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Fall Of A Cosmonaut Hardcover – Sep 21 2000


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Mysterious Press (Sept. 21 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0892966688
  • ISBN-13: 978-0892966684
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.5 x 2.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 476 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #584,485 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Porfiry Petrovich Rostnikov, chief inspector in the Office of Special Investigation, had not witnessed such a sight in his more than half century of life. Read the first page
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By A Customer on Feb. 13 2004
Format: Hardcover
Kaminsky writes 3, no 4, series of crime novels. The Toby Peters stories are enjoyable but only that. The Leiberman series has a bit more substance, but still read like the slow second movement of the standard 4 movement symphony. The Fonseca series has just begun. Vengeance was above average (compared to all mystery/suspense/crime/ whatever..writers). Retribution was much in the Leiberman vein--slow, winding down, world-weary ad nauseam. Where Kaminsky SHINES is in his Russian/Rostnikov series. Not all the dozen or so novels have been equally good, but even the weakest presents real, alive, fleshed-out characters, beginning with the truly inimitable Rostnikov ("the washtub") and his vampire-like underling Emile Karpo, probably the most striking and original continuing character in any myster/suspense series of ALL time. But it is the world of Moscow and the world of the highly-intelligent weight lifting Rostnikov that with his Jewish wife, playwright son (seques into detective), the Yak, the silver haired Colonel and all the colorful characters and settings that make this series vibrate with life. This latest novel, perhaps his best (and, sad to say, perhaps his last) is set up with the usual three plots, unrelated, except for Rostkinov getting involved in more than one. The plots involve the film industry, the space industry and the government funded paranormal acitivities research section. If you haven't read prevevious entries in this series, you will be impressed by this novel with its depth and color and unusually well-done dialogue (for a mystery). But having read all the previous novels, save the first, it is not only a good book but a triumph of Kaminsky in creating and forcing the reader to love and appreciate his characters not just as cogs in a plot (e.g.Read more ›
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By TundraVision on March 28 2002
Format: Hardcover
Life goes on for investigators with the Office of Special Investigation, Moscow, former Soviet Union. In his Porfiry Petrovich Rostnikov series, Stuart M. Kaminsky has deftly transplanted the Ed McBain police procedural to Russia: individual detectives, each having his/her own serial back stories, investigating different cases. And through the time span of the series, the reader also watches the Soviet Union disintegrate. In this, the 13th installment of the series, Putin is in power in Russia and the men and sole woman of the OSI are tracking down a missing Mir Cosmonaut, the theft of a major motion picture negative on the life of Tolstoy - due to premiere soon in Cannes, and the murder of a research physiologist at the Moscow Center for the Study of Technical Parapsychology.
This is not a "cozy" Jessica Fletcher-type murder mystery series. The brooding of the Russian soul is frequently mentioned. "The Yak," former KGB functionary, is directing Rostnikov, and the one-legged decorated veteran of the War Against Nazi Aggression must "walk a tight-rope" between his conscience and the ever-shifting Powers That Be. The spectre of Chernobyl and the tension and power-struggles in the wake of the Soviet Union loom constantly in the background. Prolific author Kaminsky gives the reader a feel for the people and politics while raconting a riveting tale.
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Format: Hardcover
Stuart Kaminsky makes no secret that the Inspector Profiry Rostnikov novels are inspired by the "87th Precinct" books by Ed McBain. Indeed, Rostnikov himself can ofter be found re-reading a dog-eared copy of one of the 87th Precinct books. Like their model, the Rostnikov novels usually depict a detective squad working multiple cases, seeking the little clues which eventually will point their way to solutions to the mysteries. The world of Inspector Rostnikov -- the Soviet Union and, in the later novels, post-Soviet Russia -- is even more morally ambiguous than McBain's fictional city of Isola, and Rostnikov often finds himself between serving justice and enforcing the law. I find Rostnikov, the gentle, physically powerful detective whose greatest relaxation is found in repairing faulty plumbing, to be one of the most appealing characters in modern crime fiction, a man both wise and compassionate. "Fall of a Cosmonaut" is another strong addition to the series, with the detectives pursuing three seperate mysteries while the stories of their personal lives advance yet further. I must emphasize that the Rostnikov books really should be read in order for maximimum enjoyment, as the characters and the crises in their lives progress from novel to novel and much would be lost if their futures were to be relieved too soon by reading out of order.
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Format: Hardcover
The economic and political mess of Russia provides prime hunting grounds for Kaminsky's Edgar Award-winning ("A Cold Red Sunrise") Porfiry Rostnikov series. "Fall of a Cosmonaut" opens with a prologue set in the crumbling Mir Space station where Rostnikov's name is mentioned by cosmonaut Tsimion Vladovka in the midst of a major unexplained disaster.
A year later, Tsimion is missing and Rostnikov, head of Special Investigations, receives an ominous order to find him. Meanwhile, brooding Marxist stoic Emil Karpo and his unassuming partner Arkady Zelach investigate murder in a lab for paranormal research and Elena Timofeyeva (recently affianced to Rostnikov's son Iosef) and Sasha Tkach, his habitual depression overlaid by a peculiar euphoria since his life has bottomed out, are sent to recover a a great Russian epic film being held for exorbitant ransom.
The character-driven narrative shifts from case to case, encompassing the points of view of each investigator as well as various witnesses, victims and villains. The tone is a cross between Ed McBain's 87th Precinct (a particular favorite of Rostnikov's) and the Zen practicality of Janwillem van de Wetering. Personal developments entwine with investigations and everything is complicated by the daily difficulties of Russian life and occasional political incursions.
Kaminsky, who also writes the Toby Peters and Abe Lieberman series, delivers another well-constructed, well-written entertainment.
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