From the back cover:
When the body of a local teenager is found in a community garden, detective Gus Ramone relives intense memories of a twenty-year old case. Back when he was a rookie, Ramone and his partner "Doc" Holiday assisted legendary detective T.C. Cook in the investigation of a series of murders involving young victims. The killer, dubbed the "Night Gardener", was never caught.
The fierce sense of anger, regret, and purpose that once burned among these three men comes rushing back as they race to vanquish the monster who has stalked their dreams. For Cook, now retired, it means solving one of the few cases that eluded him. For Holiday, whose career as a cop was derailed, it's one last chance to redeem himself. For Ramone, catching the killer means not only doing his job but knowing that his own teenage son, who is a friend of the dead boy, won't be the next victim.
The number of characters in this book is almost overwhelming but the three cops are the main focus of the book. Pelecanos delves deeply into the lives of these three and how their being a cop defined them. I liked the way Pelecanos set up the scenario with the introduction of the characters right at the first crime scene. The book then fast forwards 20 years and we see where the characters' lives have taken them and how they intersect at the new crime investigation.
The book flows at an even but somewhat leisurely pace, almost mirroring a real investigation, as pieces of the puzzle are fit into place and then another one and so on. Pelecanos also gives the reader an indepth look at the personal lives of the three men and the interactions with their families. I think this is one factor that gives the book such authenticity. Although there is no dramatic denoument at the finale, the end is almost a reiteration of the beginning. Pelecanos takes the reader back to the original crime scene, but this time we see who the murderer is. Interesting treatment of a crime and the ensuing investigation.
Since I had never read any of Pelecanos' books before, I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was very pleased to see how Pelecanos let the reader into the heads of the characters. The supporting characters are fully fleshed out giving the book a very believable feel. His masterful use of local dialect gives an extra dose of reality. Even though the book is more police procedural and character study than a traditional mystery, this book held my attention to the end. 4****
For Author's website see here.
Now for the GIVEAWAY. Hachette is so generous in allowing me to give away 5 copies of the book. Only US and Canada, please and no P.O. boxes.
4 Copies selected by random.org and 1 copy to INSTANT WINNER. This has been won by Serena of Savvy Verse and Wit.
July 2nd at 5 PM is the deadline to enter. Good luck!
For your official entry: leave a comment with your e mail contact, please.
For 3 bonus entries: become a public follower. Friends Google connect. Already one? That counts!
For 1 more bonus entry: put link to contest in your sidebar.
Aaron, Aidan, Alberto, Alden, Alfredo, Alfred, Alphonse, Alonso, Alvin, Angus, Angelo, Archer, Andre, Armand, Arnold, Arturo, Aubrey, Augustus, Austin, Ambrose, Avery, Antoine, or Antonoio
***Please, I beg you, only one (1) comment box is necessary, just leave a little space between your answer and your bonus entry comments. Also be sure to leave an e mail address so I can contact you when you win!
A big thank you to Valerie at Hatchette Book Group for a review copy of this book.