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Synopsis: Homicide cop Tom McMichael is on the rotation when an 84-year-old city patriarch named Pete Braga is found bludgeoned to death. Not good news, especially since the Irish McMichaels and Portuguese Bragas share a violent family history dating back three generations. Years ago Braga shot McMichael's grandfather in a dispute over a paycheck; soon thereafter Braga's son was severely beaten behind a waterfront bar - legend has it that it was an act of revenge by McMichael's father. McMichael must put aside the old family blood feud, and find the truth about Pete Braga's death. Braga's beautiful nurse is a suspect - she says she stepped out for some firewood, but key evidence suggests otherwise. The investigation soon expands to include Braga's business, his family, the Catholic diocese, a multimillion dollar Indian casino, a prostitute, a cop, and, of course, the McMichael family.
Review: Why isn't T. Jefferson Parker as famous as, say, James Patterson or Robert B. Parker? He's that good, and in some ways better. In Cold Pursuit, his 11th novel, San Diego homicide cop Tom McMichael finds himself investigating the bludgeoning death of Pete Braga, a prominent city patriarch who was also a blood enemy of the McMichael family. It's a complex case fraught with political and economic pressures, ugly family history, police corruption, and multiple red herrings, made more complex by McMichael's romantic attraction to a key suspect.
Parker's writing is a pleasure from the first sentence to the last: intelligent, often quietly poetic, cliché-free, and as crisp and dry as a good Pinot Gris. Here is the book's opening paragraph, which accomplishes several scene-setting tasks while pleasing both ear and brain:
That night the wind came hard off the Pacific, an El Nino event that would blow three inches of rain onto the roofs of San Diego. It was the first big storm of the season, early January and overdue. Palm fronds lifted with a plastic hiss and slapped against the windows of McMichael's apartment. The digitized chirp of his phone sounded ridiculous against the steady wind outside.
At times the book's richly complex plot gets confusing, and some sections aren't especially suspenseful. However, every page is absorbing and affecting, and the ending is a shocker. Peopled by a teeming cast of full-blooded characters and set in a San Diego so vivid you can smell the beach and the blood, Cold Pursuit may be Parker's subtlest, most satisfying tale yet. --Nicholas H. Allison
Title: Cold Pursuit (Brilliance Audio on Compact ...
Publisher: brilliance Audio
Publication Date: 2003
Binding: Audio CD
Book Condition: Good
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