LADY GOLD by Angela Amato


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One of these writers spent nine high-wire years with the NYPD, and does it ever show. The story’s too long, and occasionally repetitive, but first-novelist Amato, a former gold shield detective (hence the title), and Sharkey, an investigative reporter (Bedlam, 1994, etc.), have teamed up to make this cop novel seem as real as any Smith & Wesson. At the outset, Eugene Rossi, a CI (Confidential Informant), is in police custody. Detective Gerry Conte gets assigned to help baby-sit him and to help wring him dry of all pertinent information. Rossi (“He’s just a young punk”) wouldn’t mean much to the NYPD if he weren’t nephew to Tony Rossi, a Mafia underboss. But Uncle Tony wouldn’t mean much, either, if he weren’t a potential link to “Seashore Sally” Messina. It’s Messina the NYPD wants to put away forever, partially because he’s a murdering crook and deserves such a fate, but mostly because he’s equally high on the FBI’s wish list. Naturally, both law enforcement organizations yearn to be the first to make a viable case against the slippery Messina. (And by doing so rake in a bonanza of public relations rewards.) Meantime, Gerry finds herself drawn—unwillingly—to Eugene. He’s arrogant, ignorant, a fifth grade dropout, and yet there’s some charm to him, a weird kind of innocence that Gerry finds hard to resist. In addition, her sense of fair play is outraged by what she considers shameless double-dealing on the part of the NYPD, with clueless Eugene as the patsy. While the NYPD and the FBI plot and counterplot to trap Messina, Gerry’s caught in the middle. She wriggles free, battles colleagues who are also back- stabbers, outfaces the Internal Affairs Bureau, and eventually scores a sweet if offbeat victory. Authenticity galore. Plus Gerry, who is as appealing as she is convincing.(Author tour)

Pub Date: Aug. 3rd, 1998
ISBN: 0-312-18541-3
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Dunne/St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 1998


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