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All He Saw Was The Girl by Peter Leonard

Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Rome: 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.Detroit: 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 humour, All He Saw Was the Girl takes place as these two narratives converge in the backstreets of Italy's oldest city. A thrilling ride, it once again displays Peter Leonard's genius for exploring the wrong turns that life can take.Peter Leonard's growing fan base includes greats such as Carl Hiaasen ('great storytelling') and Michael Connelly ('clever plotting and blood and guts characters'), and publications as diverse as Uncut ('sensational'), the Daily Mirror ('stunning') and the Big Issue ('brilliantly snappy').

Goodreads Summary

Fast paced in Rome: a stolen taxi, a stay at Rabibbia – one of Italy’s toughest prisons, a small-time mobster who looks like Fabio, and two Loyola students studying (and drinking) abroad.  The students’ names indicate their life stations.  Charles Tallenger III is the son of a U.S. senator and goes by “Chip”.  McCabe is just McCabe; tough kid from Detroit, but generally a straightforward student who stops bullying, protects his friends, and catches purse thieves.  Then, circumstances cause him to turn small-time mobster himself…and he’s good at it!  Leonard alternates between that story line, and then adds another storyline in Detroit with a Secret Service agent, his unhappy wife, and an American mob boss. 

The timeline moves smoothly between the American and Italian action.  I loved the glimpses of Italy, and when is a story about the mob boring or unpopular?  Joey, though, is one unpopular character for me; way too crude – no redeeming qualities.  I liked McCabe, Angela, Ray, and Sharon.  The dialogue and action is shotgun quick.  There’s no down time.

Three and a Half Stars     

*Reviewed by Colleen*

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This product or book may have been distributed for review, this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.


  1. CMash said...:

    Thank you for exciting review.

  1. Ooooh....that sounds like an awesome book! :D

  1. Oooh, Italy and the mob? Definitely sounds like an interesting book! Thanks for the review! :)

  1. jwhitus said...:

    Wow, my husband might even like this book! Thanks for your thoughts.

  1. Oh, this is cool!(: Great post.

  1. TayteH said...:

    Sounds interesting. Well, anything with Mafia in it does. :D Thanks for the review.

  1. Denise Z said...:

    Thank you for sharing today. This is a new book for me and I will have to look into it further :)

  1. Thank you all for the great comments!

  1. This genre is not my usual kind of read, but I'm always willing to read something different from what I usually read. Plus, I'd love to experience Italy, too. I can go for "shotgun" action and dialogue! Thanks for your review.

  1. erin said...:

    thanks for the great review!

  1. This sounds pretty good actually....Thanks for the review....i will add this to my list to read.

  1. Cricket said...:

    Great review, may think about adding this to my list.

  1. Sophia said...:

    I don't think this book is for me, so I'll probably skip it, but I'm glad you liked it! Great review!

  1. Lili said...:

    Ah, I've never read a book that has to do with mobs! I've done a lot of studying the Italian mafia in school this year, so this book immediately piked my interest!