Friday, July 25, 2008

The Mercedes Coffin




Billionaire genius Genoa Greeves never got over the shocking death of her favorite teacher, Bennett "Dr. Ben" Alston Little, murdered execution-style and stuffed into the trunk of his Mercedes-Benz. No arrests were ever made, no killer charged for the brutal crime. Fifteen years later, the high-tech CEO reads about another execution-style murder; this time the victim is a Hollywood music producer named Primo Ekerling. There is no obvious connection, but the case is eerily similar to Little's and Genoa feels the time is right to close Dr. Ben's case once and for all—offering the L.A.P.D. a substantial financial "incentive" if justice is finally served for Little.
Lieutenant Peter Decker resents having to commit valuable manpower to a fifteen-year-old open case simply because a rich woman says "Jump!" Still, the recent murder of Primo Ekerling does bear a disturbing resemblance to Little's case, even though two thug suspects are currently behind bars for the Ekerling murder. Decker can't help but wonder about a connection. His first phone calls are to the two primary investigators in the Little case, retired detectives Calvin Vitton and Arnie Lamar. Lamar is cooperative, but Vitton is not only reluctant to talk, he winds up dead of a suspicious suicide twelve hours later. Plunging into this long-buried murder, Decker discovers that even though the two slayings are separated by a decade and a half, there is still plenty of greed, lust, and evil to connect the dots.
Decker's team of top investigators not only includes his favorite homicide detectives, Scott Oliver and Marge Dunn, but also his newly minted Hollywood detective daughter, Cindy Kutiel, whose help proves to be invaluable. His wife, Rina Lazarus, continues to be his backbone of support, offering a cool, rational outlook despite her growing concern for her husband's welfare and safety. Rina's worries and fears begin to build at a fevered pitch as past and present collide with a vengeance, catapulting an unsuspecting Peter Decker closer and closer to the edge of an infinite dark abyss.
A relentlessly gripping tale spun by a master, Faye Kellerman's The Mercedes Coffin races through a dangerous urban world of fleeting fame and false dreams, making heart-pumping hairpin turns at each step of a terrifying journey, where truth and justice are fine lines between life and death. (From Amazon)

Could there possibly be a connection between two murders 15 years apart? No one seems to think so until someone offers the LAPD a seven figure endowment if they are able to solve the 15 year old cold case. Even though Peter is a lieutenant, the chief assigns him to the case. Of course his top detectives Marge & Scott are there to help him. As well as his detective daughter Cindy. The going is tough at first, yet slowly but surely Peter and his team start connecting the dots and can't believe where it leads them. Has Peter pushed it to the limit one to many times??? I'm a huge fan of this series. I've read them all from book one. I love how the characters have grown along with each book - no soap opera rapid aging syndrome here. I can remember when Peter and Rina got married and had Hannah - and now she's got her license and has become her own person. The one thing I didn't like about this book was that Rina seems to have been turned into a boring cooking, cleaning and gardening housewife. She's not as active in this investigation as she usually is. Other than that - another great book by Ms. Kellerman.

7 comments:

Julie P. said...

Can't wait to read this one -- I love her books!

Becky LeJeune said...

I'm a big fan of Faye Kellerman, I was a bit disappointed with her last title, though. How does this one stack up in the grand scheme of things? Is it better than Burnt House? I just thought that one felt a little forced.

Literary Feline said...

I haven't read too much by Faye Kellerman (although I've read most of her husband's books), but I keep meaning to. I really enjoyed the one or two books I did read by her--both being her series books. Thanks for the great review, Lori!

bookfool said...

I was a bit disappointed in this one. It sort of annoyed me how Rina has been relegated to chief cook and baker. I liked the books where she is more prominent better.

lorisreadingcorner said...

I'm a huge fan of her books and have read them all as they came out :) I really enjoyed this book (much better than Burnt House!). I do agree with Kelly on the role that Rina played. I really wish she had played a more active role in helping Peter investigate instead of the happy homemaker.

Teddy Rose said...

Great review Lori. I posted a link on the ARC Challenge site on my blog.

bookinn said...

I read this also and had the same feelings about Rina being a non player . I thought it was also not as fast paced as her other books. Great review. I really like your blog too!