Investigative reporter Carter Ross returns to chase the case of the vanished city councilor. After all, who says white men can’t jump?
The star reporter for the Newark Eagle-Examiner looks every inch the bred-in-the-bone, “can’t-dance-a-lick WASP.” Carter Ross himself would be the last to deny it. He parts his hair carefully, wears neatly ironed shirts, unfailingly white or blue, and is seldom seen without his tie knotted in the half-Windsor that’s become his signature. “Even white people tease me about how white I am,” he acknowledges, but that’s OK. In inner-city Newark, his journalistic stamping ground of choice, he flourishes. Carter’s authenticity works for him. He honestly likes the city, worn-down parts, broken people and all. Which explains why he can respond so empathically to grief-stricken Akilah Harris in her terrible time of trouble and make her story heart-tuggingly real to his readers. Never mind that it’s basically unreal, that her troubles have a basis other than the one she cited—that they’re tied directly to the disappearance of crooked Councilman Wendell “Windy” Byers, Akilah’s sweetie. Suddenly Carter finds himself confronting evil forces ruthlessly intent on inflicting serious harm. But street-smart Carter, appearances notwithstanding, has all the moves he needs to stay one step ahead. Or one jump.
A breezy, entertaining sequel to Parks’ well-received debut (Faces of the Gone, 2009).