Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Gun Games by Faye Kellerman

    There is little more tragic today than the number of teenage suicides.    Faye Kellerman tackles this subject head on in the latest entry in her ever popular Decker/Lazarus series.

    With Gun Games Rina and Decker have an addition to their household - 15-year-old Gabriel Whitman, son of psychopath Chris Donatti, a piano prodigy and an enigma.  His parents have opted out of his life - his mother is somewhere in India and has a new baby, his dad, as he’s quick to tell Dylan, a rough, bullying teenager who threatens him, “...he’s a pimp....He owns whorehouses in Nevada.”  Rina and Decker are certainly willing to raise Gabe  but they may never really know him.

    As the story opens the local paper is featuring a death notice - 15-year-old Gregory Hesse took his own life.  It takes little time for Wendy,  his mother, to go to the West Valley police station insisting, “I don’t care what the coroner says, my son didn’t commit suicide.”

    Impressed by her determination and belief Decker decides to look further into the boy’s death.  He finds that the gun used was stolen, and before he gets much further there is another teen suicide - a sixteen-year-old girl.  Both teenagers attended Bell and Wakefield, a tony school for the rich and pampered as well as a crusher academically.  Additionally, there appears to be a really bad group of kids who favor guns and hurting others.

    Decker’s investigation grows darker as he thinks about the boy living in his home - Gabe is home schooled, pretty much on his own.  Well, not really on his own as he has fallen in love with Yasmin, a 14-year-old who loves opera.  They meet every morning at a coffee shop.  Things go from good to worse for the young couple when Dylan’s vengeful girlfriend frames Gabe by screaming rape.

    No spoilers here, so grab a copy of Gun Games, a tale both sad and frightening.

    - Gail Cooke

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