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Publisher's Summary

It is May 1963, in Birmingham, Alabama. As Martin Luther King, Jr.’s civil rights demonstrations begin to fill the streets, prejudices awaken and tempers flare. Amid the violence and confusion, a deaf black girl is found raped and murdered. Veteran homicide detective Ben Wellman pursues the murderer through the throngs of protesters, the pool halls of the black district of Bearmatch, the white mansions of Mountain Brook, and, finally, even in his own department. As he did in Sacrificial Ground, Cook has created a novel of uncommon force and resonance.

©1989 Thomas H. Cook (P)1994 Recorded Books

What listeners say about Streets of Fire

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Close climate...tight story

well written with excellent description of the situation in Birmingham Alabama at the time of Martin Luther King. The festering protests and oppressive climate form a rich backdrop to a tightly evolved murder mystery.

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  • Ellen Fisher
  • 05-09-2016

One of my most cherished books.

What made the experience of listening to Streets of Fire the most enjoyable?

The story was utterly compelling, and the narrator superb.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Ben Wellman. Because of his unshakable integrity.

Which scene was your favorite?

The end -- when Ben steps off the curb and joins the forward rush of humanity.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

See above

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  • Calliope
  • 28-11-2014

Good book, great narration

I bought this audiobook mostly on the strength of the narrator -- I've heard many of his other performances and loved them all. He was equally great in this, but the book was not as focused as I would have liked. Good history - 1963 in Birmingham, Alabama - with lots of activity and lots of emotion, but it tended to get lost a little and didn't stay on course as much as I think it needed to in order to keep the tension and interest in a way that would have made it great. Good but not great is the best way I can think to describe it.

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