Night Shadows

Detective Louis Martelli, NYPD, Mystery/Thriller Series

Fiction - Mystery - Murder
177 Pages
Reviewed on 04/08/2014
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Theodore J. Cohen, PhD, holds three degrees in the physical sciences from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and has been an engineer and scientist for more than 45 years. He has been an investor for more than 50 years, and most recently has focused on investigating and reporting on corruption in US financial institutions and agencies of the US government. Night Shadows brings back NYPD Homicide Detective Louis Martelli, the hero he introduced in Death by Wall Street: Rampage of the Bulls, and who later reprised his role in House of Cards: Dead Men Tell No Tales and Lilith: Demon of the Night. From December 1961 through early March 1962, Dr. Cohen participated in the 16th Chilean Expedition to the Antarctic. The US Board of Geographic Names in October, 1964, named the geographical feature Cohen Islands, located at 63° 18' S. latitude, 57° 53' W. longitude in the Cape Legoupil area, Antarctica, in his honor. His Antarctic Murders Trilogy describes what happened following a robbery of the Banco Central de Chile in Talcahuano in May, 1960. Dr. Cohen's first novel, Full Circle: A Dream Denied, A Vision Fulfilled, is based on his life as a violinist. He also has authored more than 400 papers, columns, essays, and interviews for the popular, scientific, and technical literature.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Lee Ashford for Readers' Favorite

Night Shadows by Theodore J. Cohen, PhD, is a murder mystery right out of NYPD case files, or so it seems. Detective-Investigator Louis Martelli and his partner, Sean O’Keeffe, found themselves with an unexpected murder on their hands when Deputy Coroner Michael Antonetti’s assistant discovered a rare ancient coin under the tongue of the cadaver brought in as an apparent suicide. Launched into an investigation they hadn’t anticipated, the detectives soon found themselves investigating a related second murder, while trying to prevent a third one. Using resources available to the police IT person, the two built their case one slow piece at a time, following up on many false leads in the process. Would they be able to solve the case before another murder is committed? Would they finally be able to follow a legitimate lead? Would the murderer be apprehended?

Night Shadows is a fascinating and believable story about the consequences of poor decisions. Sometimes those consequences are not realized until much later in life. Dr. Cohen has crafted a brilliant tale demonstrating the possible results of choices made by a group of High School students, which finally come to fruition many years later. Details of the police investigation were remarkably credible, incorporating a number of high tech tools only recently available. Dr. Cohen has perfectly captured the essence of small town America, and the passion for athletic performance that goes beyond the rational. This story was an enthralling tale I just could not put down. This is one murder mystery I will assuredly recommend to anyone and everyone with an interest in the genre.

Paul Johnson

A wealthy Wall Street commodity futures trader is found dead of an apparent drug overdose but Deputy Coroner Michael Antonetti is suspicious. He tells Detective Louis Martelli he suspects the suicide may in fact be murder. A similar case is discovered involving a former friend of the Wall Street trader who played on the same high school football team twenty years before. Martelli is convinced he is dealing with someone bent on revenge when he learns teammates were part of a three-man squad known as The Flying Horsemen. Martelli also fears there will be a third victim. Could the killings have anything to do with the rape and suicide of one of the men's former high school classmates? Martelli and his partner Sean O'Keeffe systematically comb through a mystery derived from suspicious detail dealing with the apparent drug overdoses using information-based computer investigation techniques along with good old fashioned police instincts.

Theodore Jerome Cohen has put together an outstanding mystery. Night Shadows has a well written plot based on solid police procedure and technique. He has created good dialogue between the main characters, Martelli, O’Keeffe, and Dugan. The story unfolds at a quick pace that keeps reader interest. There is some strong language but not an overabundance. As a fan of good police detective fiction, I quickly found myself liking the detectives and their computer whiz technician comrade. Once I got involved in the story, it was hard to put down. Other fans of good detective mysteries will surely have the same problem. Well done.

Jack Magnus

Night Shadows is a police procedural set in New York City, written by Theodore Cohen. Detective Louis Martelli and his partner, Detective-Specialist Sean O'Keeffe are investigating the death of Trent Morrison, a commodity futures trader. Although it appears to be an accidental death caused by alcohol and heroin, the medical examiner has brought some irregularities to their attention. The heroin was injected into the right-handed man's right arm, and the tie-off for the injection was in the wrong position. As Martelli and O'Keeffe trace the man's activities on the night of his death, they learn of a mystery woman who was to have dined with Morrison, but never showed up at the restaurant. They also discover that one of Morrison's high school buddies died several years earlier of an overdose.

Theodore Cohen's police procedural, Night Shadows, is an impressive and enjoyable mystery that follows the investigative process from the medical examiner through to apprehending the suspect. On the way, there's plenty to learn as the two detectives follow leads that take them back to Morrison's high school and into the upper-class suburbs of Syracuse, New York. While they're afield, Missy Dugan, their computer specialist, goes into places Martelli would rather not know about to get them the information needed to track down the suspected killer. I enjoyed watching the three of them at work in what felt like a real-life investigation. The plot is believable, the outcome is not at all predictable, and Martelli, O'Keeffe and Dugan are complex, finely drawn characters, whose interactions make Night Shadows a lively and engrossing mystery.

Faridah Nassozi

Night Shadows: A Detective Louis Martelli, NYPD, Mystery/Thriller Detective by Theodore Cohen revolves around the events following the death of Wall Street commodity futures trader Trent Morrison. Detective Louis Martelli is called in when the coroner discovers some facts that are inconsistent with the assumed cause of death. Soon the case that started out as death due to drug overdose starts looking more and more like a homicide. Detective Martelli and his team catch a promising lead when they discover that their case might be related to another death that occurred two years ago. However, the team keeps hitting one dead end after another, but the more they keep digging the more likely it seems that the two cases are related and the killer is not yet finished.

Night Shadows is a thrilling tale about the intricate work that goes into solving a complex case when all the answers lie in the victim's past. Theodore Cohen pulled off an incredible story that at times leaves you with mixed feeling towards the characters as he takes you back several years in a search for answers. Some parts of the story are so saddening and emotionally draining you might need to have some tissues on hand while you read, but all this speaks of Cohen's incredible writing skills and his ability to connect with the reader at such a level and evoke a deep connection with the characters. Night Shadows is a definite page-turner that will give any fan of the detective/mystery/thriller genres a splendid reading experience.

Mamta Madhavan

A chilling murder mystery, Night Shadows (Detective Louis Martelli, NYPD, Mystery/Thriller Series) by Theodore Cohen will keep readers guessing, searching for clues and looking for answers to the very end. Trent Morrison is found dead in his townhouse, apparently of a drug overdose. But the Deputy Coroner Michael Antonetti, NYPD, is suspicious that it is a murder and he voices his fears to Detective Louis Martelli. He also discovers a similar case involving a former friend. He is now convinced that there will be a third victim as the other two men belonged to an elite three-men squad known as The Flying Horsemen. Who will be the third victim? Will Detective Martelli be able to find out and crack the mystery of the murders?

In a gripping story, the author has built up the suspense and intrigue of the theme very well. The plot and the investigation techniques are very sophisticated and the dialogues are crisp and effective. The story has a lot of movement and the characters are well defined and believable; they add to the effectiveness of the murder plot. The book also captures the everyday life of a detective and their investigation procedures. The credibility of the characters also works in favor of the book. The combination of revenge and mystery in the plot makes it an intriguing and fast paced novel.

This murder mystery is a good read and the unexpected happenings, twists, and turns in the story will excite readers to the last page.

Reviewed by: Russell D.

Night Shadows by Theodore Jerome Cohen is a contemporary crime mystery with twists and turns that quite honestly, this reviewer did not expect. The scenery of New York City that is painted throughout the book is much like other books of its type, but what makes this book so interesting is that the reader expects one thing to happen … BAM - another event occurs entirely different from what was expected. The presentation of the characters is unique in that this reviewer has never read any other books by this author, but the nuances found in what must be other writings with these same characters are explained in enough detail that there are no inside jokes that only those who have read all this author's books can laugh at. The characters are so real that they remind me of some television shows that after fifteen seasons they finally have believable characters – as Cohen has created credible characters right from the start.
I cannot remember a time in the past decade where I picked up a mystery thriller novel and was surprised, but this really surprised me. It is like finding an old friend has a secret side that he is just now willing to share with me - and I like the juicy-ness of that seedy side that has remained hidden for so long. Ted Cohen needs to enter Night Shadows into a contest; perhaps with the Mystery Writers of America. It is such an unusual portrayal of everyday detectives and coroners along with everyday Joes and Janes, yet there is something about each person, each building, each room, each street corner that isn't present in other tales about New York or any other city in my memory. I feel like I've known New York for so many years from personal visits, but also from television shows, movies, and other books by other authors - now I see a different New York, and I like it.
The storyline, plot, settings, characters, and the development of every literary device used in this novel show that Cohen is an expert craftsman who isn't afraid to take his readers on a journey toward mystery novel bliss that they will not ever want to return from.

Pacific Book Review

Reviewed by: Gary Sorkin, Pacific Book Review
http://pacificbookreview.com/

From the prolific keyboard of Theodore Jerome Cohen comes the latest of the Detective Louis Martelli series titled Night Shadows.

In this incredibly supposable story, NYPD Det. Martelli and his partner Sean O’Keeffe methodically detangle a simple doubt derived from a clue of a suspicious detail dealing with an apparent drug overdose, into an affluence of evidence using both sophisticated information-based computer investigation techniques coupled with old fashioned police instincts. Absolutely brilliantly thought out, the book takes on a life of its own as it exemplifies the minutia of details based on apparently exhaustive research Cohen puts into his writing.

Moreover, Theodore Jerome Cohen uses his crime-solving mystery genre of storytelling to bring to the public’s attention adversaries in society as the root cause for plausible extraordinary occurrences. In Night Shadows, the emerging trend in child abuse, notwithstanding the Internet’s explosive growth of social media, becomes the catalyst to logical anti-social situations – including murder.

Gripping from the first page, the case in Night Shadows develops with the books structural underpinnings and plot machinations so advanced that even the most savvy of mystery readers will “raise an eyebrow” to the skill used by Cohen.

The dramatic action really starts during the climax when Detective Louis Martelli races to the scene of a suspected murder in progress by putting his rotating red light on the dash and “the pedal to the metal” of his Crown Vic only to quickly slam on the breaks – stuck in NYC traffic. I must admit this is a great juxtaposition of time sequences, building up the urgency along with the challenges in the readers mind in a credible scenario; a tribute to the master storytelling techniques of Cohen’s writing skill.

Ideally suited for a block-buster movie adaptation, as many of Cohen’s novels are, this also can serve well as a companion book for a cross-country flight or a snowy evening’s read. Night Shadows will undoubtedly become one of the best books any reader can pick up and a challenge to put down. As I have read all of the previous books in the Louis Martelli series, Night Shadows stands on its own as a distinct literary work, yet easily assimilated into the mindset of previous episodes without any loss of newness and without a hint of tautology.

Available in electronic format only, there is no reason to wait to read what I guarantee you will love and find yourself praying your battery holds out until the book is finished. Be sure to sit close to an electrical outlet just in case.

Reader Views

Reviewed by: Richard R. Blake, Reader Views

In “Night Shadows,” Detective Louis Martelli, NYPD, Detective Sean O’Keeffe, and IT Specialist Missy Dugan leave no stone unturned in their determination to uncover the identity of a serial killer following the deaths of two of a trio of high school football heroes known as The Flying Horsemen. It will come as no surprise to readers that this novel was inspired by recent newspaper headlines revealing incidents of rape, attempted rape, sexual assault, and violent abuse, all long overlooked by the Church, educational institutions, and the military. These reports add to the banner headlines and exposures of the exploits of celebrities in the sports and entertainment industries.

Bestselling author Theodore Cohen uses the medium of fiction to raise awareness of the problems of teen rape and sexual abuse in the United States and of the devastating long-term impact of the emotional trauma, shame, intimidation, and social ostracism experienced by victims of rape and their families.

Clandestine meetings, a mysterious veiled woman, staged suicides, and an unknown motive keep the reader matching wits with Martelli and his team as the clues mount right up to the final dramatic conclusion. Stimulating dialog, a complex plot, and strong character development that reveal dedication, compassion, and loyalty by all members of the NYPD team combine to draw the reader into this story. I have read several of Cohen’s novels. His writing just keeps getting better.

Cohen skillfully combines a unique creative imagination with a keen sense of investigative reporting, knowledge of police procedures, and an intuitive understanding of human nature in his book “Night Shadows.” This is another Cohen winner!

Theodore Prime

"Night Shadows," displays Cohen as a rivetingly dark genius. By highlighting controversial issues such as the sexual misconduct and exploitation of women and girls, readers can dually identify and realize the harsh realities of topics society disregards. Although written as fiction, this story holds many undeniable truths brought to life through strong dialog, great character building, and humor that allows Cohen to interject his unique personal touch and flair. I found this piece very enjoyable and experienced a roller coaster of emotions as every twist unfolded. I highly recommend this book for those who appreciate a thrilling drama that unravels under realistic circumstances and means. May justice save victims and find its defiers.

Hollywood Book Reviews

Night Shadows by Theodore Jerome Cohen is a contemporary crime mystery with twists and turns that quite honestly, this reviewer did not expect. The scenery of New York City that is painted throughout the book is much like other books of its type, but what makes this book so interesting is that the reader expects one thing to happen … BAM - another event occurs entirely different from what was expected. The presentation of the characters is unique in that this reviewer has never read any other books by this author, but the nuances found in what must be other writings with these same characters are explained in enough detail that there are no inside jokes that only those who have read all this author's books can laugh at. The characters are so real that they remind me of some television shows that after fifteen seasons they finally have believable characters – as Cohen has created credible characters right from the start.

I cannot remember a time in the past decade where I picked up a mystery thriller novel and was surprised, but this really surprised me. It is like finding an old friend has a secret side that he is just now willing to share with me - and I like the juicy-ness of that seedy side that has remained hidden for so long. Ted Cohen needs to enter Night Shadows into a contest; perhaps with the Mystery Writers of America. It is such an unusual portrayal of everyday detectives and coroners along with everyday Joes and Janes, yet there is something about each person, each building, each room, each street corner that isn't present in other tales about New York or any other city in my memory. I feel like I've known New York for so many years from personal visits, but also from television shows, movies, and other books by other authors - now I see a different New York, and I like it.

The storyline, plot, settings, characters, and the development of every literary device used in this novel show that Cohen is an expert craftsman who isn't afraid to take his readers on a journey toward mystery novel bliss that they will not ever want to return from.