Monday, March 31, 2014

dust to dust

dust to dust
kovac/liska #2
tami hoag
published 2000

Sorry.  The single word was written on the mirror.  In front of it hung the body of Andy Fallon, a Minneapolis Internal Affairs cop.  Was it suicide?  Or a kinky act turned tragic accident?  Either way, his death wasn't a crime.  The investigation will be a formality, a duty that veteran Homicide detective Sam Kovac isn't looking forward to.  He doesn't want to spend any more time than he has to in the bleak, empty world of the victim's father, Iron Mike, Kovac's old mentor and a department legend.  It's too much like looking into his own future.  But Kovac has a sixth sense for crime, and it's buring.

Together with his partner, the wisecracking, ambitious Nikki Liska, Kovac begins to dig at the too-neat edges of Fallon's death, uncovering one motive and one suspect after another.  The shadows of suspicion fall deeply not only on the city's power elite, but into the very heart of the police department itself.

While Ashes to Ashes was touted as the first Kovac/Liska book they merely had background roles in the book.  Kovac was present more than Liska was, but not much.  Here in Dust to Dust they are both in the forefront working together, but also separately on two different cases.  Both of them involving the police department.

Kovac's case is personal and he's pretty much the only one who thinks that a crime actually occurred.  Liska is following up on a closed case, much to the irritation of their boss.

There are times when I wonder why Liska makes such dumb choices, or ignores something that any self respecting cop would ignore.  And there are times when Hoag goes off describing something or added a scene that was completely unnecessary.  The book was longer than it should have been and to be honest, there were no surprises anywhere.

Who else could the killer have been?  The players could all only fit into certain roles so the pieces all fit in much faster than I think Hoag was aiming for.  

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