St. Martin's, August 2003, 24.95, 320 pp.
It is nine months since the tragic events of September 11th and Captain Bill Donovan, head of Special Investigations, is depressed, because he isn't part of the World Trade Center investigation. To cheer him up, his wife Marcy arranges a family outing at Coney Island that includes their three-year-old son Daniel. While waiting on a line at Nathan's to buy a “world famous”, he hears police sirens and decides to go to the nearby crime scene.
Business mogul James Victor is found murdered in the basement of a candy store and the owner has no idea how he got there or why he would even be in the basement. The storeowner was suing the victim who wanted to tear down the block and build an expensive housing resort. Donovan doesn't really suspect him because everything is too pat and there are plenty of other suspects who wanted the man dead. Imagine Donovan's surprise when the killing is tied to the September 11th attack, and the captain is able to contribute to the bigger inquiry while trying to nab the killer.
Every time Michael Jahn writes a police procedural starring Captain Bill Donovan it turns out to be an exciting page-turner and MURDER ON CONEY ISLAND is no exception. The author humanizes the protagonist by escorting the audience into his personal life and showing how the World Trade Center disaster hurt him personally and makes him want to be a part of the war on terrorism. The interesting twists that the plot takes will keep readers interested to the point that they finish this electrifying novel in one sitting.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner