The Fathers' Clubby Jon Katz
As The Fathers' Club opens, Kit Deleeuw is feeling particularly embattled in/i>
For men in the 90s, the world is full of pressure, difficult choices, and the struggle to build and maintain friendships. For the men in Jon Katz's fourth Suburban Detective mystery, it is also a world fraught with betrayal, greed, and massive fraudnot to mention murder.
As The Fathers' Club opens, Kit Deleeuw is feeling particularly embattled in his dual roles as detective and family man: His son is in trouble at school, his wife is away much of the time, and he is feeling out of place in the affluent suburb of Rochambeau. Having seen too much of the dark side of suburban life, he worries about becoming one of those men with too many acquaintances and too few friends. Into the midst of this slough of despond walks Linda Lewis, who wants Kit to investigate her ex-husband Dale. Normally a dutiful father, Dale has fallen behind in his child support payments, and hasn't called, visited the kids, or responded to Linda's calls in long enough to have her worried. When the deadbeat Dad turns up dead in his office, Kit decides to infiltrate the men's group Dale belonged to, hoping to find some clue. Dismissive of such groups as gatherings of narcissistic drumbeaters, he is surprised to find the men not only warm and welcoming, but full of good advice.
In the end, Kit finds himself not only involved with Russian mobsters, federal investigators, and the victim's infidelity, but also a lot wiser about the need men have to talk to one another, about his relationship with his son, and about his place in the child-crazed town of Rochambeau.
As casually plotted as the Suburban Detective's first three adventures, but without the edge that made their exotic New Jersey fauna so compelling. This time, Kit's homiletics come across as just plain gassy.
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