Dog Days

Daniel Lyons, Author
Daniel Lyons, Author Simon & Schuster $23 (304p) ISBN 978-0-684-84000-0
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-452-28096-0
Paperback - 288 pages - 978-0-7475-4056-4
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-1-4516-7243-5
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Problems plague this debut from Playboy Fiction Award winner Lyons about a self-absorbed yuppie software developer who runs afoul of the Boston mob. The unlikable Reilly narrates his unlikely adventures while recovering from a breakup with beautiful, successful Harvard alumna Jeannie. While Reilly moons, his pet software scheme gets scuttled, leaving him and his roommate and collaborator, Evan, nothing better to do than war with their neighbors in Boston's blue-collar Italian North End, where the two men (inexplicably) rent a shabby apartment. Only beautiful, college-educated Maria--a checkout girl at the local grocery who dreams of a job in the Peace Corps and falls in love with Reilly--mediates between the two factions. When local Mafia don Davio Giaccolone slashes Reilly's tires, Reilly retaliates by kidnapping Davio's beloved greyhound; Davio vows revenge and chases Evan, Reilly and Maria down to Miami, where they hide out with Maria's uncle Santo, a retiree whose secret connections guarantee a saccharine happy ending for everyone involved. By that time, however, any slim enjoyment of the characters' adolescent antics has been ruined by slow pacing and made-for-TV sentimentality. (June)
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