Monday, March 04, 2013

The Good Cop by Brad Parks

It's hard to resist Carter Ross' wit and black humor. Ross is the investigative reporter for the Newark Eagle-Examiner in Brad Parks' mysteries. He won't stop when he finds a story. He's totally confused about his feelings for his boss Tina, the assistant managing editor. And, he finds the most unusual sources. Now, in The Good Cop, he's digging for a story that nobody wants him to tell.

Ross is still in bed when he gets the call that a Newark police detective is dead. He's the first reporter at Detective Sergeant Darius Kipps' home, and Kipps' widow, Mimi, fills him in on all the background for a hero's story; decorated cop, son of a decorated cop; new father who doted on his daughter, and now has the son he wanted. So, when Tina tells Carter it's no story because it was a suicide, he can't believe it. And, the widow also refuses to believe her husband killed himself. And, when Carter finds something fishy, he sets out to find the truth. But, he stirs up trouble, and soon finds himself as bait.

The Good Cop isn't the best book in this series. It's a little slow, lacking some of the intensity of previous books, and some of the humor. But, Parks' subject is dark, the death of a cop, and the story of guns in New Jersey. The introductory pieces with the history of guns up and down I-95 are fascinating.

Despite the slower pace, it's always a pleasure to meet up with Carter Ross. He manages to involve every newspaper intern in his crazy schemes. Even at thirty-two, he sometimes ends up in ridiculous situations in his personal life. And, as I said, he has the most interesting sources. Wait until you meet Uncle Bernie! This time, the plot wasn't quite up to par. But, it's always worth reading Parks' books for his astute look at criminal and political issues, and his marvelous portrayal of characters.

Brad Parks' website is

The Good Cop by Brad Parks. Minotaur Books. 2013. ISBN 9781250005256 (hardcover), 352p.

FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.


Karen B said...

Nice interview of Brad if you haven't seen it yet:

Lesa said...

Thanks for passing it on, Karen. I'll have to check it out.

Karen C said...

I appreciate the review, Lesa.

Lesa said...

Thanks, Karen.