HIP SET: Book Review

I confess. Long before there was Netflix, I was a “binge reader.” 

One genre I especially followed was murder-mysteries, not the gory/porny stuff, but good police whodunits.  There was Jonathan Kellerman’s Alex Delaware, and Peter Decker and Rina Lazar created by Faye Kellerman were special favorites. Those murder detective stories set in LA with a Jewish theme were fun escape reading stories.

Multi-talented writer Michael Fertik’s “HIP SET” brought back fond memories. His book, published last year, is set in Tel Aviv, on some of “The Non-Stop City’s” ill-famed streets and infamous locations. 

When Kobi Sambinsky of Tel Aviv’s Asylum Unit wakes up Congolese refugee Oscar Orleans early on a Shabbat morning, Oscar knows something is seriously wrong. Overnight a young man from South Sudan was found murdered in an iconic Tel Aviv waterfront building. Oscar, a Hebrew-speaking liaison to the African refugee community living in Tel Aviv’s slum district, has helped local police over the years with translating languages and explanations of African culture. 

As the unlikely pair work to solve the first murder, Fertik incoperates current issues, not only of African immigration and South Sudan warring factions but Russian immigration, Israel’s “Russian mafia,” and Israeli resident status. All factor into the narrative along with police detective work and women’s status.

I am certain Fertik was pleased to see Faye Kellerman comment on his work, “Fast-paced with an original, exotic setting HIP SET is an unstoppable read from the first page to the last.”

After a long list of recent nonfiction books, “HIP SET” was a welcome change of pace. I will not give away the well-planted clues to the conclusion of the story. However, obviously, it’s been too long since I read a good murder-mystery, I shouted out loud at the end “How could I missed that!”

Title: Hipster  Publisher: Stirling Publishing

ISBN: 978-1-912818-08-2 144 pages

Price: Hardcover $15.99