2nd Moe Prager Book (2004)
In Redemption Street, ex-NYPD officer and freshly minted PI Moe Prager travels up to a decaying Boscht Belt hotel to uncover the truth behind a decades old fire that killed seventeen people, including his high school crush. Away from his beloved Brooklyn and out of his element, Moe finds that the locals aren't as eager to dredge up the painful past or to stir up the embers of that long dead fire as he seems to be. In fact the cast of locals - a washed-up comedian, an ambitious politician, a corrupt cop, a pint-sized Hitler, the leader of a mysterious Jewish cult - seem rather intent on doing their level best to make certain the circumstances surrounding the fire stay buried along with the charred bodies of the dead. Moe Prager's gift, however, is coaxing secrets out of the silent past.
WHERE TO BUY
Also available as a recorded book at audible.com, and as an ebook:
THE PAGE 69 TEST
Go here to see the results of the page 69 test on Redemption Street.
Set in 1981, Coleman's fast-paced sequel to Walking the Perfect Square (2002) will please fans of both hard-boiled and traditional mysteries. A retired cop with an inactive PI license, Prager is happily bored in his new incarnation as a Manhattan wine merchant, husband and new father. Residual ambivalence about his choice to help cover up the disappearance of his wife's beloved brother leads Prager to reconsider his initial refusal to take on another quest for a missing sibling—Arthur Rosen's search for the sister widely believed to have died in a fire at a Catskill resort 15 years earlier. When an arrogant and shadowy real estate magnate attempts to bribe him to refuse the case, Prager leaves his family and job to try to unearth the truth about the fatal blaze, which claimed 16 lives and was officially blamed on a careless bedtime smoker. He finds that the conflagration marked the point at which the small town of Old Rotterdam began its decline and that his questions stir up ill feeling from the locals, who include mysterious neo-Nazis and a group of Jews who call themselves the Yellow Stars. Prager's dogged pursuit leads to a satisfying and logical solution, while demonstrating Coleman's gift for blending a classic whodunit with a gritty, realistic procedural. Prager is a fascinating creation, believably grappling with his status as an unaffiliated and unobservant Jew, with ample room for greater growth. (Mar. 22) - Publishers Weekly
What a pleasure to have [Redemption Street] finally in paperback. In a field crowded with blowhards and phony tough guys, Reed Farrel Coleman's hero stands out for his plainspoken honesty, his straight-no-chaser humor and his essential humanity. Without a doubt, he has a right to occupy the barstool Matt Scudder left behind years ago. In fact, in his quiet unassuming way, Moe is one of the most engaging private eyes around. - Peter Blauner, Edgar Award-winning author of Slow Motion Riot and Slipping into Darkness
One of the most daring writers around. . . . He freely admits his love of poetry and it resonates in his novels like the best song you'll ever hear. Plus, he has a thread of compassion that breaks your heart to smithereens . . . He writes the books we all aspire to. -Ken Bruen, Shamus Award-winning author
Reed Farrel Coleman makes claim to a unique corner of the private detective genre with Redemption Street. With great poignancy and passion he constructs a tale that fittingly underlines how we are all captives of the past. - Michael Connelly, New York Times best-selling author of The Overlook
Moe Prager is a family man who can find the humanity in almost everyone he meets; he is a far from perfect hero, but an utterly appealing one. Let's hope that his soft heart and lively mind continue to lure him out of his wine shop for many, many more cases. -Laura Lippman, author of Life Sentences and What the Dead Know
Moe Prager is the thinking man's PI. He's a reluctant but dogged investigator, a family man even when the family's irritating (or worse), and a straight-ahead ex-cop willing to spend some mental energy on questions of loyalty, love, and religion. The case he works in Redemption Street is sad, tangled, and fascinating, and his company is a pleasure. -SJ Rozan, author of Winter and Night
Reed Farrel Coleman goes right to the darkest corners of the human heart-to the obsessions, the tragedies, the buried secrets from the past. Through it all he maintains such a pure humanity in Moe Prager-the character is as alive to me as an old friend. I flat out loved the first Prager book, but somehow he's made this one even better. -Steve Hamilton, author of Blood Is the Sky