A pharmaceutical mishap draws Rabbi Small into a murder investigation in this New York Times bestseller
New Age thinking has come to Barnard’s Crossing, Massachusetts. The recently elected president of Rabbi David Small’s synagogue is intent on using temple money to build a meditation retreat. The congregation is practicing yoga, buying crystals, and reciting chants. When a troubled young man returns to the town after spending time in a controversial Hasidic cult, the rabbi expects him to be another New Ager. But things take a grisly turn away from new-fangled mantras of peace and love when something terribly old fashioned happens: murder.
An elderly patient dies after being given the wrong medication by the local pharmacist, who coincidentally is also the Hasidic man’s father. When the dead man’s family suggests the mix-up was intentional, both the druggist and his son become suspects and it’s up to Rabbi Small to investigate by drawing on some Old Testament wisdom in a village of New Age fads.
“A jim-dandy tale.” —Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Kemelman has blended an endearing character with a devious plot to give us a spicy peek at mystery and the Talmudic ambience.” —The San Diego Union-Tribune
“Ingenious . . . Highly recommended.” —The New York Times on Thursday the Rabbi Walked Out
“A first-rate mystery.” —The New Yorker on Friday the Rabbi Slept Late Harry Kemelman (1908–1996) was best known for his popular rabbinical mystery series featuring the amateur sleuth Rabbi David Small. Kemelman wrote twelve novels in the series, the first of which, Friday the Rabbi Slept Late, won the Edgar Award for Best First Novel. This book was also adapted as an NBC made-for-TV movie, and the Rabbi Small Mysteries were the inspiration for the NBC television show Lanigan’s Rabbi. Kemelman’s novels garnered praise for their unique combination of mystery and Judaism, and with Rabbi Small, the author created a protagonist who played a part-time detective with wit and charm. Kemelman also wrote a series of short stories about Nicky Welt, a college professor who used logic to solve crimes, which were published in a collection entitled The Nine Mile Walk.
Aside from being an award-winning novelist, Kemelman, originally from Boston, was also an English professor.