Irish grief implodes in 1963 Boston.
The Daley boys dislike their father Joe Senior’s ex-partner, Brendan Conroy, who’s moved in on their mother within a year of their father’s death on the job. Is there a reason Brendan let Joe walk first down an alley into an ambush? How come the perp has never been found? That’s just the beginning of the Daley troubles. Joe Jr., a cop like his dad, has so much gambling debt that he’s forced to become a bagman for Vinny “The Animal” Gargano. Ricky, an upscale burglar, has drawn the ire of racketeer Capobianco by heisting diamonds from a swell who’s under his protection. And Michael, a functionary in the Attorney General’s Eminent Domain Division, has antagonized his boss by insisting that Albert DeSalvo, who’s confessed to being the Strangler who throttled 13 women, is just a publicity-seeking nut case. Even when Ricky’s reporter girlfriend Amy is murdered, with all the earmarks of a Strangler killing even though DeSalvo’s been in lockup, the A.G. still swears he did it, prompting Michael to investigate matters further. Coming up: more dead cops, more battles among crooks and a Strangler-like murder on the other side of the country.
In between a slow start and a coda too cute, Landay (Mission Flats, 2003) shows a truly sizzling Boston.