Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Book Review: Hurt Machine
Moe Prager is at a crossroads in his life. The aging former NYPD cop turned detective is about to marry off his daughter Sarah and has found that he has been diagnosed with cancer. When his ex-wife Carmella steps back into his life and asks him to investigate the murder of her sister Alta, a NY EMT, things get more complicated. You see, Alta and another EMT Maya refused to give assistance to a dying Robert Tillman at an upscale eatery. The more Prager investigates into the case, the more he finds people aren’t willing to talk.
This was my first exposure to Coleman’s work and the Prager novels, and I have to say I enjoyed what I read. The case is hardly as cut-and-dried as one would expect. The deeper Prager digs into the case, the more complicated he finds things are. Just like life.
Coleman knows New York City well and gives the reader a good feel for the environment in which the characters move and live. He also seems to have a very strong handle on the tight-knit working communities of the police and the firefighters, both of which come into play in this novel. But, most importantly, Coleman knows how to create well-rounded characters that are interesting to the reader.