Death of a Russian Priest Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Death of a Russian Priest

Stuart Kaminsky is a successful American writer (of “The Rockford Files”
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and two other mystery series) and his Inspector Rostnikov series is one of the best in
current fiction. With the inspector, we are given a thorough look at Moscow during and
since the fall of the Iron Curtain. However, Kaminsky's works are not political sermons,
as he aspires--and succeeds quite nicely--to portray his characters in real, human
reflections. In “Death of a Russian Priest,” readers find the venerable Inspector
(known as “Washtub” by his adversaries due to his penchant for lifting weights), sent to
Arkush to investigate the death of a local priest, one who was quite outspoken and one
whose death has created quite a commotion. Solving the priest's death is not as simple an
investigation as it appears and Kaminsky is up to the task as he brings in all the factors
and implications that such a death evokes: political, religious, social, and, quite
importantly in modern Russia, the criminal element. Kaminsky does not hesitate to show
the former Soviet Union in a serious (and chaotic) state. This is not the first in the
Rostnikov episodes. And in this one, Kaminsky stays with his “cast of characters”: the
rock-hard and incorruptibly devoted Karpo (alias “the Vampire”), Sasha Tkach, the
handsome yet vulnerable and sometimes impulsive “youngster” of the team, and
Rostnikov's wife among others.

As usual, there is more than one crime to be solved and by the book's end, all loose ends are
tied up. Rostnikov's wit, his intellect, his complete understand of the intricacies of modern
Moscow, and in particular the police department, make compelling reading. This series,
which continues, is perhaps one of the most intriguing around. It is not a series to miss, if
one is into a central character that is complex, humane, and at times possesses a clever
sense of humor. Kaminsky's writing style keeps the story line moving at an energetic pace.
And he certainly seems to grasp the real Russia today.

The review of this Book prepared by Bill Hobbs

Chapter Analysis of Death of a Russian Priest

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Plot & Themes

Tone of story    -   very upbeat Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book The crook is....    -   criminal's rise in a crime organization Crime Thriller    -   Yes Is MAIN CHARACTER an EVIL criminal?    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   government investigator


City?    -   Yes City:    -   Dirty, dangerous (like New York)

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   moderately detailed references to deaths Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Death of a Russian Priest

Stuart Kaminsky Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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