A surfeit of good intentions sinks this latest offering from a brave, if occasionally rash crime novelist. Zubro's mysteries all feature gay characters, and he develops them boldly. In addition, he's bullish on fingering injustice (doubtless his earlier The Only Good Priest made him few friends among the Catholic clergy). Unfortunately, his laudable rhetoric and his intentions exact a heavy penalty on plot here. Paul Turner is a good gay Chicago cop with pals on the force, a loyal and abrasive partner and a hunk of a lover named Ben. Paul's also trying to raise his two boys (one has spina bifida) and find out why Gideon Giles, a college professor and city alderman, choked to death on a concoction of vegetables juiced in his very own juicer. Giles isn't, however, a very compelling victim. Gradually exposed as a chameleon who cynically associated himself with worthwhile causes, he was a wild card in the always volatile Chicago political scene, where he had mysteriously defeated a powerful city politician to become alderman. The author keeps telling us we should question this victory. We do. But we also rapidly lose interest. Zubro offers lots of nerve and political correctness, but little narrative tension. (July)
Reviewed on: 06/28/1993 Release date: 07/01/1993 Genre: Fiction
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