Read Good Bait by John Harvey Online

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When a seventeen-year-old Moldovan boy is found dead on Hampstead Heath, the case falls to DCI Karen Shields and her overstretched Homicide & Serious Crime team. Karen knows she needs a result. What she doesn't know is that her new case is tied inextricably to a much larger web of gang warfare and organised crime which infiltrates almost every aspect of London society,When a seventeen-year-old Moldovan boy is found dead on Hampstead Heath, the case falls to DCI Karen Shields and her overstretched Homicide & Serious Crime team. Karen knows she needs a result. What she doesn't know is that her new case is tied inextricably to a much larger web of gang warfare and organised crime which infiltrates almost every aspect of London society, from the back streets and high rises of Tottenham to the multi-million pound hideaways of the new international entrepreneurs.Several hundred miles away in Cornwall, DI Trevor Cordon is stirred from his day-to-day duties by another tragic London fatality. Travelling to the capital, determined to establish the cause of death and trace the deceased's daughter - an old acquaintance from Penzance - Cordon becomes entangled in a lethally complex situation of his own. A situation much closer to Karen's case than either of them can imagine ...Brilliantly plotted and filled with rich, subtle characters, John Harvey's latest novel reveals him once again as a masterful writer with his finger firmly on the pulse of twenty-first century crime....

Title : Good Bait
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780434021628
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 346 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Good Bait Reviews

  • Trish
    2019-03-27 03:02

    I have a lot of time for John Harvey. I can’t figure out why he is not more widely read here in the U.S. He writes police procedurals, but with a deep intelligence and special flair. He does it all—the characterizations, the humanity, the procedure, the mystery--and then throws in a little music, a little talk about literature, food, wine…man, I just love this stuff. He is another of those authors whose books I save until I want a surefire weekend read-a-thon going on.Harvey is certainly the equal of Ian Rankin or Kate Atkinson, so if you like those popular authors, prepare for something special with Harvey. It looks like several of his books are being reissued this year or shortly thereafter. Definitely check him out if you haven’t already. He’s been writing a long time, and like Rankin and Atkinson, he just gets better as he goes along. Best of all, he provides us his influences at the end of this book, giving us some insight into his creative process. In fact, he praises Ladder of Angels by Brian Thompson as one of the finest crime novels in recent decades. I have never heard of this author, and I'm willing to bet many other people haven't either. I'm pleased to get a recommendation from a master.This stand-alone novel follows two separate investigations in different parts of England which end up circling the same house: the house of a drug and sex trafficker. We follow both threads which rarely overlap, one investigation led by a thirty-something black female homicide investigator based in London, and one led by an old copper close to retirement, shunted to a quiet out-of-the-way Cornwall precinct to finish off his duties. We like these folks. They don’t have their perceptions skewed, just sharpened, by their line of work.“Good Bait” is a jazz song, recorded many times by different artists. You might want to snag one (or several) of those recordings to prepare for settling down with this fine novel.

  • Tony
    2019-03-31 05:27

    GOOD BAIT. (2012). John Harvey. **. John Harvey has been around for a long time now, and has picked yp quite a few prestigious awards over the course of his career. He has written, by more cursory count, about thirty books, spanning the range of series detective to short story collection. My personal favorites used to be his novels featuring Charlie Resnick as his protagonist. This is not a Resnick, but a stand-alone police procedural that starts off fine, but soon becomes mired in a cast of thousands and dialogs so deep into British slang that the average American reader soon becomes lost in trying to maintain some grip on the story line. The basic premise is the intersection of two apparently different investigations, arising from two very different parts of England. The first occurs in the London area, where the body of a young man is discovered in a partially frozen over pond, stabbed to death. This investigation is soon headed up by Karen Shields, an officer from the Homicide and Serious Crime Command unit. The victim is soon discovered to be a native of Moldova who had entered England under the pretense of gaining an education. The second investigation starts off in the west of England – Cornwall – and is a relatively simple missing persons inquiry to begin with. Detective Inspector Trevor Cordon, through an earlier relationship with a local woman and her daughter, learns, first off, that the daughter has disappeared when her mother – already on the road to drunk and disorderly shows up at his station to report on her missing daughter Rose (later to be named Latitia) - challenges him to do something about finding her. A couple of weeks later, after having no success usuing the normal routes of investigation, he learns that the mother was killed after a fall (push/jump) under an on-coming commuter train. Now he is in London where the accident (?) occurred, and the two cases can come together. As usual in his books, Mr. Harvey lets us know that he is an avid jazz fan – and a very well informed one at that. References to the genre and its performers abound in the book. The title of the novel, even, is derived from a tune he hears played by Dizzy Gillespie and the All Stars, recorded earlier in New York City. Towards the latter half of the novel, I began to become really lost in trying to remember who was who, and found myself re-reading pages in an attempt to bring back a character to mind. This is likely a failing on my part, so I can’t rag the author. I can say that it takes a lot away from any enjoyment the book might have brought in its reading.

  • Bettie☯
    2019-03-25 23:24

    (view spoiler)[Bettie's Books(hide spoiler)]

  • Steve
    2019-04-18 01:04

    A dual story line that overlap in only a minor way. One involves a black DCI in London, Karen Shields. The other an older (five years till retirement) Detective Inspector, Trevor Cordon, in Cornwall. The story action surrounding Shields is more intense (murders, drug gangs, plus some worthwhile reflections on black communities in England), while the Cordon story line focuses more on a missing woman. I felt that Harvey gave us a lot more insight into the psyche and personality of Cordon than he did of Shields in this particular novel. As a result, his character was pretty interesting, hers was more bland, even inconsequential, especially given her role as a DCI. I have long been a big fan of John Harvey, including his series’ with Charlie Resnick, Frank Elder and the Helen Walker/Will Grayson books. This one was a different style. It involved two concurrent story lines, use of a lot of British slang, and was written almost with a scat kind of writing style. Although that does seem to match up nicely with the title of the book, Good Bait, which is a reference to the jazz classic. Overall, I enjoyed this story, especially the confluence of events in the Shields story and the character of Cordon.

  • David Jennings
    2019-04-19 00:15

    This fiction feels bang up to date, like reading the news, or how the news might read if more responsibly produced. Today's media focuses on triggering our startle reflex with scare stories of crime and immigration that skip the context and the causes. Good Bait paints on a broader canvas and tells the stories that other media don't reach. These stories are no less scary, but have considerably more substance. This was the first of four books I read on holiday this year, and after this other novels felt like second best. I believe John Harvey was a geography teacher back in the 1970s, and he has a great eye for showing how different parts of London mesh together, and how London connects to western extremities of the UK, coastal towns and its motorway-bordered heart. There's also a very contemporary social geography running through the book, as waves of immigration and grey/black market commerce from different generations diffuse together.(Note: I was given this book by the author after sharing a long train journey with him. I can't deny that this disposed me favourably towards the book, but I don't feel this has coloured my judgement too much.)

  • Dorian
    2019-04-10 00:01

    I like John Harvey a lot and regret he's had a checkered US publishing career.The new book feels like an experiment. Harvey admits as much in an afterword, in which he talks about wanting to do some of the things Peter Temple does in his work.Well, it's no Peter Temple. But what is?I salute Harvey for feeling his way into a slightly looser form. I like the sense of experimentation here; impressive for a writer who has been around a long time and could be said to know what he's doing. The book feels a bit messy, but in a good way. I appreciate, for example, that the two story lines only meet obliquely.A weekend with this book wouldn't be misspent.

  • Shane Lusher
    2019-04-20 02:11

    This is good, solid, British police procedural. It is populated with enough characters to keep you guessing it does keep you riveted until the end.Predictable it is not. It is, however a bit flat: the contrasting characters (old white guy vs. younger black woman) are a refreshing addition to a genre that sometimes needs a freshening up, but this relationship is not very well explored in the novel. It is clear what Harvey is trying to do here, however it is not a 100% success.I feel that 3 stars may be a bit harsh. I enjoyed reading it, and read it until the end, and I HAVE read worse. Perhaps that's the definition of three stars.

  • Leonore
    2019-04-12 07:17

    It was very mediocre. It kept putting me to sleep

  • Ron
    2019-04-14 07:09

    Didn't finish - not good not interesting

  • Lis
    2019-04-04 06:17

    A bit depressing, as much remains unresolved at the end.

  • Y-alex
    2019-04-08 02:12

    John Harvey has written a great amount of books. In which genres he only didn’t acted - westerns, PI novels, thrillers with heroes reminiscent of Mack Bolan (as an example, and as the most colorful and famous hero of the certain direction), police procedural novels and psychological thrillers. And His Majesty the Suspense is usually never left works created by Harvey. And all that these books have in common is a number of general features: the action develops tensely (internal tension (psychological) or external (environment, heroes’ actions, etc.) and you never know, for sure, in what vein the novel will be written.Recently, the author opted for a police procedural novels. John Harvey is the author of two very worthy series: the Charlie Resnick and Frank Elder sequences. And this novel is also directly related to the sub-genre of police procedural thrillers. That’s that also bribes very much in the works of John Harvey, is the fact that he can create very absolutely different characters in either series that he’d written. Externally, internally. Cultural layers, habits. Behavior, manner of speech, thoughts. Ideas, interests, hobbies. Strengths and weaknesses. But there is one thing they have in common - the desire to know the truth and solve the case (if it’s a detective story). And the most important difference that is so much, in fact, draws the reader to the pages of a novel, and does not allow to break away from this certain book, in particular, and makes the constant mystery’s reader to monitor further the writer's work, in general - is the possession of every hero/main character of his Voice.There are the two main characters - Karen Shields and Trevor Cordon – in the novel "Good Bait". And both are working in police. But they are very different people, which once again illustrates the written above. Karen Shields is working in a big city, Trevor Cordon - a servant of the law in a small town. Karen Shields have a lot of case - she is investigating several crimes at one time. Her cases are shuffled during the novel with admirable skills and harmony. Many details of the investigation, a lot of versions, many meetings with different characters, some of which very well may be possible suspects, conversations and interviews - and this is a big fat plus of the novel. Trevor Cordon is trying to help the daughter of former drug addict, who’d sunk into his soul. And he comes to London, to the ‘hunting grounds’ of Karen Shields. Seemingly different and unrelated to each other story lines are skillfully and harmonically united by the author at the end of the book.Besides the mentioned advantages, the novel is also characterized by: a unique and unforgettable style of narration; a little cold atmosphere of danger and hidden threat, which are piercing so many of a large cities; the social aspect of the daily lives of ordinary people; the problems of immigrants; a clear threat of criminal organizations from other countries, and a number of other more small details, which are transforming some novels in the books from which it is very difficult to break away.The book has the spirit a bit like in the Peter Temple’s novel "The Broken Shore" – the same complex and atmospheric narration of everyday police work and the daily choice between good and evil, which everybody must make on their own.Recommended if you like detailed police procedural novels.3.5/5.

  • Nick
    2019-04-21 05:27

    John Harvey is an accomplished novelist with several fine pieces to his credit. Good Bait: A Novel is Harvey’s latest offering and despite rave reviews and a good opening I found it ultimately disappointing.Having read several of Harvey’s previous efforts I found Good Bait had the strengths I have come to expect. Characters are finely drawn, interesting, with both flaws and admirable qualities. These are people I wanted to get to know, admire or despise and ultimately care about. The plot is robust, convoluted and complex. Dialogue is artfully used to move the story along. Two story lines, two smart cops, bring the reader glimpses of relationships hidden to the main characters but ultimately critical to the story’s final resolution.The first case involves the murder of a 17-year-old Moldovan boy found in a frozen pond, assigned to DCI Karen Shields and her team. But more bodies pile up and there is every appearance that all the mess is related. Separately, Cornwall DI Trevor Cordon is troubled by the death of a woman he’s known, is her death in the London Tube suicide, accident or murder? Well outside his realm of responsibility he takes time off and calls in favors to poke around until he become embroiled in a plot bigger than he could have expected.This is a police procedural. It gives a solid view of methods, problems and even technologies used by the UK police. It does this quite well. It is accurate, authentic and believable. But it like many crime stories it is ultimately a character study and here it falls short. While there is a stark contrast between the thirty-ish Jamaican Shields and the fifty-ish Cordon these differences are never fully developed. There is only a hint of the racism and sexism Shields must have experienced. She is efficient, a sound investigator and manager but she is sterile and left this reader wanting to know more. Condon is aptly described as a lonely, divorced old cop waiting for his retirement but his emotions and motivations are at times vague. There are glimpses of the workings of his mind but they are all too brief.I found the vast cast of characters, good guys and bad, a challenge to keep straight. The multitude of UK place and roads names, to this reader who is not familiar with the county, also became a distraction. I read the Kindle version of Good Bait. I found spelling and formatting errors throughout. This novel came from a major publishing house. Don’t they have editors or readers anymore? These errors, in addition to the British spell, Harvey is after all a British author, were a distraction but unfortunately, I have come to expect this from Kindle books.Good Bait, while a good read, was ultimately a disappointment. It needs more characterization and a conclusion that ties the initial murder back into the plot. I give it a lukewarm one thumb up.

  • Barbara
    2019-04-08 04:02

    GOOD BAITJohn HarveyFans of John Harvey’s Resnick series, or the shorter series featuring retired policeman Frank Elder, will find DI Trevor Cordon a different sort of character. Good Bait, as always a nod to Harvey’s love of music, presents two main characters, each with different stories and different lines of inquiry. The two characters, Cordon and DCI Karen Shields, do not cross paths and are not aware of each other throughout the book. Instead, a minor character brings together the story line at the conclusion. It does not feel like closure for either Cordon or Shields, but it is probably more kin to the truth than the ordinary neat endings we usually get in crime novels.Karen, who is based in London and works in the Homicide and Serious Crimes unit, is working on a case where a young man from Moldovan is found murdered. As she investigates, she steps into the territory of Special Branch, who are following suspects in drugs, prostitution and money laundering – in a big way. Instead of shooing her off, they keep her on the case, hoping that her Homicide investigation will make a few people nervous and give Special Branch the opportunity to slip into place.Cordon, living and working in South Cornwall, has a visit from a woman he has known professionally so to speak – she was a prostitute on his beat. Her young daughter had walked Cordon’s dog, until she grew old enough to follow in her mother’s professional foot steps. The mother comes to Cordon to ask him to find her daughter, who has gone to London to live and work. Cordon turns her down and within a few days he hears that the mother went to London to try to find her daughter, Letitia, and meets with an accident. She had died on the tracks of the metro. Cordon’s conscience bothers him enough that he tries to find out what happened to the mother and in doing so, finds the daughter. Letitia is mixed up with some unsavory characters who threaten her and her small son. She comes to Cordon for help and this time he doesn’t say no. With the help of a retired police friend in London, he tries to protect Letitia and bargain with the gangster who is the boy’s father. He is successful in neither, but he does come to the attention of Special Branch as the gangster is a major character in their investigation. All of the Resnick and Elder books are well-written and well-plotted. This book feels half-hearted. None of the characters came alive for me, and the plotted seemed superficial and used. It felt like the song “Good Bait”, and Harvey’s knowledge of every version ever made, was more important than the characters or the plot. Although I read it through to the end, I was bored through most of it. Whatever his next book is, I hope Harvey is back on his game. Barbara

  • Hilary Stephens
    2019-04-07 01:18

    Enjoyed this book, although I found the two stories a bit clunky to begin with. We seemed to lurch from one to the other which I don't really associate with John Harvey and his Resnick novels.

  • Monica
    2019-04-13 06:09

    The book was excellent. But first a word about something that drives me nuts - this book has been out in the UK for MONTHS. Long enough for there to be many many ex-library copies available for sale on ABE. The US edition is finally scheduled to come out 6 months from now. Why does this keep happening? And many thanks to ABE and Jabberwock Books in Horncastle for getting me a new copy in excellent condition, fairly priced, delivered from England in less than two weeks by our postal systems. Well done!The book has the well developed plot and characters to be expected from Harvey. Karen Shields is a London homicide Detective Chief Inspector. DI Trevor Cordon is a veteran cop in Panzance. Shields is assigned the murder of a young Moldavan man found murdered on Hampstead Heath. Cordon is drawn to London by the accidental death of a woman from Penzance with a troubled past, who had asked him to find her equally troubled daughter. As each follows the threads of one case, they are inevitably drawn together by a web of multinational crime and territorial warfare. Eastern European gangs are taking over drug sales and human trafficking. The locals are fighting back and people are getting killed.Shields and Cordon are both good characters - she is single black woman in a white male establishment. He is a loner with a failed marriage and an alienated son, looking forward to his 30 and out. And Jack Kiley, the private investigator who previously featured in several of Harvey's recent short stories has an important role to play. I hope we see more of all of them in the future.The title is a Tadd Dameron tune from the Basie songbook - nice. And Harvey gives us plenty of music and books to help us know his characters better - which I really like.

  • Trish
    2019-04-06 23:22

    I have a lot of time for John Harvey. I can’t figure out why he is not more widely read here in the U.S. He writes police procedurals, but with a deep intelligence and special flair. He does it all—the characterizations, the humanity, the procedure, the mystery--and then throws in a little music, a little talk about literature, food, wine…man, I just love this stuff. He is another of those authors whose books I save until I want a surefire weekend read-a-thon going on. Harvey is certainly the equal of Ian Rankin or Kate Atkinson, so if you like those popular authors, prepare for something special with Harvey. It looks like several of his books are being reissued this year or shortly thereafter. Definitely check him out if you haven’t already. He’s been writing a long time, and like Rankin and Atkinson, he just gets better as he goes along. Best of all, he provides us his influences at the end of this book, giving us some insight into his creative process. In fact, he mentions This stand-alone novel follows two separate investigations in different parts of England which end up circling the same house: the house of a drug and sex trafficker. We follow both threads which rarely overlap, one investigation led by a thirty-something black female homicide investigator based in London, and one led by an old copper close to retirement, shunted to a quiet out-of-the-way Cornwall precinct to finish off his duties. We like these folks. They don’t have their perceptions skewed, just sharpened, by their line of work.“Good Bait” is a jazz song, recorded many times by different artists. You might want to snag one of those recordings to prepare for settling down with this fine novel.

  • David Lowther
    2019-03-28 03:14

    I thoroughly enjoyed Good Bait. I've been a John Harvey fan ever since seeing Tom Wilkinson playing Resnick in the excellent TV series. Good Bait doesn't feature Resnick nor is it set in Nottingham but Harvey is equally good at painting convincing pictures of the locations for this novel - London and Cornwall.There are two stories which inevitably come together and the main characters of each are flawed yet decent hard working police officers. The tale is contemporary, dealing with drug dealing and people trafficking, spearheaded by criminals from several former iron curtain countries.The narrative inevitably involves tragedy and painstaking success. The lead characters both have difficulties in their domestic lives but Harvey strikes a satisfying balance between that and their professional existences, making Good Bait a first-class read.David Lowther. Author of The Blue Pencil. (www.thebluepencil.co.uk)davidlowtherblog.wordpress.com

  • E
    2019-04-20 04:21

    John Harvey can really write so much better than a lot of crime/mystery writers. I'm thinking his early years in poetry helped him hone the ability to write precise, tight, evocative prose. That said, I must admit I've enjoyed the other novels I read by him more than this one, though I definitely like the new heroine, Karen Shields, a black British detective of Jamaican heritage, not only for her character but also for the perspective it allows. I also like the working relationship and friendship she has with her white, middle-aged, old-school male DS, Ramsden. I also liked the parallel plot with the other inspector whose name escapes me now. I am not a big fan of organized crime plots, however, so that was where I lost some interest in this book. There were also an inordinate number of minor characters (mostly murdered gang members or their pals) that I gave up on trying to keep sorted out. I am hoping this will be the beginning of a series with a range of plots in the future.

  • Simon Jones
    2019-04-06 05:31

    A routine police procedural about criminal gangs involved in human trafficking.I've read some of John Harvey's Resnick novels and really enjoyed them. This novel, however, is not in the same class. It follows two interlocking plot lines, involving two different detectives, although they don't actually meet during the course of the book. There are a lot of characters - too many characters, in fact - and I occasionally got confused as to who was who.Ultimately, the story didn't hold my attention strongly enough. The plot lines didn't really connect and the characters weren't particularly engaging. It was okay - I wanted to know what happened, especially to one of the detectives, who ends up hiding out with a gangster's ex-girlfriend - but it was nothing more than okay.

  • Lynn
    2019-04-02 05:04

    Good Bait starts with the murder of a young Moldovian boy in England. DCI Karen Shields catches the case. Shields is soon burdened with several cases which include links to Eastern European gangs. DI Trevor Cordon is asked by Maxine Carlin to try to locate her daughter Letitia, a young woman who has battled addiction and ended up on the wrong side of the law a few times. The book dances through these and other storylines that cross paths, but without the main characters ever meeting. It is a good portrait of modern day crime and corruption. As always, John Harvey brings his love of music into the story. Well done, well written, but I still miss Charlie Resnick.

  • Julie
    2019-04-12 05:13

    A good effort but I like his other books (the Charlie Resnick series and especially the three Frank Elder books) better. It was a little disjointed and hard to follow the characters' motivations, especially detective Trevor Cordon's. Still, Harvey is a jazz lover and I always enjoy how he winds music into his stories, helping me find new recordings to listen to and love! The title composition is by Count Basie and pianist Tadd Dameron. If you're a jazz fan, check out his website (http://mellotone.co.uk/), where he frequently blogs about music.

  • Sharon Burgin
    2019-03-29 05:15

    Not up to John Harvey's usual standard. This is a departure from Harvey's normal detective Resnick series, introducing a couple of new characters, both police officers. One is a black woman based in London, the other an almost retired man living in Cornwall.Harvey tries to link their stories together, but is unsuccessful. I got lost trying to figure out who some of the characters were. By the end of the book I was still none the wiser in some cases. I assume the stories came to a satisfactory conclusion, but I'll have to read it again to make sure.

  • Jean
    2019-04-16 02:18

    I'm back to reading British police procedurals. This time I read (via OverDrive) Good Bait, the first John Harvey title I have read. His writing is very good and the characters are well developed. I especially liked the characters Karen Shields and Ramsden, her second-in-command. The story involves DCI Shields and a second DI whose cases intersect. The locales are London and Cornwall. I would recommend it to others who read Ian Rankin, Peter Robinson and the like.

  • Kerry
    2019-04-23 01:15

    This is turning into a bit of a habit I am giving yet another negative reviews this year and this is only the second or third book I have read so far lets hope my choice improves.This book was OK did really enjoy the descriptive language and felt that it did depict modern society as it is today however I felt the story lacked any substance really it kind of just floated along there was no suspense. An ok read for a Saturday afternoon Rendell and Christie this is not.

  • Ann Tonks
    2019-03-29 00:10

    Reading this as an e-book didn't really help me enjoy the experience but on reflection it felt like a well written thriller. Having a black female detective as the lead made for an interesting change of focus and it was matched by a parallel story of another detective taking time out to solve a linked mystery.I enojoyed Harvey's first series character, Resnick, and I hope to see more of Ms Black.

  • Samantha
    2019-04-16 07:18

    Read this for a reading group; my first by this author. Good plot, and I liked the idea of the parallel cases, but it just didn't work for me. I'm not sure why: I liked the characters of Karen and Cordon, but I didn't feel that the situation with Letitia was explained enough, and found the other case a bit difficult to follow at times. Might just be my brain! Looking at other reviews here, perhaps I might enjoy some of his other work.

  • Elizabeth Jones
    2019-03-24 01:31

    Another well written police procedural from Harvey. The main character, DCI Karen Shields, is not as well drawn as his other main protagonist, Charlie Resnick, although unfortunately the last Resnick novel has been written. Sometimes it is difficult for a male writer to write from a woman's point of view and that does show here. Still, the book interweaves two related plots expertly and gives us a sharply drawn portrait of Eastern European gangsters and their families.

  • Lisa C
    2019-04-08 06:20

    I'd been looking for some audiobooks that were similar to PBS's Lewis and Endeavor series -- a little darker and more serious than the average cozy British mysteries -- since the original Inspector Morse series by Colin Dexter is not available on CD. Although a little hard to follow as the protagonists were not as engaging as I prefer, all in all, this work fit the bill.

  • Carey Combe
    2019-04-13 23:17

    Interesting, well drawn female, black protagonist with, refreshingly, few chips on her shoulder, but an awareness of real life without it all getting her bogged down in philosophical ruminations or just too much drink . Realistic colleagues, but rather complicated plot line (never did really work out what was going on).

  • Chris
    2019-03-27 03:18

    This book was recommended to me by my brother in-law who is normally a great judge of strong crime fiction, but in this instance I have to disagree. The plot felt like the author was trying a bit too hard, and none of the characters, aside from the femme fatale Letitia, garnered much in the way of interest or empathy. I guess I need to try one of the Resnick series next.