Thursday, August 16, 2018

Icepick by Phillip DePoy

First Sentence:  Sammy 'Icepick' Franks drove his snappy black Lincoln town car up to the docks at three in the morning.
Two Seminole children were witnesses to a dog being shot and a body being dumped.  Foggy Moskowitz is Child Protection Services in Fry's Bay, Florida, so it makes sense that Officer Brady would call him at 4 a.m.  Foggy becomes even more involved when Officer Watkins identifies the body as someone he'd been friends with when he lived in the Bronx.  But nothing is ever simple after learning the children's mother, along with a number of other Seminole women, is missing, and getting her back involves trips back to New York, and on to Oklahoma with Shaman John Horse.
DePoy creates wonderful imagery—"I never knew Florida could be so cold before I came here from Brooklyn.  But with Blake Road, it wasn't so much the temperature. It was more the way a tombstone feels, or the sound of a late-night train."  With his introduction to Topalargee (the Wonder), the little girl, one receives a very good, succinct description of Foggy's background. 
Not only does DePoy write unique, interesting characters, but one can appreciate that he creates females who are intelligent and strong, regardless of their age.  The names of the children can be a bit confusing at first. The girl is Topalargee/The Wonder/Sharp and is very good with knives, while her brother is Little Cloud, an excellent tracker. John Horse is the type of character one always enjoys, especially if one likes characters who are somewhat mystical—"Some people in his family told me he was over a hundred years old.  Two told me that his body was dead but his spirit was unwilling to go along with it. What you'd call a Trickster, with a capital T."
A plot twist sends Foggy and John Horse to New York City.  The reference to Nixon's Organized Crime Control Act reminds one of the time period in which the book is set.  There are several really well-done plot twists and that feeling of never knowing who one should trust.  Trying to sort the bad guys from the really bad guys becomes a challenge.
"Icepick" has unique characters, great dialogue, humor, and a plot that keeps one guessing.  Whenever one starts to think of Foggy as relatively harmless, he proves he is anything but.  There's a bit of Kipling here, and a wonderful ending.
ICEPICK (CPS-Foggy Moskowitz-Florida/NY/Oklahoma-Contemp) – G+
      DePoy, Phillip – 3rd in series
      Severn House Publishers; First World Publication edition – Sept 2018   

1 comment:

  1. This sounds really atmospheric. And it intrigues me that it's about the Seminole people. I don't know enough about that culture. It's good to hear the characters are well-developed, too. I'm glad you enjoyed it.