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Dueling with the Catholic hierarchy and ...
Dueling with the Catholic hierarchy and combing through seedy gay hangouts, Fontana encounters dangerous characters and powerful forces intent on stopping him. When Fontana himself is attacked, he knows he must find answers before any more lives are lost. The web of intrigue and deceit is intricate, tangled, and deadly.
Fontana deftly balances his work as a P.I. with his position as owner of StripGuyz, a troupe of male strippers; he must also negotiate the intricacies of love and relationships which he has been avoiding all too long.
Will the solution uncover a decades old plot to kill a pope or will Fontana find that jealous rage or academic rivalry caused Brandt's death? The only thing Fontana can be certain of is that Brandt's enemies have killed once and won't hesitate to murder a private eye who gets too close to the truth.
Posted January 26, 2010
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I'm hopeful and looking forward to more books from Joseph R.G. DeMarco about Marco Fontana. Once the story got going, it was fun, interesting, entertaining, with a touch of tasteful sexy romance, and hard to put down while trying to figure out who the killer is.
Marco is hired by an ex-priest Hollister, to find out who murdered his partner Helmut. The media and detective Gina Giuliani only see it as just another mugging, involving another homosexual. So, who cares, right? They have more important and higher priority cases to work on. Hollister insists that Helmut's death was a murder, because he was working on a book that would name those behind the murder conspiracy of Pope John Paul the First. The Catholic Church's views on homosexuality, its tarnished reputation with young boys, and its ability to keep their embarrassing secrets hidden do not make this an easy task for Marco.
Another author Quinn, was working on the same material, and claims that Helmut stole it from him. But, is that enough motive to commit murder? Along with his P.I. work, Marco also owns and operates the side business, StripGuyz at the club Bubbles. These performers can be just as catty as some drag queens, if not worse. StripGuyz' manager Anton, is Marco's love interest, but Anton will not take him seriously until Marco is ready to commit. Marco struggles with the idea of being monogamous and happy. He breaks one the top rules for a P.I. Marco falls in love with one of the informants in his murder case, while weighing his options with Anton too. He's a young priest who works in the Archdiocesan headquarters in Philadelphia, Kusek.
The lack of clues in this case and word of mouth will take Marco to some dark places like Stella, to murdered young men who know who shot Helmut, and all the way back to Rome. How can he find love, solve the case, and stay alive, while not losing a bet that could end up with him naked on the performing stage at Bubbles?
Posted November 29, 2009
When author Helmut Brandt is gunned down on a quiet street in Philadelphia, most of the residents of that "gayborhood" assume it was simply a mugging gone wrong. But Brandt's lover believes it was an intentional "hit" on his partner, due to his controversial writings that suggested a Catholic Church conspiracy in the death of Pope John Paul the First, and hires gay private investigator Marco Fontana to find the killer. His preliminary investigation uncovers some rather suspicious individuals connected with the Diocese, and a series of threats and ambushes tell him he is on the right track.
Fontana is not your typical P.I. Besides being openly gay, he also owns and operates "Strip Guyz," a troupe of male strippers that packs them in nightly at a local gay club. The troupe's manager, Anton, sometimes helps out on cases, along with Marco's no-nonsense Russian secretary Olga, and numerous close friends who bring their unique skills and connections to the mix.
Author DeMarco plans this to be the first in a series of Marco Fontana mysteries, and I think he's off to a great start. Though this was a bit lengthy, it is a well-written, suspenseful story that will satisfy even the most picky mystery fan. A bubbling Philly cheesesteak, and five stars out of five!
- Bob Lind, Echo Magazine