Wednesday, June 10, 2015

F Train: A Brooklyn Crimes Novel by Richard Hilary Weber

F Train: A Brooklyn Crimes Novel by Richard Hilary Weber

Beneath Brooklyn's wintry streets, seven people are dead, slumped in their seats on an F train. Fast thinking and good fortune prevent the subway car doors from opening, spilling poisonous gas into the station. It's not long before a frightened metropolis of eight million demands answers: If this was an act of terror, where will these cruel killers strike next?The blurb:

NYPD detective Flo Ott looks closely at the victims. Each of their stories leads to another, one more colorful and complex than the last. A few of these quintessential New Yorkers catch Flo's attention: a mysterious off-duty FBI agent and the beautiful woman next to him, who may have been his lover. Then there's a Russian mobster with more than his fair share of enemies.

As Flo battles false leads, conflicting witnesses, and meddling politicians, her investigation delves into the dark side of the city that never sleeps. Flo becomes convinced that this wasn't a random act of violence, and she fears something much worse may be rumbling down the tracks.

I confess that one reason why I requested and particularly enjoyed the F train is my own familiarity with the book's setting.  Not only do I usually take the F train to get to Manhattan but I pass Farrell's and use the 15th Street/Prospect Park stop.  

The novel begins with a horrible crime on the F train and it's a retired FBI agent that keeps the loss of life from spreading.  As NYPD detective Flo Ott learns more about the victims, digs beyond the apparent relationships to find a web of relationships.  Possible extramarital affairs, Chinese gangs, Eastern European mafia, corrupt cops, and terrorists - Ott's investigation takes her to New York's diverse neighborhoods and it's uncertain whether she'll survive long enough to expose the perpetrators of the crime.

I enjoyed F Train and Weber's characterization of the neighborhoods of NY. Not surprisingly, much of the action occurs outside of Manhattan, giving the reader a glimpse into the gentrifying streets of Brooklyn.  NYPD Homicide Detective Florence Ott (Flo Ott) is a sympathetic and gifted detective.  So, if you're looking for a very NY mystery, pick up the F Train.  

About the Author:
Richard Hilary Weber, a native of Brooklyn - Park Slope born and bred - and a Columbia University graduate, has taught at the universities of Stockholm and Copenhagen, and has been a scriptwriter for French and Swedish filmmakers. He lives in Provence, France.  In 2015-2016, he has plays being produced in London and NY.  F Train is his second novel for Alibi, following his thriller In Flames.  His next Flo Ott crime novel is Fanatics.  Learn more about him and his writing at

1 comment:

  1. Though I'm not a fan of contemporary fiction, your description of this novel, Gaby, has piqued my interest.