cover image The Theory of Death

The Theory of Death

Faye Kellerman. Morrow, $26.99 (384p) ISBN 978-0-06-227021-4

Set in Greenbury, N.Y., bestseller Kellerman’s plodding 23rd mystery featuring Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus (after 2014’s Murder 101) opens with the discovery in a forest of the corpse of college student Eli Wolf, who apparently shot himself. Decker, who now works for the Greenbury PD after recently retiring from the LAPD, investigates. Meanwhile, Tyler McAdams, who left Greenbury PD for Harvard Law School, returns home to study for his exams. Tyler tags along as Decker tries to determine why Eli, who comes from Mennonite stock and was a gifted mathematician, would have committed suicide. When one of Eli’s classmates turns out to be a woman who has had a crush on Tyler for years, she can’t be ruled out as a suspect in what develops into a murder case. Series fans will be pleased to see that the relationship between Decker and Lazarus, neither of whom has any flaws, remains as affectionate as ever. New readers should be prepared for plenty of schmaltz. (Oct.)