Joseph's Reviews

The Charlestown Connection: A Novel by Tom McDonald (Oceanview Publishing, $25.95, 272 pages)

Tom McDonald’s The Charlestown Connection has a little Umberto Eco in it at times.   In the book, a recovering alcoholic and former college football star (before a career-ending injury), Dermot Sparhawk, goes on a chase to clarify conspicuous circumstances surrounding his grandfather Jeepster Hennessey’s death.

The tale is set in the projects of Boston, where virtually every character, including Jeepster and Dermot, possesses varying degrees of shadiness.   In fact, the resolution at the end, though not technically illegal, walks a fine line of legitimacy.

When the clue, “Oswego” surfaces, it leads Dermot on a circuitous and unlikely journey that eventually brings closure to Jeepster’s eventful life.   In the process, suspected IRA members try to discourage Dermot from continuing on his quest; the FBI becomes involved, though this, too, is not what it seems; former inmates come into…

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