Book Reviews




PAGE COUNT: 50 Pages/Paperback
YEAR/PUBLISHER:1992 Atria Books
Book Reviewer:
Joseph E. DeYoung, Jr.

The Nominee by Brian McGrory

"The Nominee" is an intricately contrived, perhaps too contrived, mystery novel about Jack Flynn, reporter and much more for the Boston Record. The work started off slowly, but quickly picked up the pace and held my attention to the end. I felt I had lost a friend when I finished.

Written by Brian McGrory, a columnist for the Boston Globe, this work is filled with a host of improbable events that spring up in virtually every chapter, usually something that makes me put down a book very quickly. But not this one, for it is McGrory's ability to tie each of these events together with a single red thread that makes the book hard to put down. His ability to turn a phrase or inject a bit of humor also makes this book worth reading.

More, even than the events and his writing skill, are the characters McGrory creates. Each a unique persona that the reader will come to love or hate, but always wants to know more about. The main character, Jack Flynn, is at once a serious newspaper reporter with incredible professional insight and a complete moron when it comes to his relationship with Elizabeth Riggs, his former lover and rival newspaper reporter. Hank Sweeny, retired Boston cop, is a sad lonely man with something to prove, about himself and about his son. I found myself hurting, loving, laughing, crying, and hoping with each and every one of them. I felt I knew them as if I was there with them in the story.

Set in Boston, Washington, DC, and Florida we follow the unlikely pair of Flynn and Sweeny who set out to solve a series of murders, while working through their own flawed relationships. Together they take the story through boring detective and investigative work to tense moments that had me flipping pages as quick as I could finish each one.


In the end, it is Jack Flynn and Hank Sweeny, Elizabeth Riggs and Vinny Mongillo, John Cutter and Paul Ellis who are all wrapped up nicely by that single red thread and pulled tight by McGrory's quirky writing style, his sense of humor, and the characters he creates, that take the reader through this rewarding novel.



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