howard, New York Times Bestselling author
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It's a fun fast read, but I got SO SICK of the characters saying, "Doppleganster". There are a dozen synonyms, use some. The main character is hard to relate to in this book. Esther has been a quirky, flighty woman in previous books but in this one she is suddenly a hysterical, irrational stereotype. She hits a cop, she's told not to do that by a second cop, brushes off the warning and hits her ex again. Again she's warned about hitting a cop. Again she brushes off the warning in an irrational 'there are no consequences for MY actions' manner and hits him a third time. This is in the middle of a police raid, all the while she's screaming like a fish wife about her hurt feelings. Even Esther Diamond would recognize that this is a serious situation and that she can't get away with smacking her ex-bf cop in the middle of a police raid. But the author wants Esther in jail, so suddenly the main character is bat-sh*t crazy with no concept of personal responsibility. Throughout this book, it's just more of the same. Esther screaming, stomping her feet and acting irrationally and her sort of Ex grovels and begs. This nonsense ruined the story for me.
When Esther's favorite wiseguy customer Chubby Charlie Chiccante is gunned down in front of her after seeing his mystical doppelganger, she's drawn deeply into a web of magical intrigue and the mobster underworld. Who is creating the magical doppelganger assassins that threaten to start an all out mob war between New York's notorious crime families? And can she stop it before she ends up sleeping with the fishes too?
Doppelgangster is an energetic gangster tale with elements of the paranormal that is both witty and hilarious. At first, I didn't know what to expect when starting it. Was it a paranormal? Was it a mystery? Was it a thriller? Was it a romance? I was so pleasantly surprised to find that it was all of these things and more. Diving into Doppelgangster was like getting the best piece of the pie and slowly savoring each bite.
Resnick is in her element with Doppelgangster's dialogue. She's a powerhouse with it. The funny and engaging mobsterisms are rampant, clever, and her character interactions are simply gut busting. In fact the two most important aspects of Resnick's tale are the originality of her idea and the brilliant character interactions. Esther, paired with Lucky, Max, and Nelli at the behest of the Gambello's shy don makes this one of the funniest books I've read this year. I laughed non-stop throughout this book.
There is a small thread of romance between Esther and her slurpalicious detective Lopez. But so far, the mobster shenanigans ensuing have firmly placed the lovers on opposite camps: Lopez on the side of the law and Esther helping the "family". While this tenuous thread between the two of them was smoking hot, I suspect that we'll be seeing more of sexy Detective Lopez in Resnick's next novel. Especially the barest hint that he might not be what he seems, and could be psychically gifted.
If you want to truly be entertained, (and laugh out loud frequently) and enjoy storytelling at its best, give Doppelgangster a whirl!
A Fiendishly Bookish Review
In Doppelgangster, Esther is involved with the mob and a semi-retired cuddly wise-guy named Lucky, as well as her mentor, Max, in all things strange (since supernatural is really a misnomer according to him) and of course her almost boyfriend, Conner Lopez, the straight-man or cop, of this comedic romp.
The story is fast pace, Laura Resnick does a great job of creating unusual characters that are believable and placing Esther is situations that leave you chuckling, even as you try to guess how she will solve the unique situation she is involved in. She leaves the reader wanting more, and really wanting to see Esther's "almost" boyfriend become something more.
Definitely worth the read!
Top international reviews
The book follows the heroine Esther Diamond as she negotiates the murky waters of showbiz and the magical side of the world she was introduced to in disappearing nightly. Esther is a very fun character - although she has the luck of Stephanie Plum and some of the humour, she is probably a bit more serious and dedicated. She certainly has clear personal goals (acting career), and is willing to work to get them.
The book runs a very good line between the humour and mystery. The main mystery is a strong point, with good motives and series of events. Add a dash of romance developing, quite a bit of danger, and some dashing characters and all in all it is a really good read. Looking forward to the next one.