Published synopsis:When Paul Forte is indicted by a federal grand jury, everyone suspects prosecutor Bernard (don’t call him “Bernie”) Kilroy has more on his mind than justice. Then the FBI agent in charge of Paul’s case gives him a clue to the mystery: Kilroy is bent on settling an old family score, and he’s not above breaking the law to do it.
Paul is already dealing with the death of his parents and divorce from a woman he still loves. Now, with the support of an alluring grand juror, Paul must expose the vindictive prosecutor’s own corruption before the jury renders a verdict on his Osso Buco.
Review:It’s just a game of golf. A game of camaraderie that creates bonds that can last a lifetime. Right? Or is it really an evil tool used by some to bring about the destruction of our political system one hole at a time?
Paul Forte is an honest guy who served his time as a politician voting his conscience. So what was the harm in playing a few (read a hundred or so) games of golf with lobbyists who never asked him for anything? They didn’t affect his votes. Right? Looking at a prison sentence because of charges brought on by a vindictive enemy he didn’t even know he had a connection with, Paul has to figure out the answer to that question. Is his conscience truly as clean as he has convinced himself it is?
Whether it is considering his somewhat gray past, exposing grand scale misuse of federal funds or figuring out how to love someone new when his life is falling apart, Paul faces it all with courage and strength. He also shows an intense vulnerability that endears him to readers. You will find yourself wanting to be on his side regardless of what side of the green you fall on in regards to the issues of lobbyists and politicians. Paul knows how the games are played and he finds out who his friends really are as he searches for answers and support. He also learns that sometimes the love of a quirky and extremely honest woman can get you through some of the toughest times of your life.
Diary of a Small Fish exposes layers of corruption in the government that we all suspect are there. But do we really want to know if they are there or not? Do we just want to cheer the television screen when a ‘dirty politician’ is indicted, or do we want to have to think about the politics that may be behind it? Is that guy corrupt – or are the guys attacking him the corrupt ones? To put this in perspective in our daily lives consider the medical field and drug sales. Physicians are no longer supposed to receive gratuitous gifts from sales reps. That very expensive pen advertising a specific drug that your doctor is using, which was given to her by a sales rep, on some level makes you feel the drug it advertises is effective and recommended by her. Should she be indicted for using it if she prescribes that drug even if she feels it is the right one for you? What if she plays golf with the sales rep? What if she takes a vacation on the drug company’s dime? When does it become an indictable offense? The same goes for politics. Sometimes, a game of golf is just a game of golf. Just as the pen your doctor is using could simply have been the first one she pulled out of her desk that morning. While still acknowledging that there is indeed corruption in the world of politics, perhaps some of it does comes down to perception – how it looks to the masses and how that perception can be used to advance careers.
In this look at the behind the scenes world of politics, Pete Morin shows some of its ugly underbelly but there is an undertone in his writing that gives one hope that maybe there are a few good politicians out there. The more I got to know his characters, the more hope I felt. I thank the author for a review copy and I give the book five stars.