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Samaritan by Richard Price
Samaritan tells the story of Ray Mitchell, who went from being a scoundrel to being successful writing for television. Then he returned home to the projects in Dempsy, New Jersey to reconnect with his daughter, spread his wealth among his former community, and teach creative writing free of charge. When he's found in his apartment with his skull bashed in, he refuses to tell who did it to him. Uncovering his secret falls to the detective Nerese Ammons, a friend of Ray's from childhood. Novelist and screenwriter Richard Price tells the story of Ray as his past begins to unravel as well as the story of this blighted urban community. The Oregonian says of Samaritan, "All the stories, all the voices, come together somehow and tell another hard-luck story set in Dempsy, a city too real to really exist."