Friday, January 15, 2010
Book Review: Among Thieves by David Hosp
Inspired by the true story of the biggest art theft in the twentieth century, bestselling author David Hosp returns with his latest blockbuster thriller featuring attorney Scott Finn.
In the early morning hours of March 18, 1990 two men dressed as police officers entered Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, tied up the guards, and escaped with 500 million dollars' worth of paintings. The heist provoked a massive search for both the thieves and the lost masterpieces. But the paintings never resurfaced and the mystery remained unsolved. Now, almost twenty years later, the case threatens to break wide open.
When attorney Scott Finn agrees to help an old friend from Southie, Devon Malley, he has no idea of the trouble he is bringing upon himself. Members of Boston's criminal underworld start turning up dead, and the M.O. of the attacks suggests the involvement of someone trained by the IRA. But when Finn learns of Malley's role in the heist, he's quickly drawn into the crossfire, and into the renewed hunt for the missing artwork. . . A hunt that may cost Finn and his colleagues their lives.
I've been fascinated with the theft at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, so I was intrigued by the storyline of David Hosp's latest novel. Fortunately, Among Thieves did not disappoint!
Location is as much a character in the novel as the people; David Hosp captures the atmosphere of Boston well from Gardner Museum in the Fenway area to South Boston and the streets of Boston.
While attorney Scott Finn is a convincing and likable lead character, I was drawn in by Finn's colleagues Lissa Krantz and former detective Kozlowski. Lissa Krantz is a strong independent attorney from a privileged background who cares fiercely about her small circle. Tough and burly, Kozlowski ("Koz") built a reputation for integrity and competence in the Boston Police Department but hadn't gotten along with his superiors; after retiring from the police, Koz built a niche as the investigator of their group. When Finn, Koz, and Lissa take on Malley's case in the course of their practice, they approach his case with professional distance. But the three grow increasingly invested and Malley becomes more than a client as the story evolves.
Among Thieves is a satisfying and compelling escape - an art theft mystery and a legal thriller to enjoy.
ISBN-10: 0446580155; $24.99 - hardcover
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (January 11, 2010), 384 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher.
About the Author, courtesy of Amazon:
In addition to being a novelist, David Hosp is a lawyer and a partner in the Trial Department at Goodwin Procter LLP, one of Boston's oldest and largest law firms. He was born in New York and grew up primarily in Manhattan and Rye, New York. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and of The George Washington University Law School. During college, he also studied at the London School of Economics.
After graduating from Law School, Mr. Hosp returned to New York, where he practiced law at a large Wall Street law firm before moving to Boston and beginning his practice with Goodwin Procter. He spends a significant portion of his legal career working pro bono with organizations like The Boston Public Library and The New England Innocence Project. His third book, Innocence, was inspired by his representation of a man wrongly convicted of the attempted murder of a Boston police officer in 1997, who was exonerated through DNA evidence in 2004.
Hosp's first novel, Dark Harbor, was a Barry Award nominee for Best First Novel and a Book Sense Pick of the Month. Hosp's third novel, Innocence, was named one of 2009's best summer reads by The Daily Telegraph.
Hosp lives south of Boston with his wife and two children.
Thank you so much to Miriam and Hatchette Book Group for this review opportunity!