The Letter Writer by Dan Fesperman is an intense, historical, sophisticated crime novel.
Imagine: NYC, a day like another....
Who was this man and why was killed? This one the first questions pooped up in the mind of detective Woodrow Cain, from the South of the USA to the Hudson River, NYC with his first case in his first work-day in the city. A homicide pretty difficult to decipher. A great luck, he knows it.
Thinking also that the smell of this corpse, considering his conditions, will follow him home, clothes included, the cop is in trouble for other reasons.
His colleagues discovered that he was recommended for this place in NYC so he started to be "hated" immediately.
His private ex-life left in the South is a discouraging mess, with an ex-wife in love for alcohol and for his ex best friend, let's put things like this, now not anymore in this world, and with a cute daughter with which he corresponds in a daily base via letter, a terrible father-in-law, and in general cold relatives, just able to put him down because of the shadows of his past.
We are in 1942, the city of New York is a fertile place rich of busy people of all the possible ethnicities.
In this contest, a man pretty secluded and private, living in a fascinating corner of the city, a letter writer, Jewish from Prussia, with great knowledge of five languages, Yiddish, German, Italian for telling you some, discovers that maybe the case of homicide he reads in the newspaper is connected with him.
He knows the dead man.
He knows him and he has copies of the letters written by him. And, if his conjectures true, maybe the story is more complicated than what it can appears.
This man is Danzinger. The chapters dedicated to him written in first person are fascinating, intense, powerful moments; Danziger in fact filters with the power of his mind people and events.
Important past, he will contact soon Cain and together will visit the city morgue where the corpses of the various John Does have been put, close to the public and historical hospital Bellevue.
They won't just discover the identity of this first person Herr Hansc as Danziger will call him but also that he is in good company. Another corpse, the one of Schaller will be discovered moments later and each of these corpses have a special mark: the one of people close to a Nazis group called Bundits.
Although illiterate, the two, Germans, sympathized for this dangerous Nazis group maybe because someone promised them a good work.
The story is more complicated when Danzinger will discover that crime will continue at a different level and the game more dangerous for obvious reasons...
At the same time, we will also follow the private adventures by Cain in love for a girl close to Danziger, the arrival of his daughter from the South, the discovery of the real identity of this fascinating letter-writer and his complicated past...
The Letter Writer is not just a beautiful historical crime book novel but also a wonderful and stunning portrait of the private lives of all the protagonists and the one of NYC the city that never sleeps.
I thank so much! Dan Fesperman :-) and Penguin Random House for the physical copy of this book!
Anna Maria Polidori