This thriller debut from Brendan Matthews takes the reader back to the tense pre-WWII era, but does it fulfill its promise and potential?
It’s the eve of WWII. Francis Dempsey and his brother Michael are bound for New York on the luxury liner RMS Brittanic, having just made off with a bunch of IRA loot after an incident at a safe house that left three IRA members dead.
Travelling as a Scottish lord, Sir Angus MacFarquar, Francis is a silver-tongued schemer who seduces New York’s wealthy on sea and land. He reunites with his jazz-playing older brother Martin in New York.
Ireland catches up with the Dempseys’ in the new world, even though the world is about to change highlighted by the futuristic world fair captivating the city and the approaching Second World War. But you can never escape your past or your family, no matter how far you travel or how high in society you climb — especially when an IRA hitman with links to your dead father is on your tail.
This literary adventure doesn’t quite deliver on its thrilling premise. It lacks hardboiled thriller grit and literary flair but the hyped novel is nonetheless a solid debut from Brendan Matthews.
Author: Brendan Matthews
Publisher: Simon & Schuster