Winner of the Edgar Award for Best Novel of the Year: bestselling author Walter Mosley "is back with a whole new character to love...As gorgeous a novel as anything he's ever written" (Washington Post).
Joe King Oliver was one of the NYPD's finest investigators until he was framed for sexual assault by unknown enemies within the force. A decade has passed since his release from Rikers, and he now runs a private detective agency with the help of his teenage daughter. Physically and emotionally broken by the brutality he suffered while behind bars, King leads a solitary life, his work and his daughter the only lights. When he receives a letter from his accuser confessing that she was paid to frame him years ago, King decides to find out who wanted him gone and why.
On a quest for the justice he was denied, King agrees to help a radical black journalist accused of killing two on-duty police officers. Their cases intertwine across the years and expose a pattern of corruption and brutality wielded against the black men, women, and children whose lives the law destroyed. All the while, two lives hang in the balance: King's client's and his own.
"A wild ride that delivers hard-boiled satisfaction while toying with our prejudices and preconceptions." —Steph Cha, Los Angeles Times
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Dirty cops, corrupt bankers, and seedy lawyers are crime novel must-haves. And yet, after 40-plus books, Walter Mosley knows how to keep things fresh. With his lyrical staccato of sinewy prose, he delivers a noir plot that seethes with unsettling violence. Joe King Oliver is out to punish those who ended his career as a NYC detective, while also investigating the false conviction of a supposed cop killer. Are the two things connected? You might as well ask if getting shot in the gut hurts. Introducing another brilliantly hardboiled hero to his gallery of rogues, Mosley astounds with how much character and intrigue he packs into this briskly paced novel.
Former NYPD detective Joe King Oliver, now the owner-operator of King Detective Service, investigates two cases of gross injustice in this excellent standalone from MWA Grand Master Mosley (Charcoal Joe and 13 other Easy Rawlins novels). Thirteen years earlier, Oliver was convicted on bogus assault charges, which ended his police career and his marriage. He spent nine months in jail before the charges were dropped and he was released without explanation. Oliver now learns that a crooked cop was behind the frame. Meanwhile, he is approached by Willa Portman, an intern for the lawyer representing Leonard Compton, a militant journalist who's on death row for the murder of two policemen three years earlier. Portman says the killings were self-defense. Oliver, who faces a corrupt world with unflinching honesty and ruthlessness, enlists the aid of Melquarth Frost, a hardened career criminal, to even the odds in both cases. The novel's dedication to Malcolm, Medgar, and Martin underlines the difference that one man can make in the fight for justice.
Down the River unto the Sea
Enjoyable, interesting, even entertaining in spots, but cumbersome. This novel is not for first-time Mosley readers. It requires a lot of concentration because it presents a bit of a disjointed read.
Mr. Mosley is great. But, this is not one of his best.