The Way We Die Now

Charles Ray Willeford, Author Random House (NY) $15.95 (245p) ISBN 978-0-394-56525-5
Detective Hoke Mosely, the protagonist of Willeford's Miami Blues and other novels, returns in this latest mystery set in Miami and nearby Collier County. Hoke is a busy man: his teenage daughters and live-in ex-partner keep his head turning at home; his work on the cold-case file has at last yielded a clue in a physician's murder; and two men from the Caribbean isles have turned up dead in an apartment sprayed by an exterminator. Further, a killer Hoke nabbed 10 years earlier, unexpectedly paroled, has chosen to lease a home facing Hoke's own. That's not all. In the Everglades, Haitian migrant workers are missing and a particularly vicious redneck farmer is suspected of killing them. So Hoke is summoned for special assignment, and then police work really gets interesting. If ever there was a mystery writer who dismissed Alfred Hitchcock's disdain for the ""plausibles,'' it is Willefordhe is meticulous about the details of Hoke's police and personal life. As if to balance his low-key approach and the amassing of mundane minutiae, Willeford draws a shockingly violent, ugly scene in which the redneck's hired man beats Hoke and attempts to rape him. And simmering beneath the surface is Hoke's nearly sociopathological obsession with the racial tensions between the ethnic groups who uneasily co-exist in southern Florida. As usual with Willeford's crime novels, this is an absorbing, often amusing and disturbing read. (April)
Reviewed on: 03/01/1988
Release date: 03/01/1988
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-440-21885-2
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-345-35332-0
Hardcover - 978-0-517-05228-0
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-14-197348-7
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