Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dear Great Book Guru, My book/film group is looking for something exciting and topical to read for May. Hint: we just watched the HBO series THE WIRE and everyone loved it.   Any recommendations?  Lover of Books and TV

Dear Lover of Books and TV, I recently finished a novel Daniel DiPietro recommended to me a few months ago. My book group really enjoyed it and I bet your friends will too: THE WHITES by Richard Price (writing as Harry Brandt).  Price has written many police/crime novels, but THE WHITES is something more… a morality play based on the human need for retribution.     Five young New York City police officers working together in the late 1990s became known as the Wild Geese, largely because of their strong sense of camaraderie and frequent use of unconventional tactics.  Billy Graves, the protagonist and  the only one of the Wild Geese still on the police force, heads the Night Watch  (10pm-6am), a brutal shift that wreaks havoc on body and spirit.   The others-  a funeral director, a real estate mogul, an apartment building super, and  a campus security chief- are long retired.  But the Wild Geese all have their “whites”, a case that continues to haunts them- the one in which someone  literally got away with murder. It is Ahab’s Moby Dick- the Great White Whale that must be hunted forever.    Price shows in great detail how each of these modern Ahabs’ lives has been formed and malformed by the pursuit.   Compromises are made, lines are crossed and we watch with horrified fascination as their stories unfold.  Highly recommended!

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