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Redemption Street Paperback – November 15, 2012
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About the Author
Reed Farrel Coleman is a New York Times bestselling author that has been called a "hard-boiled poet" by NPR's Maureen Corrigan and the "noir poet laureate" in The Huffington Post. He has published more than twenty-five previous novels, including novels in Robert Parker’s Jesse Stone series, the critically acclaimed Moe Prager series, and the Gus Murphy series. A three-time winner of the Shamus Award, he has also won the Anthony, Macavity, Barry, and Audie Awards. He lives with his family on Long Island.
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I did find the back and forth to family cumbersome, contributing to the jerkiness of the first half. And the deal of the secret about what happened to his wife's brother confusing since it was revealed in Walking the Square.
The exploration of his Jewishness did explore Mose's soul searching, and revealed his character in a way that built Him better for future adventures.
I love PI novels. And it's so hard to find really good ones. This author has a unique love of the art of PI-ness. I know what that is because I've been one and written them. And I'm an avid student of this uniquely honorable exploration of the battle between good and evil that is so real in the world.
Bottom line: I liked it and appreciate it for more than just a story.
I grew tired before the mid-point with Coleman's reflections on Jewish culture and his protagonist's struggle with his ethnic and religious background. It's a cold case kind of detective procedural but not one that is terribly gripping. The protagonist is tiresome in his repeating mishaps and also in his ruminations about how much he loves and misses his wife and infant daughter. It felt to me like this was mostly fill to turn a thin plot into a 200+ page novel. Given the emphasis that Coleman puts on the Jewish experience I have a hunch that I won't be seeking out his other novels, especially those that deal with this protagonist, Moe Prager. I'd say the same if an author was so taken with an Irish, Latino, or African-American experience. I don't read detective fiction so I can learn about other cultures, religions, etc. For this kind of awareness and information I go directly to nonfiction.
Growing up in Brooklyn, I share a lot of common ground with Moe Prager, which makes these books really fun to read. Even if this were not the case, I would enjoy the many plot twists that Reed Farrel Coleman has woven into his stories.
A great read for anyone interested in the private eye/mystery genre. Make sure to read the books in order!