When I find an author whose work I really like, I tend to buy all their books and then space them out, to read over a period of time--prolonging the pleasure. In the case of Carsten Stroud, having started with his most recent book, Black Water Transit, I chased down all his previous books and am taking my time reading them.
Sniper's Moon, Stroud's first novel, is like a fireworks display. It starts off with a bang, then dazzles one with bursts of patterns against a night sky. This look at the inside/outside life of an NYPD sniper, a second generation cop, is a stunning piece of work--insightful, compelling and melancholy.
Managing with great skill to weave together simultaneous plot lines, the narrative takes off in high gear and doesn't let up for a moment. All the characters are fully three-dimensional, even the most minor, and while there is a great deal of violence it doesn't get in the way of the story. And when, roughly at the midpoint of this book, the hero Frank Keogh is accused of killing two fellow cops and takes off to try to unravel things from a distance, there ensues what is one of the best hide-and-pursuit segments I've read in a long time.
While I guessed who was the villain of the piece early on, the author manages to pull off a nice surprise ending that is unexpected.
Some of the writing is beautifully lyrical; the insights into the minds of the men and women involved is refreshingly honest. This is a terrific book.
Very highly recommended.