Saturday, June 20, 2009

Lawrence Kaplan: HOUSE OF GHOSTS & a chance to win a signed copy

Lawrence Kaplan
Westfield Press
309 pages
ISBN: 978-0-9824117-0-4

Joe Henderson's life is none you would want to have. A retired cop, he was shot in the line of duty, which left him crippled. His staying home didn't do him any good either, as he started do drink and got very cynical. When his wife couldn't stand it any longer, she left - first to help their daughter settle in at university, then for a new job.

When his neighbor, Preston Swedge, is found dead, Joe is suspicious. Something seems off about the death of this anti-Semitic, grumpy man. When he finds a stack of old papers in Swedge's house, he finds proof that he might in fact not have been the anti-Semitic man he seemed to be. What he does find, actually implies that Joe's nieghbor was a Government official during the second World War and had proof that the Americans knew about Auschwitz and its purpose a long time before they actually freed the prisoners. But why did Preston Swedge die? And why did the Allies not drop bombs on Auschwitz when they first discovered it?

In his first novel, Lawrence Kaplan entwines historic facts with the fictitious world of a hard-boiled investigator who finds his place right next to Sam Spade or Philip Marlowe. Joe Henderson is a hard drinking, hard smoking, hard loving cynical, but that doesn’t make him not likeable.

This compelling read is not just for fans of hard-boiled mysteries, though. It contains also a nice bit of history and is well researched. Kaplan easily switches back and forth between 2000 and the 1930s without interrupting the reader’s flow. You can read right through and it just fits.

Be prepared to stay up late while reading this book full of twists and turns just because you want to know what happens next! And another good thing - this is not the only Joe Henderson book. There's a second in the making and Lawrence Kaplan is already researching a third!

About the Author
Lawrence Kaplan is a 1979 graduate of New York University School of Dentistry, runs a dental practice in New Jersey, and lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, with his wife and menagerie. House of Ghosts is his first novel.

And now some wonderful news:
Larry Kaplan is giving away a signed copy of his book, House of Ghosts, to one lucky tour visitor. Go to Larry Kaplan's book tour page, enter your name, e-mail address, and this PIN, 3529, for your chance to win. Entries from Secret Dreamworld will be accepted until 12:00 Noon (PT) tomorrow. No purchase is required to enter or to win. The winner (first name only) will be announced on Larry’s book tour page next week.


  1. Great review, Kathrin! This sounds like a very interesting read. I think I shall mosey on over to the contest and enter--thanks for letting us know about it!

  2. Great job reviewing the book - sounds like a thought-provoking read. I'll join Maria now & enter the giveaway! Thanks!

  3. Thanks, Maria and itsamystery!
    It is a great book and I can only recommend it :-)