GLASS RAINBOW, THE by James Lee Burke - SIGNED FIRST EDITION BOOKSee all titles by James Lee Burke.
Beloved Burke hero Detective Dave Robicheaux returns to New Iberia to solve a series of grisly murders.
James Lee BurkeŐs eagerly awaited new novel finds Detective Dave Robicheaux back in New Iberia, Louisiana, and embroiled in the most harrowing and dangerous case of his career. Seven young women in neighboring Jefferson Davis Parish have been brutally murdered. While the crimes have all the telltale signs of a serial killer, the death of Bernadette Latiolais, a high school honor student, doesnŐt fit: she is not the kind of hapless and marginalized victim psychopaths usually prey upon. Robicheaux and his best friend, Clete Purcel, confront Herman Stanga, a notorious pimp and crack dealer whom both men despise. When Stanga turns up dead shortly after a fierce beating by Purcel, in front of numerous witnesses, the case takes a nasty turn, and CleteŐs career and life are hanging by threads over the abyss.
Adding to RobicheauxŐs troubles is the matter of his daughter, Alafair, on leave from Stanford Law to put the finishing touches on her novel. Her literary pursuit has led her into the arms of Kermit Abelard, celebrated novelist and scion of a once prominent Louisiana family whose fortunes are slowly sinking into the corruption of LouisianaŐs subculture. AbelardŐs association with bestselling ex-convict author Robert Weingart, a man who uses and discards people like Kleenex, causes Robicheaux to fear that Alafair might be destroyed by the man she loves. As his daughter seems to drift away from him, he wonders if he has become a victim of his own paranoia. But as usual, RobicheauxŐs instincts are proven correct and he finds himself dealing with a level of evil that is greater than any enemy he has confronted in the past.
The sights, smells, and sounds of the Louisiana bayous become sensory experiences in Burke's novels, and death is a constant presence that threatens to overwhelm his angels with "tarnished wings." Set against the backdrop of an Edenic paradise threatened by pernicious forces, James Lee BurkeŐs The Glass Rainbow is already being hailed as perhaps the best novel in the Robicheaux series.
The Glass Rainbow by James Lee Burke
Reviewed by John
I first discovered Dave Robicheaux many years ago, and fell in love with the way James Lee Burke reveals the taste, touch and feel of Louisiana as seen through the eyes of the New Iberia Detective, his family, friends and a whole cadre of bad guys.
In the 23 years that have slipped by since Robicheaux first appeared in The Neon Rain, he has revealed his character, with all of it’s faults, scars, and limitations in 18 novels, none more compelling than this year’s The Glass Rainbow.
The brutal murder of two young girls guides Robicheaux into a head-on collision with ice-cold characters, disfranchised souls, and secrets best left untold. The Glass Rainbow has a wide cast from the get go. Kermit is the wealthy grandson of Timothy Abelard, a man with a history rooted in the darkest days of slavery. Old-time friend and colleague, Clete Purcell, can smell death on Timothy Abelard, foreshadowing events that fall neatly in order as the story unfolds. Death is an ever-present guest of the Abelards, and this time his name is Robert Weingart, an ex-con and bestselling author with a seedy past and an unrelenting taste for blood.
Noteworthy is Alafair, Dave’s daughter, a young woman home from college, working on her first novel. Her character has evolved over the years and is now much more than Dave’s adopted daughter. She has become a remarkable young woman and her relationship with Dave is woven flawlessly into the story. (One must ask if art imitates real life, with Burke’s daughter Alafair a bestselling author.)
In The Glass Rainbow Dave Robicheaux must employ all that he knows, trust his training, history and instinct to guide him to the insight that will let him make sense of the seemly unconnected events that are at the heart of this mystery. The Glass Rainbow concludes with events that will forever alter, not only Robicheaux himself, but everyone he loves, guaranteeing a deeper resonance in future novels.
Do not miss The Glass Rainbow; it is James Lee Burke’s finest.