Tuesday, September 4

The Burnt House - Faye Kellerman

When a commuter plane crashes just after takeoff, Detective Peter Decker rushes to the scene to help. All aboard are killed, as are many in the apartment building hit; seven weeks on, the site's still being sifted for debris and remains. When Decker recieves a phone call from grieving parents, convinced their flight attendent daughter was murdered, not killed in the crash, he begins a preliminary investigation. But obstacles obstruct him at every turn - the widower's less that cooperative, the airline's openly obstructive, the possible victim was having an affair, and her stepfather rings Deck every single morning.
When the skeletal remains of a young woman are found in the wreckage it seems as though Roseanne Dresden's been found after all. But the mystery deepens when forsensic dentistry reveas that the crumbling, fragile skull isn't Roseanne's, and there are no ther missing women from the flight or apartment. What happened to Roseanne, and whose skull has been hidden in the apartment basement since 1974?
I've throughly enjoyed every Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus novel, and The Burnt House is no exception. Kellerman expertly weaves the details of the mystery around the evolving family life of Peter, who met Rina in the very first novel (which I highly recommend), The Ritual Bath. Now that Rina's sons are older, they occupy less family life, leaving the stage to Rina and Peter's now-fourteen year old daughter Hannah, and Peter's eldest daughter and her new husband. And, as always, aspects fo their observant Judaism are also sown throughout the text, adding an extra dimension and depth to the writing. This is one series you shouldn't go past. - Alex

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