Where It Hurts

Where It Hurts

by Reed Farrel Coleman

Hardcover

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Where It Hurts 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pretty good book not sure if I will look to get anymore by this author but it kept my attention.
TheThirtyYearItch More than 1 year ago
Gus Murphy was a shell of the man he had been two years ago, before the death of his son. He was going through the motions, living, if you can call it that, one day at a time, consumed in grief and pity as his life crumbled around him. Gus went from being a happy husband, father of two, veteran Suffolk County Police Officer, to driving a courtesy van for a fledgling hotel on Long Island, living in a room he was provided as compensation for his work. Gus was nearing his bottom when Tommy Delcamino, a low level criminal he had the pleasure of arresting several times over his career, found him at the hotel. Tommy’s son had been murdered, and Tommy thought the police were doing nothing about it, so he came to Gus for help. Tommy’s request proved to be life-changing for Gus, providing him with challenges he never could have imagined, and not just in the difficulty of helping Tommy. Gus had to question everything: who he had been, who he had become, his career, what was left of his marriage, what was left of his life. The process nearly cost him his life, but in the end, arguably saved it. In Where it Hurts, Mr. Coleman created a great balance in storytelling and character development. Protagonist Gus Murphy transforms from an angry, broken down, hopeless ex-cop to a damaged but optimistic man learning to live again. With more insight than one might expect from a crime fiction, Gus recognizes that his life will never be the same after the death of his son, but he has to find a new normal that will suit what he has become. He does so relentlessly and honestly, “What was left of him lived now only as pieces of the people who had known him. And when we were dead and in the wind, he would be forgotten. That was still the hardest part to take, that he would be forgotten so soon.” But Where it Hurts is not just about Gus Murphy and his rebirth. It includes a fast-paced and well told story containing everything a good murder mystery should: theft, drugs, sex, murder, and corruption! I look forward to reading more about Gus Murphy and his progress. But as I found myself hopeful, Gus himself provided a warning about the very hope that he had created, “I hoped it was real, but I knew hope was the meanest feeling humans were capable of. Nothing tortured you the way hope could.”
ReadYourWrites More than 1 year ago
Where it Hurts.... What’s not to love about a book that depicts an individual’s path to enlightenment and salvation? Where it Hurts may have mainly been about solving a murder but that’s not what made me keep reading. The more intriguing story was about how the main character was able to bring himself back from the brink of emotional suicide due to the surprise death of his oldest child two years ago. Note that this is not a feel good story. There are plenty of body bags to be filled, not to mention police corruption, drugs, and the struggle with religious faith. Johnathan Augustus “Gus” Murphy is a retired Suffolk County Police Officer. For the past two years, he has been mourning the death of his son, John Jr. John Jr died of a heart condition on the basketball court when he was just twenty-years-old. That immediately prompted the gradual implosion of Gus’ marriage as well as the moral decay of his daughter. Gus is currently toiling away as a hotel shuttle driver and part-time bouncer/detective. All of this changes when Gus is approached by a low level criminal named Tommy D looking to get justice for his brutally murdered son TJ. Tommy had approached the cops but has gotten the impression that they could care less about what happened to his prodigal son. After being warned by several cops not to get involved, Gus decides to take the case if for no other reason than to understand why he is being warned off at every stage. Gus was a great cop and would have had a great career had it not been for his loss. It doesn’t take long for his inquiries to lead to more deaths and death threats by both cops and criminals. Gus’ resilience and reflection drives the story. The fact that it’s told in first person, makes it impossible not to feel Gus’ pain and his transformation. Gus not only lost faith in himself, he lost faith in God and he happens to have a former priest as his confidante. There’s also a boxer turned drug dealer, cop turned drug mule, and a doorman who must have been KGB to round out the diverse cast of characters. Gus outshines them all with his quick wit, fearless demeanor, and engaging narrative. The author did a great job of making Gus come off to be an everyman who puts his life on the line to gain both justice and redemption. He even meets a couple of possible love interests along the way. **Received a copy from Penguin: G.P. Putnam’s Sons in exchange for an honest unbiased opinion.**
MarjorieofConnecticut More than 1 year ago
WHERE IT HURTS is the first book in yet another great series from Reed Farrel Coleman. He creates a world of small hard-earned joys and sweeping but realistic lows and you want to follow his characters (in this case one Gus Murphy, a retired Long Island cop with a personal life that is crumbling to dust) on every step of the journey. Coleman writes with beauty and economy, a remarkable mix of the poetic and the hardboiled. We are all the better off for having writing like this that brings us to a world both familiar and thrilling. Enjoy.