The first thing Woodrow Cain sees when he steps off the train in New York City on February 9, 1942, is smoke from an ocean liner in flames in the harbor. It’s the Normandie, and word on the street is that it was burned by German saboteurs. “Ten lousy minutes in New York and already his new life felt as full of loss and betrayal as the one he’d left behind.”
What he left behind in a small North Carolina town was a wife who’d left him, a daughter in the care of his sister, and a career as a police officer marred by questions surrounding his partner’s murder. When he gets a job with the NYPD, he wants to believe it’s the beginning of a new life, though he suspects that the past is as tenacious as “a parasite in the bloodstream.”
It’s on the job that Cain comes in contact with a man who calls himself Danziger. He has the appearance of a “crackpot,” but he speaks five languages, has the manners of a man of means and education—and he appears to be the one person who can help Cain identify a body just found floating in the Hudson River. But who exactly is Danziger? He’s a writer of letters for illiterate immigrants on Manhattan’s Lower East Side—“a steadfast practitioner of concealing and forgetting” for his clients, and perhaps for himself: he hints at a much more worldly past. What and whoever he really is or has been, he has a seemingly boundless knowledge of the city and its denizens. And he knows much more than the mere identity of the floating corpse. For one thing, he knows how the dead man was involved in New York City’s “Little Deutschland,” where swastikas were proudly displayed just months before. And he also seems to know how the investigation will put Cain—and perhaps his daughter and the woman he’s fallen for—in harm’s way. But even Danziger can’t know that the more he and Cain investigate, the nearer they come to the center of a citywide web of possibly traitorous corruption from which neither of them may get out alive.
Rating: 5 stars
The Letter Writer by Dan Fesperman is a political thriller that will automatically entice its readers to it plot’s depth. Danger, intrigue, politics, and spies all masterfully woven for readers entertainment. I loved the sense of excitement and fear on every page. Readers don’t know what to expect until it happens. Dan Fesperman’s writing has a way of sucking its readers into its tale. The way the novel is told, it creates a sense of actually being there and experiencing it all with one’s own eyes and ears. The scenes have a way of popping, to life, and sends readers on a race for truth.
Dan Fesperman takes readers on a journey that involves a city full of corruption, danger, and murder. The Letter Writer is fantastic…tons of action, suspense, and keeps readers guessing. One man witnesses an ocean liner go up in flames, his past life is a mess and now he’s an NYPD officer in New York and his partner is murdered. This alone will leave readers on the edge of their seats in anticipation of what’s to come. The title of this novel comes into play when this police office, Cain, meets a man who is a writer. Together these two unlikely characters pair up to investigate the city’s crimes that involve a group using swastikas. When one wearing a swastika pops up dead the danger heats up…and as with all investigators, Cain’s life isn’t the only life that may be placed into danger…his daughter and a woman whom he’s falling for might just be pulled into this intricate and highly intense investigation. Stakes are high but so are the possibilities of surviving it all. This was the first time that I have read any work by Dan Fesperman and I loved it. A novel worthy of every readers’ attention…addictive, fast-paced, and thrilling. Overall, I highly recommend this stunning novel, The Letter Writer, to readers everywhere.