A MURDER ON WALL STREET —A JOEY MANCUSO, FATHER DOMINIC CRIME MYSTERY -Book 1 By Owen Parr
Can a priest, his brother, and the brother’s girlfriend solve a murder case and see justice done—or will they be the murderer’s latest victim? I know you will love A Murder on Wall Street, the first book in a contemporary murder mystery series that, would very much appeal to the fans of Michael Connelly.
A Murder on Wall Street takes us inside the world of Captain O’Brian’s Irish Pub and Cigar Bar in Manhattan, a legendary hotspot in the Financial District. Investigating the death are pub owners Joey Mancuso, fired from the NYPD for his unorthodox methods, and his brother Father Dominic, who isn’t your typical priest. Also investigating is Marcy Martinez, a Cuban bombshell and FBI agent who’s Joey’s girlfriend. When a customer kills himself after celebrating the night before, the three know something’s wrong. Turns out, the customer’s death coincides with people losing money, and lots of it—and some of those people are very, very dangerous.
Giuseppe “Joey” Mancuso was asked to retire from the NYPD for using unconventional means to solve his cases. No charges were filed against him, but his official records were conveniently kept confidential in the event he ever filed a grievance against the department.
Joey is now the proprietor of Captain O’Brian’s Tavern & Cigar Bar in Manhattan’s Financial District, together with his half-brother, Father Dominic O’Brian. The tavern established in 1946 by the late U.S. Marine Captain Sean O’Brian upon his return from WWII, is a New York institution catering mostly to military and police personnel, as well as Wall Street types and some other questionable patrons.
Father Dom’s father, U.S. Marine Master-Sargent, Brandon O’Brian, owned and ran the tavern after returning from service in Viet Nam in 1969 coinciding with his father’s, Captain Sean’s death, until his own death in 2016.
Neither Joey nor his half-brother Father Dom are conventional in their ways. Father Dom has lived vicariously through Joey, as he too had wanted to be a police detective. Now, however, they both quest to solve crimes but find themselves tending bar and hearing confessions.
Joey’s on and off official squeeze is a New York FBI Special Agent, Marcela Martinez a Cuban-American bombshell that is a match to Joey’s flippant and un-reverend attitude.
Reviewed by Patricia Reding for Readers’ Favorite
Settling in to read a murder mystery is always a satisfying experience, and with A Murder on Wall Street by Owen Parr, it is also an enjoyable one. In it, readers discover some lovable key characters in the form of Joey Mancuso, a former NYPD homicide detective who left the force in the midst of some “cooked up” charges with Internal Affairs, and his older half-brother, Father Dom, who loves solving mysteries and who is beloved by those around him as a priest with a keen understanding that if he lives his life as a testimony to others, he needn’t preach to them. Together the brothers own Captain O’Brian’s Irish Pub and Cigar Bar in Manhattan’s Financial District. There they meet a wide variety of patrons and from there, they work together to identify the guilty parties behind a series of crimes, beginning with a murderous shove of someone from a high rise, and quickly moving on to the hit and run murder of one of their key witnesses. Add in some financial thugs who’ve been running a Ponzi scheme, a Marilyn-Monroe lookalike with a string of assumed names, and the varied puzzle pieces, with some intriguing angles, eventually come together.
Owen Parr has created a couple of appealing characters in Joey and Father Dom. They both display caring for one another and for Joey’s love interest, Marcy, for the patrons of their bar, and for their wider community. I appreciated Joey’s sense of humor and found Father Dom a quick favorite. Add in the rush of activity of Manhattan’s Financial District and some information that makes understandable some basic background principles of the financial world (such as how a Ponzi scheme works), and the story achieves depth. While the reason the brothers took on the mystery in the beginning (they didn’t have a client, they just didn’t think the conclusions the NYPD reached were in line with the facts as they knew them), and the method the brothers use to disclose the wrongdoers (a meeting with all of the interested parties, held at their bar), were both a bit unorthodox, the approach was certainly unique. This story moves right along, providing readers with an enjoyable getaway with characters they’re sure to want to revisit in other books in Owen Parr’s crime mystery series.
“Parr is a master storyteller, equally adept at weaving a tale of international political intrigue or, as he proves in his latest novel, a classic story of private sleuths cracking a New York murder mystery, with a side order of whiskey and cigars. You’ll want to have both on hand when you pick up this book.” –Jim Nesbitt, author of The Last Second Chance and The Right Wrong Number, Ed Earl Burch hard-boiled detective thrillers.
“A well-plotted and researched detective mystery novel. As much as I tried to solve the case while I read, Parr proved me wrong every time.” —Oscar Rodriguez, Criminal Attorney
“Parr has a knack for creating memorable characters that come to life in the pages of his novels.” —Tom Spencer, Esquire
“Parr’s, A Murder On Wall Street, had me guessing ‘whodunit’ all the way through the end. The culmination is unexpected. Wow, I thoroughly enjoyed the first Mancuso, O’Brian crime mystery novel.” ——Jose Valero, Entrepreneur
“Joey’s love and relationship with Marcy, makes this crime mystery, a love story. Can’t wait for these two to reappear in Parr’s next novel. Enjoyed every minute.” —Cheryl Walker Castela, Author