Sunday, November 20, 2011

Author Dennis Palumbo has fashioned a dark, twisted tale of political chicanery of the finest order.  Dan Rinaldi, a Pittsburgh-based psychologist, is on call to the city police department. He helps interact with citizens who have experienced severe trauma, but may have vital information that will help the police solve the latest affront to society.  When the story opens, a bank robbery has gone terribly wrong.  Death has occurred and one of the robbers has apparently escaped.  The only eyewitness insight into the  sequence of events and then the current situation when Rinaldi arrives at the bank, seems to be the witness of a traumatized woman named Treva Williams.

At the request of detective Eleanor Lowery, Rinaldi does a curb-side interview with Williams, sitting on the curb in Pittsburgh’s blazing summer heat. He then then joins the SWAT team inside the bank.  By the time readers join the major characters in the bank, we are already tangled in a cleverly constructed plot with more than the usual twists and surprises. Each of the characters is nicely identified and each is maintained in a consistent manner, which adds immeasurably to the enjoyment of the novel.

 There are more than a few twists and cliff hangers in this  novel, as well as a couple  of subplots that have little to do with the main thrust of the story, other than to fill out the characters of some of the characters.  All in all, a nicely packaged story with enough bumps and twists to satisfy the most demanding reader. I expect to see more strong crime fiction from this author.

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