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Milk and Honey (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series #3)

Milk and Honey (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series #3)

4.0 118
by Faye Kellerman

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In the silent pre-dawn city hours -- alone with his thoughts about Rina Lazarus, the woman he loves, three thousand miles away in New York -- LAPD detective Peter Decker finds a small child, abandoned and covered in blood that is not hers. It is a sobering discovery, and a perplexing one, for nobody in the development where she was found steps forward to claim the


In the silent pre-dawn city hours -- alone with his thoughts about Rina Lazarus, the woman he loves, three thousand miles away in New York -- LAPD detective Peter Decker finds a small child, abandoned and covered in blood that is not hers. It is a sobering discovery, and a perplexing one, for nobody in the development where she was found steps forward to claim the little girl. Obsessed more deeply by this case than he imagined possible, Decker is determined to follow the scant clues to an answer. But his trail is leading him to a killing ground where four bodies lie still and lifeless. And by the time Rina returns, Peter Decker is already held fast in a sticky mass of hatred, passion, and murder -- in a world where intense sweetness is accompanied by a deadly sting.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
On a summer night in a housing development near Los Angeles, police sergeant Peter Decker finds a winsome two-year-old girl playing on a swing set--and wearing blood-soaked pajamas. Unclaimed, ``Sally'' is placed in a foster home while Decker and partner Marge Dunn try to learn her identity. Bee stings on her arms lead them days later to the scene of a bloody multiple murder at a honey farm. While piecing together a bizarre puzzle of betrayal and revenge which includes adultery, infertility and land development plans, Peter is also investigating rape and assault charges brought against an old army buddy from Vietnam. The pressures of the murder case and doubts about his friend's innocence compound Peter's anxiety as he waits for young Orthodox Jewish widow Rina Lazarus to decide if she will marry him--an older man who's only recently embraced his Jewish heritage. Kellerman weaves these threads into a believable, intricate mystery in which series hero Decker is revealed as even more complex, interesting and sympathetic than in earlier appearances ( Sacred and Profane ). Mystery Guild selection; Literary Guild alternate; author tour. (Apr.)

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HarperCollins Publishers
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Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series , #3
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Milk and Honey

Chapter One

The flutter of movement was so slight that had Decker not been a pro, he would have missed it. He yanked the wheel to the left and braked. The brown unmarked screeched, bucked, then rebelliously reversed directions in the middle of the empty intersection. Decker began to cruise down the vacant street, hoping for a second look at what had attracted his attention.

The Plymouth's alignment was off again, this time pulling to the right. If he had a spare minute, he'd check it out himself, haul her onto the lifts and probe her belly. The department mechanics were a joke. Overworked and underpaid, they'd fix one problem, cause another. The guys in the division were always laying odds on what would bust first when the vehicles were returned from service-six-to-one on a leaky radiator, four-to-one on a choked carburetor, three-to-one on the broken air-conditioning system, the odds improving to two-to-one if it was summertime.

Decker ran his fingers through thick ginger hair. The neighborhood was dead. Whatever he'd seen had probably been nothing significant. At one in the morning, the eyes played tricks. In the dark, parked cars looked like giant tortoises, spindly tree boughs became hanging skeletons. Even a well-populated housing development like this one seemed like a ghost town. Rows of tan-colored stucco homes had gelled into a lump of oatmeal, illuminated by moonbeams and blue-white spotlights from corner street lamps.

He slowed the Plymouth to a crawl and threw the headlights on high beam. Perhaps he'd seen nothing more than a cat, the light a reflection in the feline's eyes. But the radiancy had been lessconcentrated and more random, a ripple of flashes like silver fingernails running up a piano keyboard. Yet as he peered out the window, he saw nothing unusual.

The planned community was spanking new, the streets still smelling of recent blacktop, the curbside trees nothing more than saplings. It had been one of those compromises between the conservationists and the developers, the construction agreed upon by both parties while satisfying neither. The two groups had been at each other's throats since the Northeast Valley had been gerrymandered. This project had been hastily erected to smooth ruffled feathers, but the war between the factions was far from over. Too much open land left to fight over.

Decker cranked open the window and repositioned his backside in the seat, trying to stretch. Someday the city would order an unmarked able to accommodate a person of his size, but for now it was knees-to-the-wheel time. The night was mild, the fog had yet to settle in. Visibility was still good.

What the hell had he seen?

If he had to work tomorrow, he would have quit and headed home. But nothing awaited him on his day off except a lunch date with a ghost. His stomach churned at the thought, and he tried to forget about it -- him. Better to deal with the past in the light of day.

One more time around the block for good measure. If nothing popped up, he'd go home.

He was a tenacious son of a bitch, part of what made him a good cop. Anyway, he wasn't tired. He'd taken a catnap earlier in the evening, right before his weekly Bible session with Rabbi Schulman. The old man was in his seventies, yet had more energy than men half his age. The two of them had learned together for three hours straight. At midnight, when the rabbi still showed no signs of tiring, Decker announced he couldn't take any more.

The old man had smiled and closed his volume of the Talmud. They were studying civil laws of lost and found. After the lesson, they talked a bit, smoked some cigarettes -- the first nicotine fix Decker'd had all day. Thirty minutes later, he departed with an armful of papers to study for next week.

But he was too hyped up to go home and sleep. His favorite method of coping with insomnia was to take long drives into the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains -- breathe in the beauty of unspoiled lands, knolls of wildflowers and scrub grass, gnarled oaks and honey-colored maples. The peace and solitude nestled him like a warm blanket, and within a short period of time he usually became relaxed enough to sleep. He'd been on his way home when he noticed the flash of light. Though he tried to convince himself it was nothing, something in his gut told him to keep going.

He circled the block, then reluctantly pulled over to the curb and killed the engine. He sat for a moment, smoothing his mustache, then slapped the steering wheel and opened the car door.

What the hell, the walk would do him good. Stretch out his legs. No one was awaiting his arrival at the ranch, anyway. The home fires had been put out a long time ago. Decker thought of his phone conversation with Rina earlier in the evening. She'd sounded really lonely, hinted about coming back to Los Angeles for a visit -- just her and not the boys. Man, had he sounded eager -- overeager. He'd been so damned excited, she'd probably seen his horns over the telephone wires. Decker wondered if he'd scared her off, and made a mental note to call her in the morning.

He hooked his hand-radio onto his belt, locked the car, and opened the trunk. The trunk light was busted, but he could see enough to rummage through the items -- first-aid kit, packet of surgical gloves, evidence bags, rope, blanket, fire extinguisher -- where had he put the flashlight? He picked up the blanket. Success! And miracle of miracles, the batteries still had juice in them ...

Milk and Honey. Copyright © by Faye Kellerman. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Meet the Author

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

Brief Biography

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

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Milk and Honey 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 114 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. It was the first Faye Kellerman novel I had read and I can't wait to read more! I literally could not put this book down!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just recently read the first Decker / Lazurus based novel, and feel that this one is even more interesting. There are a few levels to the story line and plot. I would recommend this one to anyone reading the series based on the detective Peter Decker and his fiancee Rina Lazurus. There are 10 in the series , or more , and I have read quite a few. This one is just about the best , so far.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the 3rd book that I have read and it is just as wonderful. Faye Kellerman is a talented writer. Her books have just the right amount of suspense, humor and romance. I highly recommend this!
LynnS More than 1 year ago
I am reading through the series from the beginning. I am highly enjoying not just each individual book but how the characters are growing with each new book. Cant't wait until I start the next in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An excellent book. I became a fan of Faye Kellerman after being a fan of her husbands. I wasn't sure if I would enjoy her writing as much as I enjoyed his. I needn't have worried her books are engaging,suspenseful they make you want to finish the book in one sitting and whenyou are done you can't wait for the next one. My daughter is trying her hand at writing. If she is half as good as mrs. Kellerman is then she will do good. You rock Faye Kellerman. Keep those books coming. I'm hooked.
YukonCorneliusRocks More than 1 year ago
Another great book. I thought I would get tired of the series, but book 3 is just as good as 1 and 2. I am ready to search for book 4. If you're looking for a little romance (not too mushsy or full of sex scenes) and suspense, read Faye Kellerman.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
veeeeeeery good read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although the blood and guts scenes are not for the light pf heart!
PattyZF More than 1 year ago
Liked this book enough to find out what else the author has written, and buy it too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Easy and fast reading.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm in love with the Decker and Rina Series. This book was so very fun to read. I truly loved it.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just started reading this series. I also read Janet Evanovich. This series is different, but the context of it is wonderful. Keeps my attention for long periods of time. I am enjoying this series immensely!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the book! T'was a nice, calm and fun read! Happened on the book by chance. Will seek out the author next time. Perfect calmer after an intense read.. Thank You!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What is the book about cause i read ur comments an they was good and JADE
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