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Innocent Monster: a book

A thriller by Reed Farrel Coleman

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Interesting Mystery But Hard to Get Into If You Did Not Read the Prior Books

  • Jul 9, 2012
I ordered this book from Amazon Vine not realizing it is a series of books with Investigator Moe Prager. Had I known I would have started with one of the earlier books. Though Moe seems to be an interesting character there is a lot in the book that is difficult to appreciate without reading the first books.

Sashi Blumstone is a child prodigy that disappeared. Sashi's mother (Cindy) happens to be the best friend of Moe's daughter (Sara) so he is asked to investigate her disappearence after the police have found nothing in 3 weeks.

Moe had given up his investigative business but decides to take this one pro bono. Sashi had first become famous at the age a four for one of her paintings and her fame continued until her disappearence. As Moe investigates he is drawn into a world of sleazy art dealers and collecters, many whom both hated Sashi and still coveted her paintings.

Moe comes across a security guard (Jimmy Palumbo), an ex-football player and decides to hire him to be his muscle to maybe "shake" some information out of some of his suspects. One of the "shaken" suspects gives them a whole bunch of names to check out. Not too long after the mystery appears solved but the "solution" leaves Moe cold, kind of like the mystery of how bees can fly. Moe never lets this go until he eventulally finds all his answers.

I really tried to like this book but there were too many references to the prior tales, especially with Moe's first two wives that it I wanted a lot more info to get insight into Moe. There were also several "uncomfortable" moments in the book especially involving Cindy and the ending of the book left me shaking my head. Therefore, I couldn't give this book more than 3 stars.

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July 13, 2012
Could be promising in spots!
About the reviewer

Ranked #9
I first got on this blog to discuss my first passion which is books. Since I have gotten on I find that books are only a piece of this blog and I can discuss just about anything that comes to mind. It … more
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Seven years have passed since the brutal murder that tore Moe Prager's family apart and it's been six years since Moe's brushed the dust off his PI license. But when his estranged daughter Sarah comes to him with a request he cannot refuse, Moe takes a deep breath and plunges back into the icy, opaque waters of secrets and lies. Sashi Bluntstone, an eleven-year-old art prodigy and daughter of Sarah's dearest childhood friend, has been abducted. Three weeks into the investigation, the cops have gotten nowhere and the parents have gotten desperate. Desperation, the door through which Moe Prager always enters, swings wide open. Just as in Sashi's paintings, there's much more to the case than one can see at a glance. With the help of an ex-football star, Moe stumbles aroupd the fringes of the New York art scene, trying to get a handle on where the art stops and the commerce begins. Much to Moe's surprise and disgust, he discovers that Sashi is, on the one hand, revered as a cash cow and, on the other, reviled as a fraud and a joke. Suspects abound beyond the usual predators and pedophiles, for it is those closest to Sashi in life who have the most to gain from her death. Cruel ironies lurk around every corner, beneath every painting, and behind every door. Almost nothing is what it seems. Beware the innocent monster, for it need not hide itself and it lives closely among us: sometimes as close as the mirror.
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