Blindman's Bluff (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series #18)

( 48 )

Overview

A 3 A.M. phone call summons LAPD homicide detective Peter Decker to the well-fortified Coyote Ranch compound of billionaire developer Guy Kaffey. A grisly scene awaits: Kaffey and his wife dead, gunned down along with four employees. A philanthropist known for extending second chances to delinquents—many of whom he had hired for his personal security—the wealthy businessman died badly in what had to be an inside job. Perhaps even deeper inside than anyone imagines.

At first the ...

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Blindman's Bluff (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series #18)

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Overview

A 3 A.M. phone call summons LAPD homicide detective Peter Decker to the well-fortified Coyote Ranch compound of billionaire developer Guy Kaffey. A grisly scene awaits: Kaffey and his wife dead, gunned down along with four employees. A philanthropist known for extending second chances to delinquents—many of whom he had hired for his personal security—the wealthy businessman died badly in what had to be an inside job. Perhaps even deeper inside than anyone imagines.

At first the darkness enveloping this horrific multiple murder cannot touch Decker's wife, Rina Lazarus, who's serving on a jury in an L.A. courthouse. But a chance meeting and a request for help from a court translator is leading Rina straight into the heart of her husband's investigation—and directly into the path of relentless, cold-blooded killers.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
In real life, homicide detectives take at least occasional vacations; in fiction, every sleuth's getaway is abruptly canceled by some scoundrel's impolite act of mayhem. In Blindman's Bluff, the 18th Decker/Lazarus mystery, Peter and Rina must rush back to L.A. to track down a killer who refuses to retire.
Publishers Weekly
When billionaire developer Guy Kaffey, his wife and assorted employees are brutally murdered, police lieutenant Pete Decker investigates the motives and alibis of the remaining Kaffeys, while Rina, out on jury duty, is largely absent from the main plot. It's a fortuitous development: Mitchell Greenberg offers a slight shift in pitch for Rina, but he shines when capturing the tough-but-reasonable Decker, the gruff-but-romantic detective Scott, and the many members of a Mexican family, whose accented English he performs with subtlety and finesse. A Morrow hardcover (Reviews, Jun. 15).
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
A cop's wife IDs a suspect. Nothing is routine for Rina Lazarus, not even a call to jury duty. Even though husband Peter Decker is with the LAPD, she's impaneled anyway. During a lunch break the court translator, who's blind, asks Rina to describe two men he's been eavesdropping on. The pair have just admitted knowing details about L.A.'s newest high-profile case, the slaying of real-estate developer Guy Kaffey, his wife, their private security guards and their maid. One Kaffey son was left for dead but survives, while the other, along with Guy's brother Mace, flies in from the East Coast, where they're overseeing a project that's hemorrhaging money. Clues lead Peter to the notorious Bodega 12th Street gang and the body of yet another security guard. Meanwhile, Rina leafs through books of mug shots, the translator makes a pest of himself at the station house and Kaffey family embezzlements come to light. There will be further attempts on the remaining Kaffeys-and on Peter, Rina and the translator-before the City of Angels settles down once more. Kellerman (The Garden of Eden, 2006, etc.), who seems as fond of plot coincidences as she is of Judaica, has settled into a comfortable storytelling groove that's likely to please her legion of fans without winning her many new ones.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062088215
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 11/27/2012
  • Series: Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series , #18
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 512
  • Sales rank: 249,932
  • Product dimensions: 4.30 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Faye  Kellerman

Faye Kellerman lives with her husband, New York Times bestselling author Jonathan Kellerman, in Los Angeles, California, and Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Biography

It's tempting to compare Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus to Dashiell Hammett's classic crime-solving couple, Nick and Nora Charles. But Faye Kellerman's duo, who debuted in 1983, bear more resemblance to her own husband-wife dynamic with fellow bestselling thriller author Jonathan Kellerman. Decker is an L.A. cop; wife Rina is an Orthodox Jewish mom who gets very involved in her husband's work. The series comes with a love story built in, since in the first title, Ritual Bath, Lazarus is a witness meeting Detective Decker for the first time. Over the next dozen-odd novels, the two fall in love, get married, have children and solve crimes along the way.

Kellerman, who was inspired by her husband to begin writing, is also the author of Moon Music, a contemporary thriller set in Las Vegas, and The Quality of Mercy, a historical novel of Elizabethan England. Fans needn't worry, however, that Kellerman is going to abandon the pair she is best known for. "I never tire of them," Kellerman says in an interview on her publisher's web site of Decker and Lazarus. "I like them very much, but to keep them fresh is the main reason why I have two 'outside-the-series' or 'stand alone' books. Once in a while you have to sit back and gain some perspective on these people that you are writing about year after year."

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    1. Hometown:
      Beverly Hills, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      July 31, 1952
    2. Place of Birth:
      St. Louis, Missouri
    1. Education:
      B.A. in Mathematics, 1974; D.D.A., 1978

Read an Excerpt

Blindman's Bluff
A Decker and Lazarus Novel

Chapter One

Ah, fantasy: the stuff of life.

As he dressed for work, he looked in the mirror. Staring back at him was a handsome man around six feet four . . .

No. That was way too tall.

Staring back at him was a six-foot-one, devilishly handsome angular man with a surfer mop of sun-kissed hair and preternatural blue eyes, so intense that whenever any woman looked at him, she had to avert her eyes in embarrassment.

Well, the eyes part was probably true.

How about this?

In the mirror, staring back at him was an angular face topped by a nest of curly, dark hair and a shy smile that made women swoon-so boyish and charming, yet masculine at the same time.

He felt his lips turn into a smile, and he raked fingers through his own curly locks, which were on the thin side-not thinning, but not a lot of weight to the fibers. Pulling up on the knot of his tie, he eased it into the folds of his collar and felt the fabric: deluxe, heavy silk handpainted with an array of colors that would go with almost anything randomly chosen from his closet. As he tucked his shirttail into his pants, his hands ran over the rises and falls of a six-pack courtesy of crunches and weight lifting and a very strict eating regimen. Like most bodybuilders, his muscles craved protein, which was fine as long as he trimmed the fat. That was why whenever he looked in the mirror, he liked what he saw.

More like what he imagined he saw.

Decker was genuinely perplexed. "I don't understand how you got past the voir dire." "Maybe the judge believed me when I said Icould be objective," Rina answered. Adding artificial sweetener to his coffee, Decker grunted. He had always taken his java straight up, but of late he had developed a sweet tooth, especially after a meat meal. Not that dinner was all that heavy-skirt steaks and salad. He liked simple cooking whenever it was just the two of them. "Even if the judge shamed you into serving, the public defender should have booted your attractive derriere off the panel."

"Maybe the P.D. believed that I could be objective."

"For the last eighteen years, you've heard me piss and moan about the sorry state of the justice system. How could you possibly be objective?"

Rina smiled behind her coffee cup. "You're assuming I believe everything you tell me."

"Thank you very much."

"Being a detective lieutenant's wife has not leeched all rationality from my brain. I can think for myself and be just as rational as the next person."

"It sounds to me like you want to serve." Decker took a sip of his coffee-strong and sweet. "More power to you, darlin'. That's what our jury system needs, smart people doing their civic duties." He gave her a sly smile. "Or it could be that Mr. P.D. enjoys looking at you."

"It's a she and maybe she does."

Decker laughed. Anyone would enjoy staring at Rina. Over the past years, her face had grown a few laugh lines, but she still cut a regal pose: an alabaster complexion tinged with pink at the cheekbones, silken black hair, and cornflower-colored eyes.

"It wasn't that I didn't want to get out of it," Rina explained. "It's just that past a certain point, if you want to be excused, you have to start lying. Saying things like 'no, I can't ever be objective,' and that makes you sound like a doofus."

"What's the case?"

"You know I can't talk about it."

"Ah, c'mon!" Decker bit into a sugar cookie, home baked courtesy of his sixteen-year-old daughter. Crumbs nested in his mustache. "Who am I going to tell?" "An entire squad room perhaps?" Rina replied. "Do you have any court appearances in L.A. coming up?"

"Not that I know of. Why?"

"I thought maybe we could meet for lunch."

"Yeah, let's get crazy and spend those fifteen dollars a day the courts give you."

"Plus gas, but only one way. Indeed, serving on a jury is not the pathway to riches. Even selling blood pays more. But I am doing my public duty and as one employed to protect and serve, you should be grateful."

Decker kissed her forehead. "I'm very proud of you. You're doing the right thing. And I won't ask you about the case anymore. Just please tell me it isn't a murder case."

"I can't tell you yes or no, but because you have seen the worst of humanity and have a very active imagination, I will tell you not to worry."

"Thank you." Decker checked his watch. It was past nine in the evening. "Didn't Hannah say she'd be back home by now?"

"She did, but you know your daughter. Time is a fluid concept with her. Want me to call her?"

"Will she answer her cell?"

"Probably not, especially if she's driving . . . Wait. That's her pulling up."

A moment later, their daughter came barreling through the front door, lugging a two-ton knapsack on her back and carrying two paper bags filled with groceries. Decker relieved her of the backpack, and Rina took the food.

"What's all this for?" Rina asked.

"I'm having a few girlfriends over for Shabbos. Other than what I bake, we don't have anything good in the house anymore. Do you want me to put the groceries away?"

"I'll do it," Rina said. "Say hello to your father. He's been worried about you."

Hannah checked her watch. "It's ten after nine."

"I know I'm overprotective, I don't care. I'll never change. And we don't have junk in the house, because if it's there, I eat it."

"I know, Abba. And being as you pay all the bills, I respect your wishes. But I'm only sixteen and this is probably one of the few times in my life that I'll be able to eat junk without gaining massive amounts of weight. I look at you and I look at Cindy and I know I'm not always going to be this thin."

"What's wrong with Cindy? She's perfectly normal."

"She's a big girl like I am, and she watches her weight like a hawk. I'm not at that point yet, but it's only a matter of time before my metabolism catches up with me."

Decker patted his belly. "Well, what's wrong with me?"

"Nothing's wrong with you, Abba. You look great for . . ." Hannah stopped herself. For your age were the unspoken words. She kissed his cheek. "I hope my husband will be as handsome as you."

Decker smiled despite himself. "Thank you, but I'm sure your husband will be much handsomer."

"That would be impossible. No one is as handsome as you are and with the exception of pro athletes, hardly anyone is as tall as you. It gets a tall girl down sometimes. We either have to wear flats or tower over most of the class."

"You're not that tall."

"That's only because to you everyone is short. I'm already taller than Cindy and she's five nine."

"If you're taller, it's not by much. And there are many boys over five nine."

"Not Jewish boys."

"I'm a Jewish boy."

Blindman's Bluff
A Decker and Lazarus Novel
. Copyright (c) by Faye Kellerman . Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 48 )
Rating Distribution

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(14)

4 Star

(13)

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(8)

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(7)

1 Star

(6)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 48 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 12, 2009

    Poorly Written

    Unfortunately, this is poorly written. Too wordy. In addition, although I'm only 1/3 through, there are already several factual errors.

    First, a major character is described as a "translator." However, this character is actually an interpreter. A translator is the person who uses the written word to translate documents/letters. An interpreter uses the oral word to interpret the spoken language. In Kellerman's book, the character is a court interpreter who is consistently referred to as a translator. Very annoying if you know the difference.

    The second vexing error is that the murder victim, a billionaire commercial developer, is described as owning a private company. Kellerman describes a fight between the victim and his brother as "lowering the stock prices." However, a private company is private; there are no stock prices. Only a public company is listed in the stock exchange.

    Third error, so far, is that she refers to flora as fauna. Flora are plants; fauna are animals. She mixes them up.

    She needs a better editor. This type of mistake is unnecessary and distracting. I'll likely finish the book cause I paid for the darn thing, but I don't recommend buying it.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Disappointing

    I'm afraid the Decker-Lazarus series has run out of steam. The earlier books in this series provided many interesting details regarding Peter & Rina's Orthodox Jewish religious beliefs and practices---I have lived my entire life in the Midwest & know almost no one who is Jewish, so I found this quite fascinating. However, this book makes almost no mention of their religion or home life, & the remaining story was a rather run-of-the-mill police procedural. (Also, the wrong form of the word "breach" was used repeatedly when discussing a "breech (sic) of security." Surely an editor should have caught this!)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 24, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    just ok nothing special

    Nice mystery lots of good characters BUT it drones on & on. I have to wonder why todays mystery writers feel that they have to give us more than we need & in this case 380 plus pages. This is a good story but if 100 pages were cut out it would of been a better book. Sometimes less is more or better put get to the point...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 16, 2009

    Another Peter Decker book by Faye Kellerman

    Having read all the Peter Decker books, and I think, all of Faye Kellerman's, I was looking forward to reading her latest.
    I thought it was an easy read, and as always, I enjoyed my time reading. This book however lacked some of the earlier Peter Decker qualities. Faye seemed to "write down" in this novel, and for me wasn't as griping or entertaining.
    I also thought I caught a mistake as she says something like police work was what Peter wanted to do after college, but he was a laywer working with his old father-in-law.
    I have given and recommended "The ritual bath" to many friends. It really combined the police intrigue with the Jewish community. Blindman was too Jewish specific (as in apealing only to religious Jews), and I felt wasn't one of her best.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 25, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    What An Annoying Book

    This novel starts right out with multiple murders at a mega-mansion. We need to learn the names of the deceased, the staff, the eight detectives on the case, then the staff at the deceased's big company, along with wives and various bit-players, including a blind translator who can intuit just about anything a person might be hiding. We sit in on a detailed meeting of the detectives, with assignments going out, cops saying they can't do this or that, schedules need to be altered. And this is a crime thriller? A suspense novel?
    We get detoured to a criminal case that the detective's wife is sitting on-as if that would really happen. The author refers to a witness as a plaintiff, apparently unaware that the plaintiff in a California criminal case is the people of the state of California.
    The detectives get the call on the murder at 3 am. They go to the mansion, with travel time, perhaps arriving at 4. There are no press present. Yet the story is the headlines on that morning's LA Times. Miraculous, huh?
    It goes on like that until the weary reader just throws up his (my) hands and wonders why I might care about all of this. The author hasn't given me any reason to care about any of it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2013

    Do not waste your time!

    I have been enjoying Kellerman books, but this book was no good. Because the beginning set the stage as a story with potential, I kept reading til the last 100 pages. Then, I thought, why have I spent time with this junk! The book was too wordy, it was drawn out, and the story got stupid. I felt the writer worked off an outline and it made her lack creativity and lose track of the total package. Also, there were way too many descriptions and details given about clothing, and while all the information about the Jewish faith was very interesting, I have no idea why it was in the book. I will try another Kellerman novel, but if it gets bad, I will quit reading more quickly.

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  • Posted November 12, 2009

    A Fun Read

    This Who-Done-It is a good yarn that was especially suspenseful because of the quick affection you develop for the clearly drawn characters which are realistically admirable. The unique twist in this novel (referenced in the title) definitely took the thrills up several notches.

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  • Posted November 12, 2009

    was terrific, highly recommended!!!!

    Wonderful and insightive. Could not put down.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Kellerman Does It Again!

    Faye Kellerman's crime fighting duo, Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus, never disappoint fans. This time Kellerman outdid herself in Blindman's Bluff. This story will keep readers on the edge of their seats trying to figure out the who done it. Kellerman holds the secret right to the end, keeping her readers guessing along the way.

    Kellerman always paints a vivid description of the California landscape, that lets her reader feel as if they were there. She did not disappoint in this work. The only disappointment this book held was when the people attending services at Pete and Rina's Orthodox synagogue were described as parishioners. I was stunned by the error, as Kellerman takes such pains to describe the Jewish aspect of her story so correctly.
    Nevertheless this is a great read which will satisfy Pete and Rina fans.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2009

    Faye has done it again! She takes you into the lives of her characters and once again Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus are in the middle of a developing story.

    I enjoy all of Faye Kellerman's books and this one was no different. She kept you guessing throughout the book as to who was the primary villian. As usual several stories woven into one.

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  • Posted September 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Faye Kellerman does it again!

    I can always count on a good story from this author - her plots are well crafted and can hold the reader's interest from beginning to end. I love the Pete Decker/Rina Lazarus characters and the others they interact with. I eagerly await Faye Kellerman's next offering.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted February 6, 2011

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    Posted September 15, 2009

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    Posted December 8, 2009

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    Posted September 20, 2009

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    Posted January 19, 2011

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    Posted January 12, 2010

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    Posted January 14, 2010

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    Posted June 15, 2012

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    Posted December 26, 2009

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