cover image WHAT YOU WISH FOR


David Cray, . . Carroll & Graf, $24 (304pp) ISBN 978-0-7867-1085-0

In this well-oiled crime novel, tough, smart, beautiful New York detective Julia Brennan investigates the murder of Adeline Rose, a wealthy Upper East Side widow with a shady past, while ex-cop boyfriend Peter Foley goes undercover to rescue his 11-year-old daughter from the child pornographers who kidnapped her five years earlier. Uptown, Julia, now a captain in the district attorney's Sex Crimes Unit, quickly identifies three prime suspects for Rose's homicide: her slick lawyer, junkie stepdaughter and menacing stepson. All three hated the woman and all three lied to the police. Julia evades easy answers, uncovering the murderous plot with the same savvy she applies to interoffice politics. Downtown, Peter has no easy answers, no press conferences and no office. With only an amateur videotape to suggest his daughter is still alive, he is ready to do anything to get her back. As the bruised bodies of pornographers and thugs pile up along Peter's path, Julia is warned he may not be the ideal match for an ambitious woman like her. Cray (Little Girl Blue, etc.) uses time-tested formulas, filling his uptown mystery with clever dialogue and his downtown crime caper with action. He delivers ample amounts of sex and violence, followed by redemptive portions of morality and family feeling. Cray knows readers turn to crime fiction to satisfy a need for poetic justice—clean endings, puzzles with all the pieces in place—and he doesn't disappoint. The villains suffer the nasty fates they deserve; the heroes triumph, ready for the sequel. (Dec.)