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A Great Day For Dying Mass Market Paperback – March 1, 2002

5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

For a third-time charm, Harrington moves from Ireland to New York for another Danny O'Flaherty mystery (following The Death of Cousin Rose and The Second Sorrowful Mystery), adding bits of Irish folklore and ancient history and demystifying current Irish politics in the process. And what better time for an Irish mystery than St. Patrick's Day, with the victim none other than the parade's grand marshall, Fintan Conway? An iconoclastic columnist for the New York Voice, Conway has made plenty of enemies over the years with contrary positions. As grand marshall, he has managed to insult every group imaginable, from the Gay Irish & Lesbian Alliance and abortion rights advocates to IRA "thugs" and Loyalist paramilitary "scum." Danny and his Irish girlfriend, Fidelma Muldoon, who are near witnesses to Conway's collapse as the parade moves by, are later shocked to learn that a friend of theirs from Ireland, Brendan Grady, has been charged with the killing. Although Brady rejects their offer of help and won't explain why, Fidelma insists that Danny step in to do what he can. An inner city schoolteacher, Danny manages to squeeze enough time from his daily routine to do a little research into Conway's past and poke his nose into the police investigation. Despite a weak plot and little suspense, the congenial characters and Irish theme, coupled with a release pegged close to St. Patrick's Day, may give the book a boost. (Feb.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Teacher/sleuth Danny O'Flaherty (The Death of Cousin Rose), now back at his job in New York City, and illegal immigrant/ girlfriend Fidelma witness the murder of opinionated Irish American journalist Fintan Conway. Police arrest their secretive Irish friend Brendan for the murder, so Danny investigates. Suspects include the Conways' estranged gay son, a "dork brain" Celtic-rock musician, an "other" woman made rich by Conway's will, numerous Irish political extremists, and perhaps the police themselves. Harrington's prose may be overly methodical and unconvincing at times, but series fans should appreciate the plot. For larger collections.
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Worldwide Library (March 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0373264135
  • ISBN-13: 978-0373264131
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 4.2 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,880,041 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A first-rate novel here, from all angles. The mystery story twists and turns engagingly. This time Danny O'Flaherty is back in New York, and it's not in wannabe hip circles downtown but far uptown above 200th Street where the work is tough and the people live in fear of the Immigration and Naturalization Service. Harrington moves with authority from the complications of a Dominican neighborhood to the internecine strife of the Irish community. And along the way he offers incisive and often funny characters - Detective Washington, Mr. Zhang, surly Ian Masters, and above all, the opinionated Fintan Conway who, even dead, is larger than life. These creations linger in the mind long after the story is over. The climax is a fitting mix of resolution and tragedy, with a promise of romance to come. Highly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover
Mystery connoisseurs who have not discovered Jonathan Harrington's Danny O'Flaherty series will be delighted to do so. O'Flaherty--New York City Irish--after the death of his father, visits Ireland to research his roots. Ultimately, this protag finds himself investigating two seemingly unplumbable mysteries in, The Death of Cousin Rose and the Second Sorrowful Mystery. Harrington's latest mystery novel, A Great Day for Dying, is anything but small town. Back in New York City O'Flaherty resumes his role as a tough but fair inner-city high school teacher. While attending a St. Patrick's Day parade the controversial Grand Marshal, Fintan Conway--whose enemies stretch from the IRA to the Papacy to Miami drug traffickers--takes to the chest, three bullets from a masked assassin and is left for dead. O'Flaherty, witness to the events, soon finds himself unraveling the mystery behind the shooting at the urging of his fiancee, Fidelma Muldoon. Muldoon is a modern day Maureen O'Hara equal to her beauty, spirit, and individuality. Harrington knows the mystery genre well and it's obvious that he demands of himself taut writing, swift pace, bushels of humor, Irish wit, and above all, fairplay plotting. There's no sorcery in O'Flaherty's conclusions and there are no wasted tributaries on the road to culpability. A Great Day for Dying also introduces Detective George Washington. A seasoned, New York City cop--McCoy from the get go. readers may at first feel uncomfortable with the author's "George Washington" device, but much like Arthur Upfield's shamus, Napolean Bonaparte--"Boney" to friends--Washington quickly emerges as a keeper. He could easily carry a series on his own. In a Great Day for Dying Danny O'Flaherty and his world around him develop wonderfully. An excellent, swift, and satisfying read. --Andrew McAleer is the editor of Crimestalker Casebook and the author of Appearance of Counsel.
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Format: Hardcover
While teaching in Ireland for a year on an exchange program, Danny O'Flaherty solved a couple of murders. He recently returned to his home in New York City where his fiancee Fidelma Muldoon illegally stays too, though her Visa expired. Fidelma persuades Danny to accompany her to the St. Patrick's Day parade, an event he hates because it has become more revelry than a celebration of ethnic pride.

Someone shoots the controversial Grand Marshal Fintan Conway near where Danny and Fidelma are observing the events. The police arrest illegal immigrant Brendan Grady, a friend of Peter and Fidelma. Since Danny provided an eye witness account of what he observed and Fidelma knows he has solved at least two homicides, she insists he find the real killer. Brendan was in the room where Conway was shot, but he refuses to explain why. Despite misgivings on becoming involved, Danny investigates the killing only to learn more than he ever wanted to know about ethnic loyalties.

A GREAT DAY FOR DYING captures the ambiance and gala feeling that New York's St. Patrick's Day parade provides to much of the locals and visitors. The tale also looks at the politics that go on behind the scenes, especially that of the Big Apple's Irish community. Danny remains a terrific character who in spite of his doubts instinctively champions justice. Readers will enjoy Jonathan Harrington's latest work while eagerly awaiting more novels in a tremendous series.

Harriet Klausner
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