Inspired by a true case in Boston, Michael Fredrickson's Witness for the Dead is a powerful and realistic new novel that will be this year's outstanding legal thriller. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is breaking apart Boston's Italian Mafia. The once powerful mob a lead by Larry "The Rabbit" is now in shambles. And the FBI has just brought in Arthur Patch, a young Boston restaurateur whose establishment is well known for its authentic Sicilian cuisine. Arthur might have information that will bring down Larry on a charge of loansharking.
But Arthur wants to cut a deal with the Feds, and that deal does not involve betraying The Rabbit." Arthur knows who the FBI's leading informant is, and backed by his lawyer, Jimmy Morrissey, Arthur threatens to let this information become public unless he is given leniency. Morrissey, acting on his own, lets the story slip to the press, and the resulting publicity is blistering. Heads will roll within the FBI and the Boston underworld. And the snitch is on the run.
The most powerful mobster in the underworld, and brother to the Governor of Massachusetts, Butchy Crimmins has brought down many powerful men in the Boston underworld. For years, the acknowledged head of the Boston Irish mob has been given free reign by his friends in the Bureau for information against his Italian Mafia counterparts who control parts of the city. That free reign gave Butchy freedom to kill, extort, steal, and kidnap-a reign of terror that has been deliberately ignored by the FBI in its war with La Cosa Nostra.
Now Butchy is on the run with his girlfriend, Mavis Reiley with the FBI, the District Attorney, and the criminal underworld of Boston all on his trail. The only way to bring Butchy down is to get Mavis to reveal her whereabouts. If she falls for the trick, who will get there first? And who, if anyone, will survive the collision?
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Michael Fredrickson is the author of the critically acclaimed A Cinderella Affidavit. He is an attorney for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, in charge of prosecuting other attorneys for legal wrongdoing. He lives in Watertown, Massachusetts.From Publishers Weekly:
A fugitive Irish mobster, an Italian Mafia boss and a cash-strapped restaurateur are among the many crooked characters in this savvy legal thriller exposing Boston's corrupt underbelly. Fredrickson's follow-up to his stellar debut (The Cinderella Affidavit) begins when the FBI subpoenas restaurant owner Arthur Patch to testify against Italian gangster Larry the Rabbit on charges of loan sharking. The Mafia has made it clear that Arthur's testimony against Larry would probably be the last words he ever speaks, but luckily, Arthur has secret knowledge that enables him to bargain with the Feds. With the help of his lawyer, Jimmy Morrissey, Arthur cuts a deal he agrees to remain silent about the collaboration between fugitive Irish mob boss Tommy Crimmins and the FBI, and in return the subpoena is thrown out. Morrissey, a down-on-his-luck guy, is in legal trouble himself, but the reporter on his trail agrees to kill a story about financial misdoings if Morrissey leaks the information about Tommy's link to the FBI. A media frenzy results and to support their denial of any wrongdoing, the FBI posts a handsome reward for Tommy's capture, prompting Arthur, Morrissey and former federal prosecutor Danielle Gautreau to join forces as bounty hunters. A clever, suspenseful and funny pursuit ensues until the final showdown between the Feds, the mob and Tommy ends with a bang. This one is a polished thriller with a multilayered plot and vivid characters, the whole package a winner. Agent, Sam Pinkus. (June)Forecast: This thriller distinguishes itself from the competition with its comic touch and clean styling. Fredrickson is clearly on his way up, and advertising in national media and legal publications will help build his readership.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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