Now living in New York, ex-cop Frank Clemons investigates a brutal slashing
The sleek high-rises of Park Avenue make Frank Clemons uneasy. The former Atlanta homicide detective came to New York after a sickening murder case soured him on the South, but despite the glitz of his new surroundings and the beauty of the woman he shares them with, the city makes his skin crawl. Now a private eye, he is only at ease in the city’s darker corners, among the whores, gamblers, and pimps who call Eighth Avenue home. That affinity for the isolated is what draws him to Hannah Karlsberg, an elderly seamstress who deserved a better death than she got.
Hannah’s employer asks Clemons to find the victim’s next of kin, so the police can release the body for burial. As he learns about the dead woman’s past, which stretches back to the Lower East Side of the 1930s, Clemons becomes obsessed with unearthing the decades-old secret that led to her death.
Flesh and Blood is the second book in the Frank Clemons Mysteries, but you may enjoy reading the series in any order.
“Rich in character, complex in plot.” —Publishers Weekly
“Strong prose and steel-etched characters complete an enticing puzzle.” —Library Journal
“Thomas H. Cook triumphs at teaching an old dog some new tricks.” —The New York Times
Thomas H. Cook (b. 1947) is the author of nearly two dozen critically lauded crime novels. Born in Fort Payne, Alabama, Cook published his first novel, Blood Innocents, in 1980 while serving as the book review editor of Atlanta magazine. Two years later, on the release of his second novel, The Orchids, he turned to writing full-time.
Cook published steadily through the 1980s, penning such works as the Frank Clemons trilogy, a series of mysteries starring a jaded cop. He found breakout success with The Chatham School Affair (1996), which won an Edgar Award for best novel. His work has been praised by critics for his attention to psychology and the lyrical nature of his prose. Besides mysteries, Cook has written two true-crime books, Early Graves (1992) and the Edgar-nominated Blood Echoes (1993), as well as several literary novels, including Elena (1986). He lives and works in New York City.