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A rat scurried into a dim side room, and a withered black face receded into the darkness. The face belonged to a junkie named Tonio Morris. He was one of the many bottom-of-the-food-chain junkies, near death and too weak to cut out a space of their own on the second floor; later, when the packets were delivered to those with cash, they'd trade anything they had, anything they'd stolen that day, or any orifice on their bodies for some rock or powder.When PI Derek Strange is hired by Chris Wilson's mother to find out why her son, a black cop, was killed by a white cop, Terry Quinn, on a dark night in that no man's land, Strange figures that the answer is painfully clear: a typical case of mistaken identity, fueled by the assumptions and preconceptions of Quinn's innate racism. But what Strange finds is a tentative kinship with Quinn, who is desperate to proclaim himself "color-blind." Kicked off the force and convinced that there's more to his own story, Quinn asks to join Strange in his investigation. As the two pry into the past, drifting through the neighborhoods both men have known all their lives, they find themselves enmeshed in a tangle of cold-blooded competition and heated personal enmity.
Pelecanos generally has a light touch with the treacherous quagmire of -isms, veering only occasionally into sententious meanderings about the consequences of an economically and racially divided society. His wry humor, particularly in his descriptions of Earl and Ray, the heroin middlemen who bring the concept of white trash to a depressingly low level, leavens the novel's noir bleakness. And Strange himself is a compelling character: a middle-aged black man who has seen more of life's callousness than he cares to admit, and whose jitteriness about personal commitment speaks volumes about his own expectations for happiness. A strong character and a good read--Pelecanos fans can settle in and look forward to Strange's next appearance. --Kelly Flynn
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
i have read 160 pages and still am not compelled to continue this book to the end. the plot is boring and predictable . it does not pull you forward, wondering what happens next. Read morePublished on June 3 2004
I read this novel after reading SOUL CIRCUS and this was one of the prequels to that novel which unfortunately is probably the last novel that the character Terry Quinn will appear... Read morePublished on May 15 2004 by Sal Paradise
Dull slow story, dull characters. I'd read Walter Mosley over this Pelecanos when it comes to stories involving black characters.Published on March 21 2004
Not much of a mystery - more like a sociological treatise masquarading as a mystery. Race is on center stage in this book, but only in a slipshod way. Read morePublished on Jan. 15 2004
'Right As Rain' is my first taste of the writing talents of George Pelecanos. I expected a moderately enjoyable yet forgettable crime novel. Read morePublished on Jan. 23 2003 by lazza
This was my first Pelecanos book, and I am fairly new to the modern crime genre. I've read Dennis Lehane and have enjoyed all his books. Read morePublished on Jan. 13 2003
Right as Rain captures the complex social, economic, and racial environment in our nation's capital. Read morePublished on Jan. 2 2003 by Edith Frias
Right as Rain is a good airplane book. It held my interest and passed the time. I found his attention to geographic detail both intreguing and annoying. Read morePublished on Oct. 30 2002