Death Angel. Linda Fairstein. Penguin Group (USA). July 2013. 384 pp. hbk. ISBN #: 9780525953876.
A young girl is found murdered in Central Park near a famous statue called, “Angel of the Waters.” The reader slowly begins to realize how huge this park is and more amazing is that the entire nineteen acres of the park was totally planned and man-made, paid for private donors who valued this as a spot of beauty and culture that would become famous world-wide. It’s a favorite spot for both local residents, people from out of state and tourists from around the world. But now it’s become a place of death for more than one young woman, and the “Angel of Death” is tied to an ancient Seneca tribe that lived here before it became Central Park. That connection is what begins to lead to the actual murderer after a long, hard, complicated journey for Alexandra (“Coop”) Cooper and her colleagues, Mercer Wallace and Mike Chapman.
Two sub-plot threads are just as engaging, one involved a psycho Judge who believes Coop has stolen Mike Chapman from her romantic interests. The Judge is willing to ruin Coop’s career and threatens her and Mike. It’s fascinating that rumor has it Coop and Mike have been lovers and yet that has never been even an inkling – until now the idea begins to creep up as a minute possibility. Coop, however, is no wimp and takes on the Judge in a style that will make readers roar with laughter and raised fists!
The other sub-plot concerns a disappearing child of a very famous New York family, the grief it left behind, the secret theories about that disappearance and the unraveling of the mystery of the kidnapper who created a memorable tragedy that no other human ever knew was the final outcome.
Linda Fairstein crafts a spot-on, dynamic, step-by-step, clue by clue mystery or criminal investigation that keeps the reader absolutely riveted on every page, never lagging and never doubting that the savvy characters, despite their deepest flaws, will get the job done. It’s a tough job as can be realized through this reading but one whose sacrifices are all the more noble, as well as difficult, because of the costs that lead to safe, secure outcomes. Very, very nicely done, Linda Fairstein and highly recommended.