All He Saw Was The Girl by Peter Leonard
Published by The Story Plant
At the request of The Story Plant, an ARC digital version was provided, at no cost to me, for my honest opinion.
Synopsis (from publisher):
McCabe and Chip, two American exchange students, are about to become embroiled with a violent street gang, a beautiful Italian girl, and a flawed kidnapping plan.
Sharon Vanelli’s affair with Joey Palermo, a Mafia enforcer, is about to be discovered by her husband, Ray, a secret service agent.
Brilliantly plotted and shot through with wry humor, ALL HE SAW WAS THE GIRL sees these two narratives collide in the backstreets of Italy’s oldest city.
My Thoughts and opinion: I was first introduced to this author when I read, Voices of the Dead, which I thoroughly enjoyed due to his writing style, his character development and descriptive settings, however, I am always a bit skeptical when I start to read a follow up novel. Will it be as good? Have I set my expectations too high and compare it to the first book?
All He Saw Was The Girl, just like Voices of the Dead, within the first few pages the book pulled me in with the introduction of a few of the characters that the author brought to life. Chip and McCabe, 2 students studying in Italy. Then Sharon, a lonesome wife from Detroit, married to a secret service agent, is injected into the story line. Characters, so different and on different ends of the spectrum, had this reader wondering what is their connection? The suspense starts and builds, like a ticking time bomb with one kidnapping that has gone bad, and continues with the tumultuous “mob” related cat and mouse chase of another kidnapping through the streets of Italy.
What I like about Peter Leonard’s books is that he creates the cast of characters, with the reader not knowing the connection, and in a very fluid manner, interweaves them all into an intricate plot. Another aspect of his writing that I enjoy is that he alternates chapters with different characters and leaves the reader with mini cliff hangers that it’s a “one more chapter” read to find out what happens and I found that I had read many more chapters than one. The detailed descriptions of Italy were vivid, and for me, factual as I had seen and visited many of the locales that he used as his settings. The action fast paced, with twists and turns of suspense and a bit of dry humor thrown in.
Did All He Saw Was The Girl meet my expectations, yes! It was what I call “a transport read”, where I was so engrossed into the story that I was unaware of what was going on around me. A page turner!! Would I recommend it, absolutely!!! Only one problem now, waiting for his next novel!!