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    STREETS ON FIRE by John Shannon


    Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2002

    When a young interracial couple vanishes, private detective Jack Liffey is hired to investigate. It isn't a good time for Jack--he's worried about his girlfriend and his daughter, and it isn't a good time for Los Angeles, racked by racial tension and riot, but Liffey goes to work. The police and even the FBI have muddied the waters but the missing man's niece gives him his biggest clue. Now if Liffey can stay along long enough, he may learn the truth. Unfortunately for him, staying alive is difficult when a well armed and determined group of Christian extremists are after you.

    Author John Shannon (see other BooksForABuck reviews of novels by this author) delivers an emotionally compelling and satisfying mystery. Liffey's attempts at detection are bounded at one side by his daughter's attempts to help--which end up creating any father's ultimate nightmare--and at the other by the riots that threaten to send Los Angeles into flames. Clinging to his much abused moral code, Liffey must survive both white extremists and African-American gang bangers.

    Shannon brings a left-wing slant to his writing, but this doesn't keep him from delivering an exciting and fast-paced adventure.

    Four Stars

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