Kevin D'Onofrio

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Kevin grew up in Ventura County, CA with a passion for writing. That passion for writing led to a degree in Journalism from CSU Sacramento, where he also served as Sports Editor of the campus newspaper The State Hornet.

From there, a career in journalism followed by a stint as a technical writer led Kevin to pursue his true love - fiction writing. The Harshest Reality is the third published work of fiction produced by Kevin.

He now lives in Southern California with his dog, Frank the Tank.

The Harshest Reality Cover

The Harshest Reality

BY Kevin D'Onofrio

A disturbed genius becomes obsessed with ridding the world of reality TV stars in D’Onofrio’s (Take Me Out at the Ballgame, 2015, etc.) latest thriller.

Jonathan Tyler Sullivan’s eidetic memory ultimately led to getting perfect SAT scores when he was 7 and obtaining a master’s degree from MIT when barely a teen. But the socially awkward boy was also bullied by peers. He dreams of someday having a job working with dolphins, but instead, his passionate nature leads him toward a hatred for reality television; its participants’ obnoxious antics represent all that’s wrong with society. The feds don’t immediately tie the murders of several reality TV stars together since their deaths look like accidents or suicides, but Special Agent Ryan Samuels works toward finding answers. The novel provides a fascinating look at a serial killer: Jonathan’s essentially the star of an intimate story that he himself narrates. The plot starts leisurely, beginning with Jonathan as a young boy in Brookline, Massachusetts. But D’Onofrio deftly limns his moral descent. Jonathan spends much of his time after graduating from MIT watching dolphins, funded by the sale of his patent for boosting a tablet’s performance. His moral compass starts to spin when he feels like people are devoting their attention to poorly scripted television instead of cetaceans, and he starts preparing to right the world’s wrongs by purchasing firearms and learning how to pick locks. Some of the murder victims aren’t remotely sympathetic, like Cassandra, a rich football wife who neglects her children in favor of shopping and partying. But at least one is compassionate—a fact unknown to Jonathan, who only sees her TV persona. Metaphors can be heavy-handed, like Jonathan’s frequent comparison of himself to a killer whale. But the straightforward prose is effectively unsettling; Jonathan frankly portrays a life that he believes is perfectly reasonable but is unhinged. A thoroughly eerie story of a murderer with the potential to rattle even the most seasoned readers.


Pub Date:

Publisher: Dog Ear Publisher

Review Posted Online: Aug. 24, 2015


Take Me Out At The Ballgame

Author Kevin D'Onofrio follows his debut effort "The Murderer's Smile" with this novella: a tale about love, vengeance, baseball, murder and the FBI's pursuit of a dangerous serial killer. When the baseball season begins tragically with a fan dying of a heart attack on Opening Day, it at first appears to be an unfortunate tragedy and nothing more. As more fans begin having heart attacks at ballgames, the media and public outcry becomes deafening, blaming the unhealthy food choices at the ballparks, claiming baseball is killing its fans. The heart attack victims are high-risk patients so the league simply responds by saying it encourages a healthy lifestyle and it reminds fans to be responsible when making choices. Eventually teams relent to the pressure. The heart attacks eventually stop, but the fan deaths continue. Fans will now have to think twice about singing during the traditional seventh inning stretch, especially the "I don't care if I ever get back" after reading this thriller.

The Murderer's Smile

As the top-rated news anchor in all of Dallas, Tony Michaels has his smiling facing on billboards all over the Dallas Metroplex which proclaim him to be "The Most Trusted Man in Texas." But when the dismembered bodies of his wife and son are found in his backyard, he is arrested and the media dub him "The Anchor of Death." Tony insists on his innocence, but the evidence is stacked heavily against him and the prosecution believes he has motive. Facing the death sentence and now haunted by disturbing nightmares, Tony receives an unusual visit and enlists the help of friend and private investigator Ryan Samuels. Now it is up to Samuels to find out anything the police missed in their investigation that can prove his friend's innocence and save him from the lethal injection.
Published: March 30, 2015
ISBN: 978-1478752974