The Man Who Knew Brecht

John C. Boland. Perfect Crime (www.perfectcrimebooks.com), $15.95 trade paper (200p) ISBN 978-1-935797-32-6
The Lake Rehoboth Community in Connecticut—originally a Jewish summer camp now home to a mix of old-line Commies, red-diaper babies, and more recent Russian émigrés—serves as the backdrop for this engaging if slow-to-unfold mystery from Boland (Hominid). When the chairman of the community board, free-thinking former New York City shop teacher Ike Shapira, receives a fatal blow to the neck, the residents of Lake Rehoboth put on their sleuthing caps, notably board member Tamar Gillespie but also obstreperous Orthodox Jew Harry Abramovitz and retired NYU philosophy professor Cubby Stone, producer of a redoubtable anti-Soviet play, which Fedya Kargman, an elderly Russian émigré, ambiguously compares to Brecht’s The Measures Taken. Since the reader is privy to who killed Shapira, the central puzzle revolves around the identity of an individual cut out of a 50-year-old photograph stolen by the murderer. Those who relish the intellectual political debates of an earlier era will be most rewarded. Agent: Jill Marsal, Marsal Lyon. (May)
Reviewed on: 02/27/2012
Release date: 05/01/2012
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