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Another fish in the sea.   —   Books

I have a new love in my life. He's funny and smart and clever and full of surprises. His name is Dennis Lehane. I spotted his novel 'Prayers for Rain' on the small bookcase in the hallway of our office on my way back from the bathroom. We keep a small library in that bookcase, everyone contributing books now and then, but nothing new had been added in a few months so when I saw Prayers for Rain sitting there, it's spine cracked from too many reads, its cover worn, I was intrigued. I picked it up and read the synopsis on the back. It sounded interesting, like a good detective novel that I'd probably enjoy, but I've got a shelf full of books at home that I'm trying to read before winter and I certainly didn't need another book to add to a stack that only seems to grow rather than shrink. Still, I opened the book to the first chapter and started to read the first paragraph, giving it a quick test.

"The first time I met Karen Nichols, she struck me as the kind of woman who ironed her socks."

I laughed out loud and decided I didn't need to read any further. I took the book back to my desk and thought it'd be a fun summer read. I love a great detective novel, the only ones I read though are by David Lindsey, he's good enough that he fulfills my detective novel needs and so I stay faithful. Until now.

What I didn't know at the time is that Dennis Lehane is the author of the book Mystic River, which of course was turned into a movie in which Sean Penn won is first Oscar award for his roll as Jimmy. I saw the movie last winter and loved it.

Prayers for Rain is keeping me up past my bedtime. It's going to be difficult after I finish the book this evening, to restrain myself from buying another Lehane novel, as I mentioned before about the shelf of books I have waiting for me in my apartment.

So, if anyone likes a good detective novel with smart dialogue that leads to a good laugh once and a while, and a plot with so many turns you get dizzy, then I really recommend Dennis Lehane. I will certainly be reading more of his work, and my shelf at home will probably grow larger, rather than smaller before the week is out.

Posted 5.25.2004

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