John T. Lescroart. Dead Irish (1989) 293 pp.
San Francisco bartender Dismas Hardy—thirty-eight years old, divorced,
ex-Marine, ex-cop, ex-attorney—is having trouble finding meaning in his
life when his boss and best friend Moses McGuire—they served together in
Vietnam—asks him to keep an eye on the police investigation into Moses’
brother-in-law Eddie Cochran’s death. To outward appearances, it looks
like a suicide. But no one, including his pregnant widow Frannie, can come
up with any reasons Eddie would have killed himself; and if Eddie’s death
is ruled a suicide, Frannie doesn’t get any of his life insurance. So,
with the semi-official assistance of his former patrol partner, homicide
detective Abe Glitsky, Hardy begins an investigation that takes him from
the industrial center of China Basin to the neighborhoods of the Sunset
District and uncovers the secrets of Eddie’s family history.