The Third Side Of Murder
by Joe LeValley
BookPress Publishing

"The sound was thunderous, amplified by the bare concrete surfaces. Tony screamed in horror and shock as he saw Angelica fall back, her torso spattered in blood."

This is the third in a series of novels featuring Tony, a young reporter from a small town in Iowa, who seems destined to get himself and those around him in particularly dangerous scrapes of one sort or another. Between the pages of this potboiler, he manages to annoy a Mafia kingpin in Italy, tussle with a potential serial killer in New York, and learn perhaps more than he wanted to know about a beautiful but mysterious woman for whom he's fallen head-over-heels.

It all begins on the Amalfi coast when Tony and his family learn that his young cousin has been killed. Initially thought to be an accidental death, Tony's investigations lead him to believe that she may have been murdered. Soon he's on the trail of a man who was spotted near the deceased just before her death. It turns out that the fellow he's tracking has Mafia connections in both Italy and The Big Apple. However, Tony won't be deterred from finding the truth. His continued pursuit of one exceptionally bad dude lands him and his best friend in the middle of mayhem and murder.

Author Levalley has a firm grasp of his protagonist and supporting characters. He does a first-rate job of making them credible and memorable. His prose is tight, unpretentious, and easy to traverse. Levalley's dialogue reflects the way people actually talk and is used more for dramatic impact than plot exposition. It's easy to get caught up in Tony's plight, and one finds oneself turning the pages faster and faster to see what's coming next. Like the best of storytellers, the author has saved an intriguing surprise for the end. Chances are, it's one that readers won't see coming.

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