It was bad news walking through the door.
They were coming his way: five of them—three guys, two girls—all of them looking older than him by a couple of years but probably still in high school. The guys had some muscle, but none of them was steroidal, meaning he could take any of them one-on-one. Collectively, he didn’t stand a chance. Besides, Gabe wasn’t spoiling for a fight. Last time that happened, he messed up his hand—temporarily. He’d been lucky. Maybe he’d be lucky again. If not, he had to be smart.
He pushed his glasses up on his nose and kept his eyes on the book until the group was on top of him. Even then, he didn’t look up. Nothing was going to happen to him inside a Starbucks . . . staring at the page in front of him, his mind going a mile per sec.
“You’re sitting in my seat,” one of the guys said.
His dad had always emphasized that if he were about to be jumped, it was best to take on the leader. Because once the leader was gone, the others fell like dominoes. Gabe counted to five before he looked up. The guy who spoke was the biggest of the three.
“Excuse me?” Gabe said.
“I said you’re sitting in my seat.” And as if to emphasize the point, he pulled back his jacket, giving Gabe a five-second peek at the gun stuck into his waistband—positively one of the worst places to keep an unharnessed weapon. There were only two people in the world that Gabe would take crap from and he wasn’t looking at either one of them. To acquiesce would be a mistake. On the other hand, to confront would also be a mistake. Luckily, the dude gave him an out.
Gabe held up an index finger. “Do you mind?” Slowly and care- fully, he pulled back the guy’s jacket with his finger and stared at the gun. “Beretta 92FS with some kind of a custom grip.” A pause. “Sweet.” He let the jacket drop. “You know the company just came out with an advanced model—a 96A or something like that. Same thing as the 92 series except it has a higher magazine capacity.”
Gabe stood up. Nose to nose, he was a couple of inches taller than the gunslinger, but the height differential wasn’t something he was about to flaunt. He took a half step back, giving them both some personal space.
“I like the plinkers…like the 87 Cheetah .22LR. First of all, it’s got great reliability. Second, it’s one of those ambidextrous pieces. I’m right-handed, but I got a real strong left. You know how it is. You never know which hand it’s gonna be convenient to use.”
They were locked in a staring contest, Gabe’s focus on the dude with the piece. As far as he was concerned, the other four didn’t exist. Then, with a sudden, fluid motion, Gabe stepped aside and held out his hand, magnanimously offering the dude his seat. “Be my guest.”
A few seconds ticked by, each waiting for the other to blink.
Finally, the guy said to Gabe, “Have a seat.”
From the book GUN GAMES: A Decker/Lazarus Novel by Faye Kellerman. Copyright © 2011 by Faye Kellerman. Reprinted with permission of William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.
Melding a character’s family life with his or her police work takes real skill, and Faye Kellerman performs it expertly in every book she writes. In Gun Games, a gripping mystery involving a secret clique of wealthy—and vicious—teens brings home to LAPD detective Peter Decker and his wife, Rina Lazarus, the tragic effects of teenage bullying.
Decker and Rina welcomed 15-year-old Gabriel Whitman, the son of a troubled former friend, into their home. While the enigmatic teen seems to be adapting, Decker knows too well the secrets adolescents keep—witnessed by the suicide of another teen, Gregory Hesse, a student at Bell and Wakefield, one of the city's most exclusive prep schools.
Knowing her son hated guns and wasn't depressed, Gregory's mother convinces Decker to look deeper. What he finds disturbs him enough to launch a full investigation with his trusted team, Sgt. Marge Dunn and Det. Scott Oliver. But the case becomes complicated by the suicide of another Bell and Wakefield student.
Before the case is over, all its terrifying ramifications will take Decker and his detectives down a dark alley of twisted allegiances and unholy alliances, culminating into a heart-stopping point of no return.
Hardcover Book : 384 pages
Publisher: William Morrow & Co, Inc. ( January 03, 2012 )
Item #: 13-481081
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.875inches
Product Weight: 14.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
A great author and storyteller disappoints this time with a book about adolescent culture that reads as if written for an adolescent audience. Much of the book is about a first teenage love story told from the perspective of the teens. It's repetitive and boring, not suspenseful. The last third of the book picks up with a surprise ending, tying all the story themes together. For me, this was not enough to redeem the book. I say, "Read the series, but skip this one".
One of the best books I've read so far! It was a soft read. I loved the main characters and so enjoyed the two teenagers who had a delightful love affair. You knew it couldn't last, and I liked the way Kellerman ended the affair. The only thing I did not like about it was the title. Before I started reading it I thought it was about rogue "cowboys"
or a drug cartel. Glad I worked through this impression.
I'm on her second Decker/Lazarus novel which is actually a prequil to the first one I read and this one is equally as good.
I love all Faye's Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus crime novels. This lady knows her stuff. If there is a false note in any of her books, I haven't found it. And each book seems better than the last. With her husband, son and daughter also active writers, the Kellermans may just be the literary 1st family of the 21st century.
Reviewer: Michael S
I love this series and buy them all, but this was not one of my favorites. As always the story is gripping and well told, however there is so much non plot detail of the yearnings and interactions of Gabe and Yasmin that they begin to read like filler.
Reviewer: Barbara C
As usual Faye Kellerman has written a novel with a great plotline that also follows the characters through the Decker-Lazarus novels.