The Devil is in the Details by B O’Brien

devil1

two-stars
 

This story has intrigue written all over it; the prodigal daughter of an Italian mafioso and a beat cop who’s taken the law into his own hands. Unfortunately, true to the title, O’Brien is relentless with the detail, to the detriment of the story’s flow.
 
The style of writing in The Devil is in the Details reads more like a comprehensive crime report than a novel: tedious and overly descriptive.
Van Cortland Park was huge, 1,146 acres, and had old railroad lines, hiking trails, a golf course, marshes, and a pond where Green could easily take refuge. The park was ancient, with overpasses used long ago but now hidden by trees and other foliage and with tunnels dug by the homeless who were looking to create a home where they would be sheltered from the elements and left alone by the prying eyes of people in the community. It was truly a place where someone could disappear.
Each character’s attributes and life history is narrated to the nth degree before any interaction takes place, rather than letting them naturally develop as the story progresses.
 
Another negative is that the scenes are peppered with lengthy inner monologues or flashbacks that derail the reader from the story line.
 
All of the above points are infuriating, especially since the quality of writing is actually extremely good.
Daniela had found herself looking at everything around her from a different vantage point. A sleeping viper had been lying dormant in a world filled with unsuspecting targets. The anticipation of the kill rushed through her veins as she welcomed the return of her old friend, her predatory alter ego. 
In the end however I simply couldn’t persevere to reach the story’s conclusion, only making it to chapter 7 out of 12 (57%) before giving up.
 
The Devil is in the Details Book Cover The Devil is in the Details
B O'Brien
Crime Fiction
Self-published
November, 2016
142

 

Daniela had an unconventional upbringing. As she grew up in New York City, she would often shadow her father during his work as a consigliere and mediator between different factions of the New York City Mafia. She quickly learned how to talk to volatile people and recognize danger.

When Daniela’s father is arrested while she is away at school, and an associate is soon found murdered, he makes her promise that she won’t get caught up in the lifestyle. He wants Daniela as far away from the crime and vice of New York City as possible.

Daniela keeps the promise for ten years. She marries a stable man and has two beautiful children. She resigns herself to a life in the suburbs as a stay-at-home mom, but she can’t help but miss the excitement of her former life.

When Daniela’s best friend’s husband begins acting suspiciously, Daniela recognizes danger once again. Daniela is intent on exposing the truth behind the man. She hopes it will give her leverage against the district attorney supervising her father’s imprisonment. Her investigation will take her back to the world her father desperately wanted to protect her from.

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