The Kellerman father-son team produces a new crime thriller

A Measure of Darkness is the latest from the Kellerman father-son team.

The Kellerman family is a writing phenomenon. Papa Jonathan has written 33 thrillers in his Alex Delaware series as well as at least 14 other novels and five nonfiction books. Mama Faye is the author of 25 Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus mysteries plus eight other novels. Their son, Jesse, has written a total of 12 novels, four of them collaborations with his father. The most recent production of the Kellerman father-son team is A Measure of Darkness, the second novel featuring Oakland Coroner’s Deputy Clay Edison.


A Measure of Darkness (Clay Edison #2) by Jonathan Kellerman and Jesse Kellerman (2018) 352 pages

@@@@ (4 out of 5)


A former beat cop, Edison can’t seem to reconcile himself to the fact that the Coroner’s Office doesn’t employ detectives. He has developed the habit of pursuing investigations far beyond the call of duty and often against orders. In A Measure of Darkness, he sticks so closely to the detective leading a murder investigation that she takes to calling him “Barnacle.” A Berkeley cop Edison once knew gave him that nickname. Somehow, it seems to have stuck. (Pun intended.)

The latest from the Kellerman father-son team

This latest product of the Kellerman father-son team involves the investigations into the death of four bodies that turn up after a violent confrontation at a late-night West Oakland party. Shooting began when three young neighborhood men approached a large group of mostly white men and women to ask that they turn down the music. A white woman had recently bought the old property and renovated it. As Edison notes after reaching the scene, “The problem was gentrification and a shortage of affordable housing, when you started kicking people out of a neighborhood that had been theirs for decades.” Clearly, Edison is politically aware. He seems well suited for the Berkeley-Oakland area.

A star basketball player, now a coroner’s deputy

By the way, Edison was a star basketball player at UC Berkeley. In A Measure of Darkness, he demonstrates how he managed to do so well even though he is a little short at 6’3″ for a top college basketball player: in a competition with his brother, he sinks 47 straight shots from the foul line. If you don’t think that’s impressive, just try it sometime.

For additional reading

If you enjoy mysteries and thrillers in general and not just those from the Kellerman father-son team, you’ll find a lifetime of good reading on my posts:

For an abundance of great mystery stories, go to Top 20 suspenseful detective novels (plus 200 more). And if you’re looking for exciting historical novels, check out Top 10 historical mysteries and thrillers reviewed here (plus 100 others).

This is one of the many Good books by Berkeley authors reviewed on this site.

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