by Miles Corwin
You’ll have to bear with an awkward cliche-riddled opening as Asher Levine’s former Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) boss tries to entice him to come back to work in the LAPD’s elite Felony Special Unit.
Asher had quit in disgust 11 months earlier when the key witness in a murder case he was working was shot and he was reprimanded for his handling of it.
But now, Asher is tired of serving subpoenas and dragging reluctant witnesses to court for his drug-addicted attorney brother. The LAPD needs a detective like Ash to solve the murder of a retired LAPD detective, whose cop father was a buddy of the police chief.
Ash’s plan is to work the new case, while picking up the scattered pieces of the old case that still haunts him.
He’s an unusual character in a police procedural: he lives in a loft in downtown L.A., loves Miles Davis’ music, is Jewish and a veteran Israel Defense Force (IDF) paratrooper. He disappointed his parents by becoming a cop instead of a lawyer like his brother.
He could never build a bond with his father, a survivor of the Treblinka concentration camp, and regularly disappoints his mother by not making Shabbes dinner or dating a nice Jewish girl.
Both the old and the new cases appear to be unsolvable. Like many police procedurals, this one requires patience as Ash digs for clues and rattles the bushes of South Central L.A. for information. While it does have moments of stunning drama and action, this plot will test your ability to suspend disbelief.
In the end, it appears as if there are more bad guys in the LAPD than there are on the streets.
Published in 2010, Kind of Blue was followed by Midnight Alley (2012).