The Hard Way (Rachel Alexander and Dash Series #9)

The Hard Way (Rachel Alexander and Dash Series #9)

by Carol Lea Benjamin
4.3 6

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The Hard Way (Rachel Alexander and Dash Series #9) by Carol Lea Benjamin

A lifelong New Yorker, Private Investigator Rachel Alexander has lived through some rough times—from 9/11, to a difficult divorce, to cases that have taken her to the depths of the city's dark underbelly. But when wealthy business owner Eleanor Redstone approaches Rachel to ask if she can investigate her father's murder—a brutal slaying that occurred when he was pushed onto the subway tracks—Rachel takes the case, plunging herself into parts of the city only its poorest residents have ever known. Because to solve Gardner Redstone's murder, Rachel must disguise herself as a homeless woman and live on the streets, searching for the dispossessed man witnesses say made the fatal push. In one of the coldest winters New York City has seen in years, Rachel is helped by a homeless Iraq War veteran, a man whose sad circumstances leave Rachel pondering her own fortunate life.

From critically-acclaimed author Carol Lea Benjamin, a writer the Cleveland Plain-Dealer calls "first rate," this is another illuminating look into the heart of New York, a mystery with heartbreaking characters, and a story you'll never forget.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061983191
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 10/06/2009
Series: Rachel Alexander and Dash Series , #9
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 72,945
File size: 701 KB

About the Author

Carol Lea Benjamin is a noted author about, and trainer of, dogs. Her award-winning books on dog behavior and training include Mother Knows Best: The Natural Way to Train Your Dog, Second-Hand Dog, and Dog Training in Ten Minutes. A former detective, Benjamin blends her knowledge of dogs with her real-life experiences to create the Rachel Alexander mystery series. Recently honored by the International Association of Canine Professionals with election to their Hall of Fame, she lives in Greenwich Village with her husband and three dogs, Dexter, Flash, and Peep.

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Hard Way (Rachel Alexander and Dash Series #9) 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read the book, despite the plot spoilers. I recommend it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rachel Alexander and her dog, Dashiell are a team of private detectives. Yes, Dashiell is a very important part of Rachel¿s work. Most of us that have dogs realize how much a part of our lives they are and we treat them like the ¿kids¿ they are to us. When businessman Garner Redstone is pushed off the platform into the front of a subway train and is killed, Rachel receives a call from Redstone¿s daughter requesting that Rachel find out who did this terrible deed. It seems there were some homeless among those standing on the subway platform and could they have pushed Redstone? They were suspected and accused by many on the platform. While seeing a bad fire among a group of people, some of who are homeless people that had lived in the burning building, Rachel wonders who could have set such a fire and put so many people out of a living area. Seeing all the homeless, she decided the best way to obtain information on this murder was to go underground and become a homeless person herself. Using ¿Eunice¿ as her homeless name and ¿Lookout¿ for Dashiell, she started touring the homeless areas near where the fire occurred. She was accepted by a few but rejected by most. Eunice didn¿t have the look or moves of a homeless woman. She had to learn¿and fast! Some of the homeless took her under their wing and trusted her. Rachel was in and out of underground living while attempting to find the stories of those on the subway platform at the time of the push murder. With the wife¿s knowledge, she took an undercover job in the exclusive store owned by the deceased and his wife. This store catered to only the high-class sector selling exclusively designed jackets, coats, purses, and ultra specialty dog coats! Rachel researched the files of all ex and present day employees trying to find someone that had any reason to kill Garner Redstone. Her research led her to several employees and others that had any reason to kill Redstone. Rachel made several trips to interview most of the people that could be suspected killers, including some of the homeless People. Rachel had friends in the police department that got her information she was unable to find on her own. Dashiell was the talk and attention of all that met him, but he did not like some of them he met and made that known even though he wouldn¿t hurt them. The Hard Way is a very good suspenseful read and it has some humor to lighten things up along the way. Rachel learns how extremely hard the homeless have it in their day-to-day attempt to exist. She ends up helping some of them in different ways. It has many surprises along the way including the ending as it wraps up the murder. A good read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rachel Alexander has learned that the only way to go undercover is to go all the way inside out. Anything else can prove fatal when you do something out of character, and character is the keystone of this mystery. Eleanor Redstone can¿t sleep because the black, white, strong, short, tall homeless man who pushed her father onto the subway tracks in front of the express is still free. Rachel takes the case and goes undercover as one of the invisible homeless, but she knows there¿s something wrong with her cover. Even though she¿s spent long nights walking the part, people aren¿t talking to her. Luckily Eddie, an amnesiac, a young, homeless Iraq war veteran befriends her, giving her credibility as well as advice, and sends the suspect to her. Florida¿s first instinct after the incident was to grab the teen next to the victim and get him safely away from the edge, telling him to ¿¿be careful, son.¿ Dustin said he looked into the homeless man¿s eyes, and the eyes were kind. On the strength of her hunch, Rachel continues to investigate, going undercover at Eleanor¿s exclusive leather shop. By then, Eddie has gone missing, and although she searches, Rachel can¿t find him. She senses that Eddie¿s time on the streets is running out, and as she untangles the web of denial at GR, Eleanor's company, she finds grief and greed to be at the root of the murder. The murder solved, Rachel accepts that life is all too ephemeral, and she can¿t be afraid to take risks in exchange for connection and happiness. A thought provoking, well-plotted mystery with complex and realistic characters, The Hard Way is a gritty, satisfying read!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The daughter of Gardner Redstone hires Rachel Alexander to find the person who pushed her father into the path of an oncoming subway train. The police are stymied and the daughter wants answers. Of course there are a few witnesses and Rachel begins interviewing them all. Rachel must listen and study the varied stories told to her by a little boy, a ditsy lady, an ornery little store owner, and a grandmother. ............. Rachel does not seem to be doing any better than the police did, so she decides to go undercover as a homeless woman. Her disguise is not very good though, so she asks Eddie Perkins, a war veteran who is living on the New York streets, to help her. ................. **** Author Carol Lea Benjamin has another winner on her hands with this, the ninth novel in the Rachel Alexander mystery series. This book is aptly named too. I found myself more interested in the lives of the homeless and how they cope than anything else, especially during the winter. An extremely well written story that will open the eyes of many readers to the homeless situation, while challenging their intellect. ****
harstan More than 1 year ago
Successful Owner of GR Leather on Fourteenth Street in Manhattan, designer Gardner Redstone is in the subway when he falls onto the tracks just as a train arrived. Seven witnesses inform the police he was pushed. However, they do not agree on much more than that the culprit was a tall homeless male. The cops fail to find the killer who they assume is a maniac.---------------------- Gardner¿s daughter Eleanor hires dog trainer and private investigator Rachel Alexander to uncover the truth and identify her dad¿s killer. To do so Rachel goes undercover as Eunice a bag lady. However, at first she learns how to survive being homeless when a veteran mentors her. That does not help solve the case nor does interviewing the seven though their eyewitness accounts begin to unravel. At GR Leather she learns two employees recently died, which makes the sleuth and her canine partner Dashiell wonder if the killer¿s motive was not a loose maniacal frenzy, but a disguised cleverly handled homicide related to the upscale leather business.---------------------- The whodunit and why takes a back seat to the comparisons between the two Manhattans that of the wealthy vs. that of the street poor though a forced application of Thomas Carlisle¿s theory on the clothing of man takes somewhat away from the urinated formalwear compared with high quality leather. Rachel and Dashiell are at their very best when she meets the homeless Vet who though a bit off center teaches her the ropes of street survival. The murder mystery is fun to follow, but the interrogation of seven witnesses to the same event becomes a bit weary even if each sees things different. Still overall this is a fascinating tale as Rachel and the reader learns first hand what its like to walk in the ripped sneakers of a homeless person.------------------------ Harriet Klausner