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BEST BET BOOK OF 2013
Return to the Williamsburg neighborhood in Brooklyn and catch up with
former cop_turned schoolteacher, Raymond Donne, whom readers first met in Sacrifice
Fly. The sequel is Crooked Numbers, a baseball term referring
to when a team – say the Boston Red Sox – scores two or more runs in an
inning. This time Ray becomes involved in investigating a former student’s
murder and another teenager’s suicide. Are the tragic deaths connected or
coincidental? Although Ray’s “catcher’s interference” annoys the police, Ray
made a promise to the murdered boy’s mother and he intends to keep it. Search
with Ray as he pursues the truth by talking to a gang leader, visiting an Upper
West Side private school, bird-watching in Central Park and analyzing
pharmaceuticals. If you enjoy mysteries set in New York and with diverse
characters, then this latest Raymond Donne story is a double straight up the
When one of Raymond Donne's former students is found stabbed to death under the Williamsburg Bridge, Ray draws on his past as a cop to find the truth in Tim O'Mara's second New York mystery.
Raymond Donne's former student Douglas Lee had everything going for him thanks to a scholarship to an exclusive private school in Manhattan, but all of that falls apart when his body is found below the Williamsburg Bridge with a dozen knife wounds in it. That kind of violence would normally get some serious attention from the police and media except when it's accompanied by signs that it could be gang related. When that's the case, the story dies and the police are happy to settle for the straightforward explanation. Dougie's mom isn't having any of that and asks Ray, who had been a cop before an accident cut his career short, to look into it, unofficially. He does what he can, asking questions, doling out information to the press, and filling in some holes in the investigation, but he doesn't get far before one of Dougie's private school friends is killed and another is put in the hospital.
What kind of trouble could a couple of sheltered kids get into that would end like that? And what does is have to do with Dougie's death? None of it adds up, but there's no way Ray can just wait around for something to happen.
Following on the heels of his acclaimed debut, Tim O'Mara's Crooked Numbers is another outstanding mystery that brings the streets of Brooklyn and Manhattan to life and further solidifies O'Mara's place among the most talented new crime fiction writers working today.
“O'Mara's intricate plot delivers an exciting look at the inner workings of education and the economic boundaries that separate people… [and is] enhanced by strong characters.” —Oline H. Cogdill, Sun Sentinel
“O'Mara never hits a wrong note in his suspenseful sequel to Sacrifice Fly.” —Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
“A gripping mystery that enlivens the streets of Brooklyn, Crooked Numbers carves O'Mara a place among the most talented of contemporary crime writers.” —Brooklyn Daily Eagle
“Everyone's favorite teacher/sleuth from Sacrifice Fly has returned in Tim O'Mara's latest mystery, Crooked Numbers… I hope and pray that in the real world there are teachers like Raymond Donne and that the author is working on another novel in this unique series.” —Gumshoe Review
“An authentically gritty debut crime novel . . . rich in hard-boiled New Yorkese.” —The New York Times on Sacrifice Fly
“Intriguing debut . . . Strong characters enhance the sturdy plot . . . Sacrifice Fly deserves an A-plus.” —Oline H. Cogdill, Sun-Sentinel, on Sacrifice Fly
“In New York City schoolteacher O'Mara's debut novel, he writes what he knows.” —New York Post on Sacrifice Fly