I confess that when I first stumbled upon an Alafair Burke novel, I took it as proof of the tenet anyone whose ever written a novel and attempted to get an agent, let alone get it published, quickly learns. You really need to know someone. Alas book publishing, like everything in our society other than the cyberworld, is ossified. Take Hollywood. How many are the children, nephews of famous faces? See, with the name Alafair, it was a fair bet she was related to one of my favorite all time authors, James Lee Burke. Eventually, I relented and picked up a copy of one of her novels. It was okay.
So you can imagine the pleasant surprise when, because of library budget cuts, I was reduced to picking up the second installment in the Ellie Hatcher series Angel's Tip- in large print, no less- and loved it. With the character of Ellie, Burke really hits her stride. Her sensitivity and feel for the night life in lower Manhattan and the nicely wrought plot make this one a joy to read on a Friday after work. As the blurb on the cover from Faye Kellerman describes it, "riveting." Enjoyed it.