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Ex-NYPD homicide cop Jackson "Jake" Steeg, who took a bullet in Family Matters(2006), can't get away from his Hell's Kitchen heritage in Berkowitz's violent and entertaining sequel. Jake's hateful ex-mother-in-law, Jeanmarie Doyle, wants him to help his ex, Ginny, and her new husband, Tony Ferris, who are getting death threats. A reluctant Jake can't avoid getting involved after Tony is brutally murdered. A recovering alcoholic with one good lung, Jake can still mix it up with the tough guys and is quick to do so. The busy plot finds him dealing with corrupt cops and politicians, skinheads, an Israeli gangster and other creeps. Deftly rendering such New York City neighborhoods as Alphabet City and Brighton Beach (Little Odessa), Berkowitz keeps the dialogue rough, the action fast and the characterization thin but sharp as Jake steers his way through the myriad traps thrown in his way. (Dec.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.