Review: Gods and Fathers – James LePore

Paperback: 300 pages
Publisher: Story Plant, The (December 29, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1611880297
ISBN-13: 978-1611880298
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Nationally bestselling author James LePore has established a reputation as a writer whose vividly drawn characters and morally complex plots have kept readers up to all hours turning pages. His new novel promises more sleepless nights and more nonstop thrills.

Matt DeMarco is an accomplished Manhattan attorney with more than his share of emotional baggage. His marriage ended disastrously, his ex-wife has pulled their son away from him, and her remarriage to a hugely successful Arab businessman has created complications for Matt on multiple levels. However, his life shifts from troubled to imperiled when two cops – men he’s known for a long time – come into his home and arrest his son as the prime suspect in the murder of the boy’s girlfriend.

Suddenly, the enmity between Matt and his only child is no longer relevant. Matt must do everything he can to clear his son, who he fully believes is innocent. Doing so will require him to quit his job and make enemies of former friends – and it will throw him up against forces he barely knew existed and can only begin to comprehend how to battle.

GODS AND FATHERS is at once a powerful mystery and a provocative international thriller, all of it presented with LePore’s signature fascinating characters placed in dire circumstances where every choice poses new and potentially fatal challenges.


Matt DeMarco – Lawyer
Debra DeMarco – Matt’s ex-wife.
Michael DeMarco – Suspected in the murder of his girlfriend.


I thought Mr. Lepore did a good job with the character development. We see a lot of Matt’s past, his military history, and some of the demons that continue to haunt him. We see the conflict between him and his son, and get to experience the torment he feels over not being able to have a relationship with his son.

The story get me involved from page one to the end. The antagonist’s goals were realistic and fit with the characters. I was a bit disturbed at first because it all seeemed to have an anti-arabic slant to it, but in the end he seemed to correct that with one of the characters.

There was some strong language, and adult situations and for that reason I’d say the target audience is older teens and adults.

Overall, I found it to be a very engaging story and think anyone who enjoys political thrillers would probably enjoy this story. Grab a copy, and when you read it, stop by and let me know what you think.


“Why can’t you stay at your mother’s when they’re away?”

“I told you, Basil’s worried about security.”

Though this statement was challengeable on several levels, Matt let it pass. The marriage six years ago of Debra DeMarco, nee Rusillo, and Basil al-Hassan, a rich and handsome Syrian businessman, had marked the beginning of the end of Matt’s long and tortured fight for a place in his son’s heart. Armed with the ultimate weapon—-her new husband’s money—-Debra had made quick work of destroying the last vestiges of Matt’s hopes. A penthouse on Park Avenue, a beach house in Easthampton, a flat in Paris, a “cottage” in Bermuda, clothes and cars virtually on demand, Matt had no way of competing with all this, and no way of expressing his anger—-until tonight.

“What about Mina?” Matt asked.

“What about her?”

“Why aren’t you seeing her?”

“She’s studying.”


“Yes, studying. You keep repeating what I say. She’s a student. Students study.”

This statement was delivered dismissively, not sarcastically. You’re stupid, Dad. I’m tired of you. Why am I bothering with you? are what Matt heard, and it occurred to him, with a clarity that shocked him after all these muddled and painful years of effort and rejection, effort and rejection, ad nauseum, that he could not hurt Michael, that his own son was indifferent to him, and this was a blow, and strangely a release.

“Well, your friends are assholes, and you are too, Michael. You’re an arrogant, shallow asshole. Where you came from, I don’t know. But not from me.”

“That could be. Maybe Mom had an affair–like you did–and I’m not your son. Do I care? No, I don’t. Can I go upstairs now? I’ll leave in the morning.”

In the kitchen, Matt poured himself another scotch. He took the pizza out of the refrigerator and sat down to eat it, surprised to find that he actually had an appetite. Until tonight, despite the bad cards he had drawn, he had never stopped trying to break through to his son. It’s over, he said to himself, over and done. He’s not your son. He’s Debra’s son, Basil’s son. You lost him a long time ago.

He finished the pizza and was wrapping the garbage to take out in the morning when the doorbell rang. Looking out the kitchen window he saw that it was snowing heavily. Those idiots, he thought, they’re probably stuck someplace. No choice but to let them in. But when he swung open the front door, it wasn’t Adnan and Ali, but his friends Jack McCann and Clarke Goode, homicide detectives who he had worked with for many years, standing facing him. He could see their unmarked car at the curb, and behind it, blocking his driveway, a Pound Ridge patrol car, its engine running and headlights on, two uniformed officers in the front seat. McCann, a florid Irishman whose blue eyes were usually lit by some inner secret joke, looked grim; and Goode, a gnarled black man who never failed to greet Matt with a big smile, was not smiling. Far from it.

“Come in. What’s up?” Matt said. Then, nodding toward the street where the patrol car sat: “What’s with the uniforms?”

The two detectives stepped into the foyer.

“Take your coats off,” Matt said. He could see they were dressed for work, sport jackets and ties on under their trench coats.

“Matt…,” McCann said.

“Talk, Jack,” Matt said. “Is somebody dead?”

“Is Michael home?” Goode asked. He had not taken off his coat, and neither had McCann.

“That’s his car out there,” Matt said. “You know that.”

“Where is he?”

“He’s upstairs.”

Matt looked from McCann to Goode, then back to McCann; looked in the eyes of each, and did not like what he saw. “What about Michael?” he asked.

“We’re here to arrest him,” McCann replied.

“For what?” Drugs, Matt thought, good, let the kid get a taste of the pain he’s always inflicting on others. Him and his two Arab suppliers.

“For murder, Matt,” Goode said.

About the Author

Mr. Lepore is currently on tour promoting Gods and Fathers. As part of this tour, we present an interview with Mr. Lepore. You can read the interview here. You can also enter a giveaway to win a copy of Mr. LePore’s yet to be released A World I Never Made here.

After you’ve visited and read our interview and enter the giveaway, visit the other stops on Mr. LePore’s Tour Schedule.  There are 20 exclusive reviews for today only and his tour continues through April.

Feb 7:Showcase~J.C. Martin, Freedom Writer
Feb 7th:  Review & Guest Post~CMash Loves To Read
Feb 7:Review~Sweeping Me
Feb 7:Review & Giveaway~Books R Us
Feb 7:Review~Live To Read
Feb 7:Review~Reviews By Molly
Feb 7:Review & Giveaway~Rather Be At The Beach
Feb 7:Review~Me And Reading
Feb 7:Review~The Top Shelf
Feb 7:Review~Books For Me
Feb 7:Review~Words By Webb
Feb 7:Review+Guest Post~Tontowilliams Electronic Scrapbook
Feb 7:Review~Alaskan Bookie
Feb 7:Review & Giveaway~Sapphryia’s Book Reviews
Feb 7:Review~My Reading Room
Feb 7:Review~Everything Distills Into Reading
Feb 7:Review & Giveaway~From The TBR Pile
Feb 8:Review, Guest Post & Giveaway~Words By Webb
Feb 13:Review~Bab’s Book Bistro
Feb 15:Review~Read It. Blog It. 
Feb 16:Review~Words I Write Crazy
Feb 20:Review & Giveaway~Kritter’s Ramblings
Feb 22:Review~Book Lover Stop
March 2: Review~A Novel Reaction
March 13:  Review~Ann’s Reading Corner
Mar 14:Review & Giveaway~Author Joel M. Andre 
March 15th:  Review~Purple Penguin Reviews
Mar 18:Review& Giveaway~Read2Review
March22nd:  Review~Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book March 24th:  Review~My Bookshelf
March 26th: Review~My Bookshelf
Mar 28:Review~Jagged Edge Reviews
April 5:Review~Books And Needlepoint
April 10:Review~Ryder Islington’s Blog
April 11:Review~GivingNSharing
April 15th:  Review~I ♥ Reading
April 18:Review, Guest Post & Giveaway~ Everyday Is An Adventure
April 19:Review~Kim’s Bookish Place
April 23:Review~Silver’s Reviews
April 25:Review~Katalina Play Room

About the Author:

James LePore is an attorney who has practiced law for more than two decades, and an accomplished photographer. He is the author of three previous novels, A WORLD I NEVER MADE, BLOOD OF MY BROTHER, and SONS AND PRINCES, as well as the story collection, ANYONE CAN DIE. He lives in Westchester County, NY with his wife, artist Karen Chandler.


*Disclaimer* A special thanks goes out to Cheryl at Partners in Crime Tours for a review copy of this book. It in no way influenced my review. You can discuss it here or join my facebook page and discuss it there.

3 Responses to “Review: Gods and Fathers – James LePore”

  1. Cheryl "Mash" Says:

    Thank you for your honest, on target and concise review. Great post!!

  2. Paula Howard Says:

    This book sounds very interesting. Adding to my TBR list.

  3. Jim LePore Says:


    Thank you for reading and reviewing. I’ll take ‘very engaging’ any time. I think any writer would.