Nobody does a better job of capturing the tensions between various minority groups in Brooklyn than Steve Neil Johnson in the Doug Orlando Mysteries, FINAL ATONEMENT and FALSE CONFESSIONS. Yet he expresses so much compassion for the characters and such a love for the neighborhoods that you feel like you've lived there your whole life and fought their battles with them. Doug Orlando, a Brooklyn Homicide cop, is a compelling and haunting character: ostracized by his fellow cops for testifying against his brutish former patrol-car partner, Briggs, in a grand jury probe, his life in danger as much from other cops as criminals. The heart of the story, though, is the relationship between Orlando and his partner of many years, Stewart, which is troubled but filled with love and humor. The plot itself is ripped-from-the-headlines: when a politically active right-wing rabbi is murdered in a bizarre manner in the city's Hasidic stronghold, Williamsburg, Orlando must track down the killer before hostilities between minority groups in the overcrowded city explode. The neighborhoods are so vividly described, you feel like you could taste them. Astute political commentary and memorable characters that stay with you long after you've finished the book make these novels special. Johnson's style is so sharp it cuts like a knife, and both books move at a rapid-fire pace that keeps you turning the pages. I highly recommend this captivating book.