Sacred Heart

Marcel Montecino, Author Pocket Books $23 (384p) ISBN 978-0-671-01539-8
A gangster and priest trade places in Montecino's engrossing thriller set in New York and Mexico during the late 1920s. When a dirty cop sells out the Irish-run Coyne mob of New York City's Hell's Kitchen to their Italian enemies, sole survivor Tommy Coyne finds himself in an ugly situation: trapped in his parish church, surrounded by bloodthirsty cops, holding priest John O'Rourke hostage. To save Tommy's life, O'Rourke shows him a secret passage to a city pipeline beneath the church. Donning vestments and carrying O'Rourke's passport, Tommy joins his brother Frank, a Jesuit missionary, in Mexico. Tommy turns out to have left the frying pan for the fire, as Mexican revolutionaries round up Catholic priests and sympathizers for execution. After a daring escape from the gallows and some fancy shooting earn Tommy the moniker Padre Pistolero, the revolution--and rivalry with pious Frank--combine for some rewarding (albeit plausibility-stretching) twists for all involved. Montecino (The Crosskiller) backs up his fireworks with crisp writing, well-defined characters and expert pacing for a thrilling ride across perilous terrain. Film rights to Warner. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/03/1997
Release date: 11/01/1997
Genre: Fiction
Hardcover - 448 pages - 978-0-671-93210-7
Mass Market Paperbound - 440 pages - 978-0-671-01540-4
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