The Fifth Man Review
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The Fifth Man is the sequel to—and takes place eight years after—Sons and Princes. The question still remains as to who Chris Massi truly is. Is he just a lawyer, or did he take over where his Mafia assassin father left off? Is he now a prominent and powerful member of a crime family? Not even his children, Matt and Tess, are sure—but one thing is certain: he possesses a whole lot of power just to be a lawyer.

Matt’s grandfather, Joseph Massi, left him two million dollars in a storage unit owned by a woman named Anna Cavanagh. Unsure of what to do about the money, Matt consults his father, who tells him to do what he wants; the money is now his. But Matt wants to know why his grandfather left that much money in an unlikely place.

Matt soon draws the attention of the Russian Mafia, and he finds himself dodging assassins and those who want to get their hands on the money. Anna, the woman he’s come to care for, and Matt’s sister get dragged into the mess. Matt’s father, Chris, then finds that he has to make difficult decisions that could have catastrophic consequences for his family.

Author James LePore manages to make the world of one Mafia family an intriguing place, mainly because he digs deep into his characters and brings them to life—while, at the same time, keeping them down-to-earth and ordinary, so readers will be able to relate to them. Matt Massi is a truly likable character who is more interested in truth and justice than power—as is his father.

However, the plot gets off to a slow start, and it doesn’t really heat up until about a third of the way through the novel, which could cause some readers to put it down and not pick it back up. But I’ve learned in my reading that if you stick with something, most of the time you’ll be glad you did. And The Fifth Man falls into that category.

Once The Fifth Man starts percolating, you’ll be drawn into a world of intrigue, passion, and suspense—a world where anything can happen and the endings aren’t always so great. The plot is complex enough to keep you guessing, but it comes together in a believable and understandable ending.

James LePore keeps getting better and better, and The Fifth Man proves it with its rapid-fire dialogue and gripping circumstances. Give him a try; I think you’ll like him.

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