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Blonde Faith    by Walter Mosley order for
Blonde Faith
by Walter Mosley
Order:  USA  Can
Little, Brown & Co., 2007 (2007)
Hardcover, CD

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* * *   Reviewed by Lisa Respers France

Walter Mosley makes me mad. He is such a tremendous writer that I literally get irritated when I finish one of his Easy Rawlins novels, because I so desperately want the story to go on and on. Easy and I go way back, and hanging out with him feels like you are sitting at his knee, soaking up all the wisdom, experiences and pain that he has gathered throughout the years. So when I turn that final page, I want to call him back because it's far too soon and I know there is more to learn.

Blonde Faith, the tenth book in the series, finds Easy nursing his broken heart and trying to survive a crushing loneliness as he lives his life without the woman he has pushed away. Now a full fledged, licensed detective, he makes his living finding runaways and solving any other case that comes his way. The mystery this time strikes close to home (literally) when Vietnam vet and government trained killer, Christmas Black, drops his daughter off at Easy's house and disappears.

Easy's search for Black puts him on a collision course with drug dealers, murderers, and a beautiful blonde woman named Faith Laneer, who may have gotten herself mixed up in a situation that could endanger not only her life, but that of those Easy dearly loves.
Christmas Black isn't the only one missing. Raymond 'Mouse' Alexander, Easy's closest friend and the most dangerous man ever to walk the streets of Los Angeles, is also nowhere to be found and the main suspect in the murder of the father of twelve mostly rambunctious children. Urged by Mouse's wife, Etta Mae, Easy sets out to also find his friend and help clear his name.

As has become his signature, Mosley's Easy is as knowledgeable about politics, race relations and human nature as he is about the characters who frequent the after hours joints and diners in his Los Angeles community. In this story set in the late 1960s, Easy is free to comment on everything from the Vietnam war to the overt racism that dogs him at every turn. He is also the ultimate commentator on his adopted city. 'Nobody looks at faces in Los Angeles,' he says. 'In L.A. people are too busy making hay because the sun never seems to go down.'

This latest installment in the Easy Rawlins mysteries is one of Mosley's best ever. He perfectly catches the feel of the landscape of Vietnam era America and his detail takes the reader through the side streets and back alleys of Los Angeles, where criminals are as bad as their weapons and friends are as faithful as their word. The ending is sure to stir controversy and leave Easy Rawlins fans shocked and ready to debate what it all means. But that's part of the genius that is Walter Mosley. He gives you just enough to leave you satisfied and yet craving for more. Easy come, easy go.

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