THE EAST END
By Jason Allen

 

Publisher: Park Row Books (May, 2019)
Format: Hardcover
Price: $26.99
ISBN-13: 978-0-7783-0839-3

Kindle: $5.99

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Publisher: Park Row; Reissue Edition  (April, 2020)
Format: Paperback
Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 978-0778309772

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Reviewed by Shirley Wetzel
(September, 2020)

 

It’s the night before the Memorial Day weekend, and Corey Halpern is, as always, dreading the invasion of the rich and famous to their summer mansions in the Hamptons. He resents the wealthy intruders, but he and the others in the small blue-collar town depend on them for much of their income.

Corey can’t wait to get out of the Hamptons when he graduates from high school, but he’s worried about his alcoholic mother and his younger brother, who’s gotten into the drug scene. A lot rides on this summer.

He’s been working off his frustration and boredom by breaking into the mansions at night, taking nothing, but leaving evidence that he was there. This night, he decides to burgle the Sheffield mansion to punish them for treating his mother so poorly in the twelve years she’s worked for them. He didn’t count on anyone coming tonight. He is surprised when Tiffany, the spoiled teenage daughter, and her best friend Angelique, to show up, but he had fun watching them from his rooftop perch. He’d always had a crush on Angelique, and she might just return the feeling.

Corey certainly didn’t expect Mr. Sheffield and his young male lover to show up for a tryst in the family home.  He is stunned by what happens next, almost unable to believe what he sees. He wants to walk away and forget the whole thing, but he is unwittingly drawn into the chaos.

In one fateful weekend, lives are lost, families shattered, reputations ruined. Add in blackmail and young love, and that Memorial Day holiday will forever be one to remember.

This is the author’s debut novel, and it is a winner. The characters are finally drawn and believable. The contrast of the lifestyles of the haves and have-nots, and the issues that can erupt when they clash, is a cautionary tale. Highly recommended.




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