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When No One is Watching by [hayes, joseph]
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When No One is Watching Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 439 customer reviews

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Length: 332 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Since obtaining his law degree from Berkeley, Joseph Hayes has practiced law in Chicago, San Diego and Houston. He currently serves the chief ethics officer for a Fortune 1000 company. Hayes resides in The Woodlands, Texas, with his wife, Susan, and their three children.

Product Details

  • File Size: 589 KB
  • Print Length: 332 pages
  • Publication Date: October 5, 2010
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,652 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Without repeating the summaries of the novel from the other reviews, I recommend this to readers who (1)enjoy good story-telling; 2)enjoy thrillers; 3)like a good story that they can read on the beach or the plane; 4) really like to get into a multi-layered morality tale that raises many complex points about personal morality, responsibility, accountability, loyalty, and betrayal. The characters are riveting and it's one of those books that makes you wonder not only what HAPPENS at the end but how the characters have changed based on the events in the book. It's a great book; check it out!
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Format: Paperback
Fans of John Grisham's novels should add this novel to their To-Be-Read list: Joseph Hayes' When No One in Watching.

The story begins as Blair Van Howe is driving his friend and colleague, Danny Moran, home after a celebration for a big legal victory. Danny is passed out drunk when Blair hits another car, seriously injuring the other driver.

Van Howe uses Danny's phone to call 911, and moves Danny into the driver's seat, then flees the scene. The next day, he is scheduled to announce his candidacy for the U.S. Congress, and this would derail his career, which would make his wife and her politically powerful father angry.

Danny has no idea what happened; the last thing he remembers is drinking in the hotel bar. He knows he has a problem with alcohol, but he has never gotten behind the wheel of a car after drinking.

The rest of this fast-paced novel follows the ascent of Blair Van Howe, whom everyone thinks is the next Golden Boy of politics, and the descent of Danny Moran, who loses his job, his wife, and for awhile his freedom, after the driver of the other car dies.

After Danny's loyal daughter begs her dad to get help, he becomes involved in Alcoholics Anonymous. The author says that his father, an alcoholic who got sober and devoted his life to helping others, was the inspiration for Danny. He clearly understands the life of an alcoholic, as he describes Danny's life:
"Even after nearly ten years of sobriety, Danny still craved routine in his life, and the flexible job hours enabled him to live that way. He made his to-do lists every day and followed them with uncompromising discipline. He drank his soft drinks and ate his snacks precisely in accordance with his schedule.
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Format: Paperback
What happens when the two worlds of law enforcement and politics collide? Naturally, a messy business, just as messy as the scenario that forms the opening scenes of When No One Is Watching. Two friends drive home together high on life, the one joy-riding his friend's Porsche, the other passed out cold in the passenger's seat. When a crash occurs and another man is killed, guess who is made to take the blame? Naturally, the latter, who remembers blow all about the incident, apart from having to come to his senses and face the consequences. In a matter of minutes, isn't it just plain ironical how one of your closest buddies can turn into one of your worst nightmares?

When No One Is Watching might appear at first to be a straightforward detective story, but, in fact, has far deeper and more lasting implications. The dramatic irony of the plot, in terms of which we, as readers, know who, in fact, has perpetrated the crime, means that we can view the police investigation of the crime from an omniscient standpoint. The focus, accordingly, is on the interplay between the different characters involved and on the multidimensionality of their psyches rather than on the unraveling of the plot as such. Not that the book is not exciting--it most definitely is, and deeply intriguing, too. The pace of the writing is fluid and fast, engaging the reader from start to finish. The work is also so well written that one can read it in a single sitting--many readers will no doubt feel like sitting up all night reading the novel, so take care when you choose to read it (a weekend would be the best!).

All of the characters, including a child who suffers from Down's Syndrome, are portrayed with empathy and understanding.
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1 Comment 23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback
As the novel opens, Blair Van Howe is a successful attorney with political ambitions. On the eve of announcing his candidature for Congress, he and his friend and colleague Danny Moran have been celebrating a legal victory at a Chicago hotel. Blair offers to drive Danny home, and on the way they are involved in a car accident in which the driver of the other car is seriously injured.

Blair is shaken by the incident, and realises that it could have serious consequences for his political aspirations. Blair arranges the scene as though Danny was driving, anonymously calls 911 and then flees the scene. Blair successfully secures political office, while Danny has to live with the consequences of the accident. Blair and others have invested a lot of effort in keeping his dark secret hidden away, but some of the evidence still exists and may still expose him: a considerable risk as Blair's political aspirations continue to expand.

But how does it end? Does Blair get his comeuppance, and does Danny ever learn the truth? And what difference will it make to both of their lives?

I enjoyed this novel: there were a number of different issues to explore and consider as the story unfolded and the characterizations depicted multi-faceted and flawed human beings. Significant themes in the novel include overcoming dependency and taking personal responsibility. The story is part thriller and part cautionary tale dealing with various moral and ethical issues in a contemporary setting. The book also includes a set of discussion questions which can be used to explore some of the issues raised.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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