Michael Dooley is a homicide cop with the instincts of a bulldog. When a woman’s body is found with signs of having been brutally tortured, he knows someone was being sent a message. This one has the Outfit all over it – but it’s his murder and he’s going to do what it takes to solve it, even though many of the CPD brass are a wholly owned subsidiary of the syndicate.
Sam Reaves does something amazing. He tells a complicated story with seeming simplicity and brings a time and place to life. He takes his time about it; at over 500 pages, we get to see Chicago and the life of a middle-aged cop and his family during a time of turmoil (he fears for his son who is fighting half a world away; his daughter finally gets up the nerve to announce she’s against the war; the Cubs are blowing a winning streak once again). Yet there’s no padding, just a clear, simple, straightforward story about a man who wants to do his job right.
A sort of prequel to Reaves’s excellent Dooley’s Back, this novel proves again that Reaves is a fine writer.