Morrow, May 2004, 24.95
In Philadelphia, lawyer Victor Carl visits his dying father residing at the Temple University Hospital. His dad may be near death and seems to only tell melancholy tales from his youth, but has enough of his faculties to know that his son's cable is out and the Sixers are on TV.
Meanwhile pathetic insignificant wannabe thug Joey “Cheaps” Parma wants to retain Victor involving the murder of a lawyer Tommy Greeley twenty years ago. Only Victor would agree to assist Joey Cheaps, who not only never pays on time, is assumed guilty even by his attorney, and admits to his lawyer that he was one of the killers. However, not long afterward, the throat slashed corpse of Joey Cheaps is found near the waterfront. Though he knows he will not get paid and realizes he should mind his business, Victor feels a certain obligation to his dead client and begins making inquiries into what happened two decades ago and why suddenly did that homicide resurface into a new murder.
Though the conspiratorial ending and the lack of legalese makes the tale more a private investigator novel, fans will enjoy touring Philadelphia on Victor Carl's days off. The story line is fast-paced, punctuated by Victor's sarcasm, much of which is self-effacing. His relationship with his dad adds a humanizing sidebar. Readers will enjoy trekking the town with Victor as he does what he believes is right even for a dead beat loser like Cheaps.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner