An NYC private eye encounters unexpected violence when he searches for a missing teenaged misfit.
A few years after he lost his wife and infant son in a subway accident, the life of writer-turned-detective Terry Orr (Tribeca Blues, 2003, etc.) is keeping steady company with assistant DA Julie, whom he helps out on some cases while still shying away from commitment. Instead, Terry’s life revolves around his teenage daughter Bella, whose life in turn revolves around basketball. When Allie Powell, a friend of Bella’s friend Elixa, turns up missing, Terry agrees to nose around. The artistic Allie aspired to a design career and took classes part-time at Manhattan’s Fashion Institute of Technology. To save on commuting from his home in Silver Haven, New Jersey—and, Terry later learns, to avoid the war between his wealthy parents—Allie stayed with venerable family friend John McPorter, who seems neither surprised nor alarmed about the boy’s absence. McPorter mentions a recent burglary of his safe but stops short of implicating Allie. After stirring up a hornet’s nest in Silver Haven, Terry returns to find McPorter impaled on the spikes of the cast-iron fence below his apartment. He encounters more brutally murdered victims and suffers a beating himself on the way to exposing a ruthless killer.
Fusilli’s plot gets shaggy, but his noir prose is peerless, as is his darkly romantic portrait of the Big Apple.