Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sara Paretsky’s Hardball, a Review

From The Financial Times --

Hardball --

Review by Christopher Fowler --
February 22 2010 --

By Sara Paretsky

Victoria Iphigenia Warshawski is a Chicago private detective bedeviled by fluctuating family loyalties, old enemies, new allies and inconvenient neighbours. In Paretsky’s 13th Warshawski novel, Vic’s chaotic world is developing ever-deepening layers. She agrees to locate a gang member who vanished 40 years earlier on the eve of a legendary blizzard. He had been hired to help protect Martin Luther King when riots erupted over Dr King’s attempts to desegregate city housing. As the political ramifications involve her own family history, Warshawski finds that Petra, her young cousin newly arrived to aid a political campaign, has possibly been abducted.

This second plot strand allows Warshawsky to reveal her more human side, as the wealthy new-gen fem Petra encourages Vic to justify her old-school feminism. Within a racial melting pot, Paretsky hits her own personal best; Hardball takes the thinking woman’s detective to a new level of excellence.

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