Picking up where the first novel in the series left off, Harry finds himself greeting 1958 with a regimen of exercise, morning vegetable juices and a will to stay alive. The Mafia has ordered a hit on him, and though he surrounds himself with a superb security team, precautions are always necessary. Harry, who’s involved in the adult-film business and operates theaters in California, walks a delicate balance between upsetting organized crime and local authorities. Nevertheless, with his trusty friend Dante by his side, Harry manages to succeed in his business interests. As outside dangers and Harry’s interests shift, though, he embarks on a journey that takes him to such disparate locations as a jail in Canada and an upscale men’s club in Australia; at 800-plus pages, the story has no problem putting Harry in a variety of hostile situations. However, as his business interests succeed, readers will be wondering what sort of mobster may come after him—or the people he cares about—next. Dialogue is often too lengthy or simply indicative of the obvious (“I like the idea, let’s do it!”), and the sheer enormity of the novel can take its toll. Elsewhere, stale periods, such as a largely uneventful trip to Europe, diminish the more intriguing events, including Harry’s incarceration. Nevertheless, readers intrigued by one man’s wading through the seedy and the semi-legal will find a lot to hold on to.
Lengthy and dotted with suspense, a topsy-turvy story with moments of excitement for patient readers.