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THE GATE HOUSE by Nelson DeMille


by Nelson DeMille

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-446-53342-3
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

More good-natured tough-guy fiction from regular-as-clockwork novelist DeMille (Wild Fire, 2006, etc.).

When readers left lawyer and freelance gumshoe John Sutter at the end of The Gold Coast (1990), he was a most unhappy man: His wife had been, well, dallying with the Mafia don who had hired him to sort out his taxes, something had gone amiss in the relationship and said wife had filled said don with lead. In the intervening years, it seems, Sutter has sailed around the world with an eye to finding paradise and staying far away from the Long Island shore, winding up in London advising British barristers that “screwing the Internal Revenue Service was an American tradition.” Post 9/11, some thought of Americanness has drawn him back, and, this being a postmodern era, he has returned to living on the Gold Coast in the estate of his ex, the ever-luscious Susan Stanhope Sutter, who somehow has escaped the justice that would be meted out to us poor folk and instead is having her nails done at liberty. But then life gets complicated, as it does: The don’s son and heir, a toughie named Anthony Bellarosa, insinuates himself into Sutter’s life to get at Susan, who, meanwhile, has been visiting Sutter in the gate house at all hours and in all states of dress and undress. The characters are just shy of stock. It’s not just that they have more money, but that they really do live like the characters in The Great Gatsby, save here with more guns and considerably more intricate plots involving one another.

The rich are different from you and me, DeMille instructs in this lightweight entertainment, where nearly every element can be seen coming from a long way off.