Stone Kiss) will please her fans, but is unlikely to make new converts. When C"/>
 

STREET DREAMS: A Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Novel

Faye Kellerman, Author
Faye Kellerman, Author . Warner $25.95 (420p) ISBN 978-0-446-53131-3
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 978-0-7595-4777-3
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Bestseller Kellerman's latest Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus novel (after 2002's Stone Kiss) will please her fans, but is unlikely to make new converts. When Cindy Decker, Peter's LAPD officer daughter (who had a big role in 2000's Stalker), finds an abandoned baby in a dumpster, she sets out to track down the developmentally disabled mother, suspecting that the child may have been the product of a rape. Her fellow officers discourage her efforts, while an attempt on her life sparks conflict with an alarmed Peter. Romance occupies Cindy, an observant Jew, as much as her professional career. Conveniently, the sexy and caring black pediatric nurse who cares for the baby turns out to be an observant Ethiopian Jew who is instantly smitten with her. Other coincidences abound, including Cindy's witnessing of a fatal hit-and-run that may be connected with the sexual assault she alone believes occurred. A minor subplot concerning the murder of stepmother Rina's grandmother in 1920s Munich simply peters out. Details of Jewish religious observance amount to superficial trappings. Cindy mentions dealing with an earlier trauma through therapy, but the author never lets the reader in on any of her sessions. The solution to the crime comes almost as an afterthought in this overlong book. Others, and Kellerman herself, have done a better job of melding a mystery plot with the challenges of maintaining Jewish identity in the modern world. 3-city author tour. (Aug. 1)

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