- Series: Decker/Lazarus Novels (Book 19)
- Hardcover: 432 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow; 1 edition (August 3, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061702560
- ISBN-13: 978-0061702563
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (364 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,147,934 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hangman: A Decker/Lazarus Novel (Decker/Lazarus Novels) Hardcover – August 3, 2010
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If you’re a Kellerman fan, especially of her best-selling and long-running series featuring LAPD Detective Peter Decker and his wife, Rina Lazarus, this latest entry, again mixing police procedural and family drama, should fill the bill. If you’re new to Kellerman, though, this is not the place to start. Kellerman works primarily in dialogue, with very sketchy narrative support, which requires readers unfamiliar with the backstory to act as their own detectives, figuring out what the heck is going on in each scene. The plot maintains a breakneck pace—we move from the Deckers at dinner getting a call from a distressed teen to the teen’s revelation that his parents are missing from their hotel to the further revelation that Decker worked on a homicide case 15 years ago in which the now-absent father falsely confessed to murdering his high-school sweetheart, went to jail, and emerged as a hired killer. There goes dinner. Decker and Lazarus have to track down all these moving pieces. Meanwhile, a neonatal nurse with a wild private life is found brutally murdered. Naturally, we have to confront the fact that there may be a serial killer at work. Fans of Joseph Wambaugh will find a very different LAPD here—less credible and certainly far less funny—than the one he presents. Still, the family-drama side of this series is its main appeal to fans, and that’s what will get them through a less-than-stellar effort. --Connie Fletcher
Praise for Faye Kellerman: / 'Kellerman is an excellent writer' The Times / 'Very exciting' Daily Mail / 'Brutal but thoughtful and well-plotted, fast-moving and well told' Observer / 'Sensational' Mirror / 'Kellerman creates a claustrophobic atmosphere, against a background of seediness, violence and distrust' Sunday Telegraph / 'Kellerman moves her gritty mean streets LA plot along with breakneck pace' Irish Independent --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
I have basically read all of Faye Kellerman's books and she is traditionally "hit or miss" with me, although I quite enjoyed her last book.
Hangman,however, is rating a 3 stars because it is so painfully slow. While I am aware that Kellerman's books are better known for being "procedurial" as opposed to "action packed" - Hangman isn't even as much about procedure as it is about going on and on about - basically nothing.
While the first few pages were interesting, the middle of the book is basically a search that never seems to end - especially since they don't seem to discover any clue and I mean absolutely nothing to advance the story or the plot.
Although I like that they incorporated Hannah a lot more in this one, I was at page 200 - and realized that absolutely nothing of interest had yet to happen - and it would be a while until any kind of activity would "stir" this book at all.
I also keep wondering why, everytime, the Madge character is introduced, the author feels the need to describe what she is wearing. While she tends to do this a little bit with Rinna, she never does it with the male leads - its just a little weird.
Kellerman's writing is engaging - I like the way she writes in that it is always down to earth and clearly understandable - but boy this one is slow.
I think this book was in sore need of a good editor. There were many instances where words were left out or repeated twice. I am a fast reader, and these were like stop signs on the road, or scratches on a DVD. Very distracting. The pacing of this book seemed off, and I have never read a Kellerman book that was so lacking in suspense throughout the entire story. I know that her novels are heavier on the procedural aspects than some, but jeesh this was ridiculous. Give me something to keep those pages turning other than curiosity about a 13 year old piano genius. Facts were often repeated, and different characters seemed to say the same things over and over again.
I wanted more Rina in this one. She's a great character and I wish we would have seen more of her along with other members of Pete's family. They had almost no role to play except for limited involvement with the Gabe/Chris sub-plot. Speaking of which, I really wish we could have had more of that story! It was way more interesting than the main crime plot involving Garth/Adrienne/Crystal. I didn't care a whit about any of those characters, while Gabe, Chris and Terry were all very interesting and I felt vested in finding out their fates.
The writing was a big disappointment. Dialogue was stilted in spots, and I became extremely frustrated when every chapter or section ended with a cliched tag line that was usually very corny and melodramatic. Marge's dialogue here was the worst offender. Marge used to be an actual person, but in this book she seemed reduced to a caricature, and all we learned about her was what she was wearing. I was really tired of hearing about her clothes and hearing her utter cliches that seemed to be straight off Law and Order.
The ending resolved all outstanding issues, but did so in a way that was not dramatic and very unsatisfying. I am sad to say that I will be very cautious about picking up another Decker/Lazarus mystery. This series seems to have lost its heart. Not a recommend.
There are enough twists and turns here to keep the most dedicated mystery fan on his or her toes. For those of us who care about Kellerman's characters, they are all here. From Decker and Lazarus' family too my favorite bad Guy Chris Donatti this book has them all.
Welcome back Dr. Kellerman
I thought when I began the book that the mystery part was going to be a little better also but it got so boring, and went on and on with nothing happening. I didn't enjoy any interaction with Chris as he was just so menacing, especially with his repeated comments about what he would do when he found Terry. I don't know how Peter was able to figure out what happened with her, it was a pretty big leap.
I really liked that they took Gabe in, though I wish they had addressed that more in depth as well, how Gabe felt. All he seemed to ever say was that he loved/hated his parents and the Deckers were nice. Really nice. Really really nice. This is lazy writing. I agree with the one who questioned the constant mentioning of what Marge and Rina wore. I want to know what everyone thinks and feels in the slice of their lives that is the book, not what they wear and eat.