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Run You Down by Julia Dahl
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Run You Down (2015)

by Julia Dahl

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Second in series after Invisible City. After the first excellent novel, Dahl manages to produce another well written and engaging mystery involving her reporter/investigator Rebekah, set in the NY Hasidic community. Alternating chapters by Rebekah and her mother, a sometimes questionable technique, was nicely managed by Dahl. Her writing skills suggest that novels to come should be worthwhile. ( )
  rwt42 | Sep 26, 2016 |
What I liked most about this book was the portrayal of Jewish Orthodox people living in the U.S. (mainly New York). I know next to nothing about this community even though I live near many of them in Brooklyn, NY, so I appreciated learning more about these individuals.

The mystery itself is fine but not gripping. The writing reflects the author's background as a reporter; there is little embellishment, which moves the story along but sometimes feels cold. Recommended for public libraries, especially in Brooklyn or any community where Jewish Orthodox people reside. ( )
  librarianarpita | Nov 4, 2015 |
Another winner from the award winning first novel author of INVISIBLE CITY. (See my review). After closing the final page of that book and immediately picked up RUN YOU DOWN. Rebekah is given a message from her mother whom she has never met...except as a very young infant. In her search for her mother, Aviva she enters into the world of "off the path" lives and struggles of former ultra-conservative Orthodox Jews. A young Orthodox Jewish man is convinced his wife was murdered and not a suicide. As Rebekah is drawn into the mystery she understands and gets closer to her mother. The first chapters in the book alternates between letters to Aviva to her abandoned daughter and Rebekah's search. Read both books in order. You are in for a real treat. ( )
  dorisannn | Nov 1, 2015 |
Second in the series featuring a daughter of an Orthodox Jewish mother and a minister father. Rebekah works as a reporter in NYC and, through contacts she has developed in the Orthodox community, is called in to investigate the death of a young mother.

This is a rare instance of the sequel besting the original. Great characters, a twisty plot, and the involvement of her own family make this a well-written, highly suspenseful read. ( )
  froxgirl | Aug 30, 2015 |
I didn’t think it would be possible for the second book in this series to live up to the first, which is a compelling personal story, a suspenseful mystery, and one of my favorite novels of 2014, but this new book by Julia Dahl is at least as gripping as her debut. At the end of the previous novel Rebekah learns that her long lost mother would like to talk, but when this one opens several months later Rebekah still hasn’t been able to get herself to give her mother a call. Aviva Kagan was a troubled teenager when she left her Hasidic Jewish life in Brooklyn, ran off with a non-Jewish college boy, gave birth to Rebekah, and then fled to parts unknown, leaving her fiancé and infant daughter behind.

Rebekah is working her dream job as a journalist, but coping with anxiety (long term) and depression (new) is affecting her reporting skills and threatening to derail the career progress she’s made. When she’s contacted by an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man who hopes she’ll look into why his wife’s suspicious death hasn’t been investigated so she can write an article to prod the police, Rebekah gets involved with the insular religious community her mother grew up in and finds herself investigating a group of white supremacists.

For the first two-thirds of the novel Rebekah’s mother recounts her life to explain her actions in chapters that alternate with Rebekah in the present day until the two plotlines begin to converge. I was equally drawn to the stories of both women, and it’s all written so realistically and set so convincingly in a timeline of real events that it’s easy to get swept up. Characters with varied levels of religious belief and disbelief are all portrayed with insight and sympathy, and are allowed shortcomings as well as strengths. It’s a disquieting but potent story and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series. ( )
  Jaylia3 | Jun 21, 2015 |
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This book is dedicated to my husband, Joel Bukiewicz--the bravest man I know.
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Florida was not as I imagined.
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