January 6, 2012



The Cold Room by Robert Knightly as reviewed by Marilyn Meredith

This is the second book of Bob Knightly's I've read, the first being Bodies in Winter. What I liked best about both books is they are more authentic as a police procedural than many I've read. NYPD detective Harry Corbin is a different kind of cop. He's not a super hero nor is he loved by all of his fellow cops. In Bodies in Winter, Corbin exposes a twisted web of corruption among the police ranks and superiors which didn't endear him to anyone. When The Cold Room opens, Corbin is still being shunned by his co-workers and bosses. Even though he's a detective, he hasn't been allowed to work on any homicide cases for a year. When he stumbles upon a dumped and mutilated
female murder victim, he immediately decides to find out who she was and work on solving the case.
Following Corbin as he tries to learn the victim's identity with scant help from his superiors is like going on a ride-along. The big difference is as a reader, we're allowed into Corbin's mind not only as he pieces together the puzzle to find out who the murdered girl is, but who killed her.  Along the way, the reader is introduced to a neighborhood priest and a nun, both who play important parts in the investigation though not always in a cooperative manner. The interaction between Corbin and Father Stan is intriguing, both trying to outfox the other. Following Corbin through rich neighborhoods and poor, sitting with him during stake-outs, learning about the exploitation of female illegal immigrants, a horrendously screwed-up family, and how he pieces together what happened to the murder victim and
who did it, has the stamp of true police work. Following clues from one place to another, intensified action, a touch of romance, and a surprising ending, make The Cold Room a most satisfying read. Highly recommended to lovers of mystery and police procedurals.


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