Obedience is probably my favorite of the first ten books of the Brandstetter series. In addition to the usual cast of interesting and well drawn characters, the completely apposite and convincing evocation of the southern California terrain and the well designed plot which keeps the reader guessing, the fact that Brandstetter is aging has added an additional element of absorbing interest for me. In Early Graves and this book Brandstetter has acted foolishly, indeed, suicidally. At the end of this book he was made aware that he might be deliberately trying to end his life to avoid facing the question of what he will do with himself when he retires (besides build some book cases and hang some paintings...). I hope that in the last two volumes of the series Brandstetter will completely realize how lucky he really is and will act to preserve his blessed life, even if his sense of duty and obligation forces him to agree to further investigations.