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The Big Silence (Abe Lieberman Mysteries) Mass Market Paperback – Nov 2001

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Mass Market Paperback, Nov 2001
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 11 reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Good police procedural 11 Nov. 2000
By Harriet Klausner - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Chicago police officers Abe Lieberman and Bill Hanrahan are partners affectionately dubbed by their peers as the "Rabbi and the Priest". Their latest case involves mob accountant Mickey Gornitz willing to testify against his boss if certain conditions are met. Mickey insists he will only talk with Abe, who was a high school classmate several decades ago. Mickey also demands that his ex-wife and teenage son receive full protection though he has not seem either of them in fifteen years until the informer disappears into the witness protection program. Reluctantly, the Cook County District Attorney's Office agrees.
However, almost immediately after the moment that the Boston cop handed over the former wife and son to Bill, thugs kidnap the duo. When the abduction includes murder, Bill blames himself and not the brass who thought the wife and kid were low priority. As Abe works on a couple of cases and some personal shtick, he tries to help his partner deal with a severe case of depression caused by deep feelings of guilt.
The Abe Lieberman police procedural series is constantly one of the best the sub-genre has to offer. The current tale, THE BIG SILENCE, is an intriguing look at Chicago, various ethnic groups, and relationships. The police investigation is engaging because no great revelation occurs, just hard work. Stuart M. Kaminsky other sleuths (see Rostnikov and Peters) are very good and deserve fan accolades, but clearly neither one holds a candle to the Lieberman books.

Harriet Klausner
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Lieberman's tales just become deeper and r icher and better! 15 April 2004
By J. Clemons - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
What a wonderful book! Virtually every character, small in part or large, transmits that evanescent hint of reality--reality soaked with love, hate, unsavory trade-offs between criminals and cops, between cops and cops (Our televison cops that give most Americans their conception of the police is unrealistically and inordinately distorted--towards the positive, which for us as viewers means cops that are really, really tough with the subtlety of an 100-mile hurricane ripping through a small town. In Law and Order, aren't most criminals one-diminsional, even if depicted favorably, usually when one of the cops or attys falls in love with one of the baddoes. Kaminsky says, "These men are cops; we depend on them, but they are very imperfect, very willing to deal with ruthless, even sadistic criminals, to make the concession that should result in the greater legal and justice good. But putting El Perro's men back on the street is really better than a sharpie who cozens old people. Anyway, Lieberman's novels have improved (the first is the worst and can profitably be skipped, "Lieberman's Folly": but try to read the rest in sequence. Although the plots are fairly discrete, the characters reoccur and we learn more and more about them as we proceed through the books in this series. The characters speak to the heart, mind and imagination that reaches Keatsian goals (if not his genius). This novel has a few main plots--one focussing on Lieberman's partner, his drinking problems, his difficulty in marrying a beautiful Chinese woman (He's big Irish, all the way); another plot strand focusses on Lieberman's difficult daughter, who has basically abandoned her children to Lieberman and his wife--she's remarried, lives in CA, and like so many of us has great difficulty living a life that is not based on depression, obsession with the "cold and analytical"; she blames Lieberman for her problems, but also realizes that his wisdom, his love may be her only chance for happiness (flickers of) and success in marriage with her new black husband. The honesty of the character interactions, their stances and relationships allows us to see characters not as such but as almost Shakespearean, universal, yet individuals that we can palpably touch and, at least partially, understand. This particular novel, of all of Kaminsky's many novels, from several series, sharply, richly, and genuinely etches real people (e.g. Gornitz, Phil Blitzein, Hanranahan, Kearney, Bess, the grandkids and on and on. This novel loves humanity by giving us people and stories, transcending mystery/suspense genre, but working effectively with its requisites, who help us think about life--its joys, its drama, its hypocrisy, its pettiness, and in the case of the dog--a stroke of authorial genious nonpareil--finding a ray of hope in the kindness of a detective, who looks like a weary, somewhat cranky dog (Lieberman), but lights up the lives of so many (sure he's too good to be true) but gives us readers hope that we might make a positive difference and that a life not beset with problems is really not a life at all. Lieberman's insonmia, his slightly acridly ironic humor, his incorrigible daughter and all those criminals, big and small, who make Lieberman's life a means for us to enrich our own. Great book. Also read Russian series and the three Fonesca novels--Kaminsky entertains inexorably, proses beautifully and brings the dectective novel up to a level that only Bill James and Michael Connelly can approximate. Not airline books (Patterson) but still easy to read, and easy to read twice. Read him
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Lieberman, a character that lives beyond the page! 19 Dec. 2001
By Kcorn - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I love every single book in the Lieberman series but this one is a particular favorite. As always, Lieberman is both worldly wise and all too human, with weaknesses that make him just that more believable and strangely lovable as well.
This time around, Lieberman and his associate, Hanrahan, are trying to guard the ex-wife and son of a mob informant while juggling the daily frustrations of their own lives. While the mystery will keep your attention, what is equally wonderful, to my mind, are Lieberman and Hanrahan, two guys who jump from the pages in vivid detail. Kaminsky is a wonderful writer and I hope more than mystery buffs discover him. He deserves the attention!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A brilliant novel 31 Dec. 2000
By Steven W. Slesinger - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Dark, yet humorous. The entire Lieberman series is fantastic (I've read them all) but this one is the best. The plots are complex yet they move at breakneck speed. You really get involved in the characters and their lives. This cop series focuses on the minds and lives of the police, rather than focusing on the criminals. This series is tops. The only other writers that come close are Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane and S.J. Rozan.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Once Again Kaminsky Gives Us a Good Story 16 Oct. 2006
By Grey Wolffe - Published on
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Abe Lieberman is a thin, jewish, sixty year old police detective in Chicago; his wife is the president of his synagogue; his daughter, who is on her second marriage is married to a black pathologist and live in the bay area; his grandchildren (from his daughter's first marriage live with him). His partner is a big ex-football playing Irishman named William Hanrahan; who is divorced, a recovering alcoholic (as is his younger son), and is in love with an Asian woman he wants to marry. On the Chicago force they are known as the 'Rabbi and Father Murphy'.

The cases in this book are not of that much interest, but it is the inter- action of Lieberman and his partner with a myriad of characters from multiple cultures that make this a worthwhile read. Kaminsky is great at getting the nuances of speech and the causes behind the actions of his characters to be so honest and real. A worthy addition to the series.
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