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Reviewed by Lee Ashford for Readers' Favorite
Eighth Circle by Theodore Jerome Cohen is the fifth novel by this author featuring the inimitable Detective-Inspector Lou Martelli, and it is every bit as captivating as its predecessors in the series. Sprinkled with numerous documented factoids, Eighth Circle will take you on a fascinating journey of intrigue and organized crime in which Martelli and his partner, Sean O’Keeffe, once again face unyielding pressure from above, while confronting danger most foul, this time in NYC’s “Little Italy” enclave. Tapping into a wealth of NYPD expertise, Martelli gathers information about various parties of interest as he and O’Keeffe struggle to make sense of a seemingly random execution-style double homicide. The big question, though, is will Martelli survive this case, or has his good fortune finally abandoned him?
Eighth Circle is another brilliantly conceived and achieved fiction story based on actual events, as only Cohen can accomplish. Not unlike the late, great Louis L’Amour, when Cohen describes a building, a street, or a historical event, it actually exists as described. People familiar with New York City will no doubt be surprised to recognize some of the names and faces mentioned in Eighth Circle. With the frequent use of footnotes, Cohen provides not only documentation of his facts, but internet links to provide further information for anyone wishing to delve deeper into the history behind various aspects of the story. As always, this masterful blend of fact with fiction makes for a very entertaining story, with just enough truth to it to make the reader feel as if he is witnessing history in the making. I strongly recommend the entire series of Detective-Inspector Lou Martelli stories, but there is no need to read them in the order written; each is a stand-alone tale in its own right. Check out Eighth Circle for yourself and see if you don’t agree.