Literature: Dennis Lehane

Dennis Lehane became an American literature star when his 2001 novel, Mystic River, was made into an Academy Award-winning film. Since then, the bestselling author has done some writing for HBO's The Wire and penned a few books, most recently, The Given Day. The 700-page epic saga takes place in Boston at the tail end of Word War I, when the city was suffering from all manner of historic hardships, from the 1919 Boston Police Strike to the Spanish Influenza pandemic. The story is told from the point-of-view of two disparate characters: Danny Coughlin, the eldest son of the city's police captain and an Irish beat cop who finds himself caught up in the struggle to unionize the Boston Police Department; and the man he befriends, Luther Laurence, an African-American baseball player who flees from his Tulsa, Okla. home after a run-in with a crime lord and lands a job working in Boston as the houseman for the Coughlin family. The New York Times has hailed the novel as "a huge, impassioned, intensively researched book that brings history alive by grounding the present in the lessons of the past." Pick up a copy of The Given Day when Lehane appears in Tampa for a reading and signing event hosted by Inkwood Books. Tues., Oct. 21, 7 p.m., Inkwood Books, 216 S. Armenia Ave., Tampa, 813-853-2638, free admission.

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