And its a mystery
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A murder mystery with a
twist involving a least-likely detective, a
disillusioned, New York City musician named Gary
Morrissey. Gary finds himself involved in a
murder investigation of his own making when
shadows of government corruption and hints of
premeditated genocide are cast over a
friends murder. The authors own
experiences are reflected in his lead character,
whose love for New York City and for its
less-than-attractive suburbs and citizens
emanates from every page and whose musical
knowledge and expertise provide a unique
background for the events that unfold.
Pellegrin strikes the right chord with
guitar-slinger Gary Morrissey, a man who goes
looking for his muse and finds murder instead. A
slice-of-life mystery from someone who s
Rainey, Author of Crossed Borders and UFORCE
Welcome to the
fold, Gary Morrissey! In the same mold as John D.
McDonald s Travis McGee and Robert H.
Parker s Spencer, this beer-loving,
Fiat-driving, musician-cum-detective fictional
character joins the ranks of the greats in this
twisty Chandler-esque thriller. Harry Pellegrin
takes the reader on an exciting spin through the
more colorful and often-dangerous
aspects of New York s lower Hudson River
Valley. It s obvious that Mr. Pellegrin is
destined to make a big splash in the deep end of
the literary talent pool.
Seddon ,Pre-Pro Film Designer
Includes a Foreword by Dónal
Gary Morrissey, a
working musician slowly succumbing to a day job,
has just learned of the death of a friend,
session bass player Devon Jones. The report comes
via the person of Martin Seddon, a mutual friend.
Captain Marty doesnt believe
that the official story of Devons death is
truth. Although neither of the men have any idea
of what they can do to find the unofficial
truth, Gary feels a certain loyalty and a desire
to help Marty since hed helped Gary recover
and cope after a nasty divorce.
Devon had been gunned
down by police officers during a response to what
was purported to be a loud domestic dispute.
However, Devon had been preoccupied with what
hed concluded to be a large-scale drug
dealing conspiracy and had been in fear for his
life. Were the police really responsible? Had
there been truth to his conspiracy theory? More
from a sense of duty to a friend than any desire
to get involved with what could possibly be a
high-stakes illegal empire, Gary decides to ask a
Gary figures he can
research Devons last few months of life by
visiting some of his haunts and talking to those
who knew him. Burdened by his own emotional
wounds and the prospect of a new relationship
with Lisa, a smart and attractive young lady,
Gary is pulled between helping a friend and
keeping Lisa and himself from joining Devon on
the obituary page. His investigation, at first
half-hearted and inept, gradually gains a
position of prominence in his life as he crosses
paths with a Yonkers Police Department homicide
detective with a skeleton literally
in his family closet, the sergeant-at-arms of the
Devils Own, a small, local outlaw
motorcycle club trying to maintain an air of
legality in a tough neighborhood, and a
high-roller drug czar who may not be what he
Gary is falling for
Lisa contradicting his own policy to avoid
emotional dependence at all cost. Lisa too finds
herself developing an emotional attachment that
she says she doesnt believe exists in
real life. She also has a secret that
she is trying to keep Gary from discovering.
Devon thought he had
evidence in his possession that would prove the
existence of a wide-scale government attempt to
kill off the Baby Boomers before they reach
Social Security age. Why before this age? His
assumption was that the government would want to
do this rather than go bankrupt paying out Social
Security benefits to the largest group of
recipients ever. While Gary feels this
theoretical conspiracy is ludicrous,
he becomes more and more convinced that, although
it might not have been the government who had
killed Devon, he just might have had evidence of
something, and that something just
possibly had been proven lethal.
What They're Saying About the
author pens rock 'n' roll mystery
GOODEN , For The Saratogian
Harry G. Pellegrin
Published by Bedside Books
332 pages $22 Trade paperback
'Low End' is a mystery that Harry
Pellegrin's protagonist Gary Morrissey
solves between 1988 and 1989. It is
similar to other mystery crime noir
characters written in the first person,
like Robert B. Parker's Spencer, Raymond
Chandler's Philip Marlowe and Lawrence
Block's Mathew Scudder.
Pellegrin sets the story in the late '80s
New York City rock 'n'roll scene with
believability. His knowledge of blues and
rock is undisputed. He mentions the late
great guitarist Rory Gallagher, who was
not only one of the world's greatest
guitarists, but also a fan of detective
and crime fiction.
The novel begins with a cleverly paced
prologue describing the murder of
Morrissey's friend and former bass player
and bandmate Devon. As a present day
Morrissey reminisces about Devon,
Pellegrin sends the reader back to 1988.
In 1988 Morrissey is a rock 'n' roll
blues guitarist and a recent divorcee who
lives in a hot sticky apartment in the
South [Yonkers]. His day job consists of
repairing copy machines.
He drives a [Fiat 124S Spider] and seems
relatively happy going day to day from
beer to beer, paycheck to paycheck and
gig to gig until a friend and bandmate
named Captain Marty, from their defunct
band Air Raid, informs Morrissey that
their mutual friend and bassist Devon has
died and was possibly murdered.
Captain Marty asks Morrissey to
investigate because he thinks Morrissey
would be good at getting the answers.
Morrissey follows clues and discovers
that everything is not what it seems. He
is led to a gripping cat-and-mouse ending
with a remorseless killer.
'Low End' is crafted like a song. It is a
crime novel narrated in the first person
with the typical wise cracks and
testosterone-fueled bravado, and a
mystery that one can sink their teeth
into. But it is also a spiritual journey.
There are many writers who try too hard
to emulate the masters, like Hammett,
Chandler, MacDonald, Spillane and McBain.
So cumbersome are their efforts, that
they lose their own voices. But
Pellegrin's protagonist has a voice of
the street and a hardened cynical edge,
softened with a good heart.
But readers will trust Morrissey only so
far, because we know that with enough
rope he will hang himself. Morrissey is
like a mouth sore that we just can't help
but touch. We know it's going to hurt but
we don't care. Pellegrin, like God, sits
in the back seat while his creation takes
I look forward to the further adventures
of Morrissey and anything else Harry G.
Pellegrin writes. He has written for
periodicals like Soundboard: The Journal
of the Guitar Foundation of America, The
Horse: Backstreet Choppers. He lives with
his wife and two daughters in rural
upstate New York.
||From Stage to
|By GREG HAYMES, Staff writer
Thursday, November 20, 2003
|From Stage to Page
Scotia's Harry Pellegrin
knows music. He began taking piano
lessons at age 5, switched to bass at 11
and took up guitar at 13. He graduated
from Manhattan's Mannes College of Music,
and played in several rock bands in The
So when Pellegrin began
writing a novel, it was no surprise that
he turned to the world of music. His
first novel is "Low End," a
rock 'n' roll mystery featuring
disillusioned NYC rocker Gary Morrissey,
who finds himself entangled in a murder
investigation set amid the back alleys
and dive barrooms of Yonkers.
"Low End" won't
land in stores until February, but you
can buy a copy online (http://www.
pellegrinlowend.com). Or better yet, drop
by Starbucks on Clifton Country Road in
Clifton Park between 4:30 and 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, where Pellegrin is conducting a
the book? Leave a review at www.authorsden.com, www.barnesandnoble.com, www.allreaders.com or at the following sites!
at your favorite local book retailer!
Please visit these
other fine sites:
for more information
on Rory Gallagher
if you are into cool axes!
to see a Rory Gallagher tribute guitar built by
END is Published by Bedside Books, an imprint of
American Book Publishing.
END Copyright 2003 Harry G. Pellegrin
God We Trust