Thursday, May 24, 2012

DeSilva's "Cliff Walk" Amazing Second Novel!

"A mystery that began with a single murder more than five months
ago now had tentacles that stretched from Newport's scenic Cliff
Walk to a bloody bedroom in the Chad Brown housing project,
from a Pascoag pig farm to a bullet riddled strip club in
Providence. It had taken the lives of an ex-navy SEAL, three
snuff film producers, a Brown University dean, a New Jersey
child porn aficionado, and a pedophile priest in Michigan. I
didn't give a shit about any of them, but it had also snuffed out
an uncertain number of children..."
Cliff Walk:
 A Mulligan Novel

By Bruce DeSilva

Rogue Island, Bruce DeSilva's first novel, won the Edgar and Macivity Awards, with good reason. Having gotten to know Bruce a little on line, when he wrote Cliff Walk, I'm fairly certain he was thinking, "You 'ain't' seen nothing yet..." In his second novel, DeSilva has shown us he's the writer to be watching, a new best-seller whose name will be on the lips of mystery thriller readers everywhere! Sure, I loved It!

DeSilva mentions several authors in this novel, including his wife, Poet Patricia Smith. But even if he hadn't mentioned him, I recognized his kindred spirit with Robert B. Parker. I haven't enjoyed the dialogue and quips DeSilva zings us with since the early books starring Parker's Spenser. If you know what I'm talking about, readers, be prepared to meet a new Spenser-investigative leading man--Liam Mulligan style! Mulligan captures us in this novel, keeping us fully entertained with smiles and laughter...

And we need it, because the topic covered is very important to all those who care about children--child pornography and abuse/murder...

I especially liked that Mulligan, along with other characters, was written to show his emotional response to the grim crime scenes to which he was called. In fact, by the end of this novel, readers will have fallen for Mulligan--and I'm sure many of us will want to comfort him as he laments being alone...LOL...

As a newspaper man, Mulligan tells us much about Rhode Island and this time is no exception...Did you know that prostitution had been legal in Rhode Island until recently? So when an arm of a child was found--you don't want to know where--it was natural for Mulligan and the police to look at those involved with the sex business.
Poor Mulligan had to investigate all the strip joints, and tell us about them of course. But the owner of these bars, who was also producing pornographic vids, swore he was not involved. And, surprisingly, Mulligan later finds out why he could cross him off the suspect list, at least for the murders that continued to result in body parts being found... But he did confirm that the governor had been receiving "donations" from the pornographer!

Mulligan continues to have a good working relationship with a local cop and their byplay adds much to the credibility of those activities in which Mulligan finds himself involved. And there is much in which he does touch upon, including religion as several were priests who were found to be involved in child pornography.

As we all know, child pornographers and pedophiles can be found everywhere, especially on the Internet. That makes solving a case much more complex and spread across states and borders. For readers, that makes for a page-turning thriller as we try to solve the case with Mulligan. I applaud DeSilva not only for taking on an important issue and handling it with sensitivity to the extent possible...but also for broadening Mulligan's character to include more of his personality through humorous as well as touching scenes. Let's hear it for a leading man we readers will love to follow--including moi!

And I knew I liked Bruce DeSilva even more when he closed with his comments about the signature move of the star of a TV show--which I refuse to watch because of that same "look!" LOL

This is a must-read from a new DeSilva "Favorite Author" Fan!


Bruce DeSilva worked as a journalist for 40 years before retiring to write crime novels full time. In April of 2011, he was awarded the Mystery Writers of America's prestigious Edgar Award in the best first novel category for "Rogue Island." In September 2011, he was awarded the Mystery Writers International's Macavity Award for best debut novel. The book was also a finalist for the Shamus, Barry and Anthony Awards.

The sequel, "Cliff Walk," was  published by Forge in May.

At the Associated Press, DeSilva served as the writing coach, responsible for training the wire service's reporters and editors worldwide. Previously, he directed an elite AP department devoted to investigative reporting and other special projects. Earlier in his career, he was an investigative reporter and an editor at The Hartford Courant and The Providence Journal.

Stories edited by DeSilva have won virtually every major journalism prize including the Polk Award (twice), the Livingston (twice), the ASNE, and the Batten Medal. He also edited two Pulitzer finalists and helped edit a Pulitzer winner.

He has worked as a consultant on writing and editing at more than 50 newspapers including The New York Times and The Dallas Morning News, and he has been a sought-after speaker at professional journalism gatherings including the National Writers Workshops and the Nieman Foundation. He has also been a speaker at crime writers conferences including Thrillerfest, Bouchercon, and the Mystery Writers of America.

His reviews of crime novels have appeared in The New York Times book review section and continue to be published occasionally by The Associated Press. He is currently an adjunct professor at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

He and his wife Patricia Smith, an award-winning poet, live in Howell, NJ, with their granddaughter Mikaila, a huge mutt named Rondo, and an enormous Bernese Mountain Dog named Brady.

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