Title:When No One Is Watching
Release Date:October 2011
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About the Book:
On the eve of announcing his run for Congress, rising political star Blair Van Howe causes a deadly car wreck. Passed out drunk in the passenger seat is his alcoholic best friend, Danny Moran. Panicked at the thought of seeing his promising future explode into scandal, Blair moves his comatose friend into the driver’s seat, dials 911, and flees the scene.
When the police arrive and Danny comes to, it appears to him and everyone else that he was the cause of the fatal wreck, and he is left to face life-altering consequences: criminal prosecution, financial ruin, public disgrace and overpowering guilt. As Danny struggles to pick up the pieces of his shattered life, Blair embarks on a meteoric rise to political stardom. But when a dogged detective digs deeper into the case, the political superstar must ask himself just how far he is willing to go to protect his dark secret.
Longtime lawyer and chief ethics officer Joseph Hayes spins a tale involving ambition, corruption and scandal within Chicago political circles. Within the framework of this page-turning thriller is a compelling contemporary morality play dealing with ethics, personal responsibility and making a difference. It explores the rationalizations our political leaders often make — justifying their self-serving personal agendas in the name of promoting the “greater good.” It examines the notion that character and integrity are defined by how we behave when no one is watching and the far-reaching consequences of the decisions we make when facing ethical dilemmas. It explores the impact of guilt on the human mind and heart and searches for inspiration and heroism in unexpected places.
When No One is Watching also explores the volatile and tragic world of alcoholism through the story of Danny Moran, who despite losing nearly everything due to his drinking, somehow manages to hold onto his moral compass and his sense of hope. Danny’s character was inspired by Hayes’s own father, an alcoholic who found lasting sobriety through AA and devoted his life to helping others do the same.
About the Author:
Joseph Hayes is a native of Chicago. He grew up in a family of eight children in the Beverly neighborhood on Chicago’s Far South Side, where the Irish-Catholic heritage and influence was strong and visible. Joe attended St. Barnabas Elementary School, Brother Rice High School and De Paul University before leaving Chicago to attend law school in California, at UC Berkeley. Since graduating from Berkeley, he has practiced law in Chicago, San Diego and Houston. Joe currently serves as chief ethics officer and assistant general counsel for a large, publicly held company based in Houston, Texas, and is widely recognized as one of the foremost experts in his field. In his professional capacity, he has written extensively about legal and ethical issues and frequently speaks about such issues be! fore employee and industry groups. When No One is Watching is his first work of fiction. His second novel, a legal thriller entitled Consequential Damages, is expected to be published soon.
Joe currently resides in The Woodlands, Texas, with his wife, Susan, and their three children, Amy, Sean and Erin.
Holy cow, this was good! I honestly did not think I would like this as much as I did, but Joseph Hayes knows how to suck the reader in and give them a treat! Wow! This has thrills, suspense, and fantastic characters.
Danny and Blair, lawyers and best friends since law school. Danny is an all around good guy, save for his drinking. He drinks til he passes out and can’t remember anything. Blair’s an okay guy, except for one thing. He’s self centered. Yep. He’s a lawyer on the road to becoming congressman, and he can’t let anything ruin that. He and Danny celebrate the victory of a trial they’ve won, along with the success of Blair moving to higher political standings. Blair is forced to drive Danny’s fancy, fast car home since Danny’s too drunk. When Blair takes a turn too fast, he almost collides head on with another car…..a car that hits a tree and puts a father in coma, and a young daughter scared. Blair does something drastic….moves his best friend to the drivers seat and leaves the scene. Remorseful and shamed, he still hides it and acts like nothing is wrong.
Detective Vic Slazak knows somethings off with the scene and the “bad guy”. Something doesn’t set right with him and he will do what it takes to prove his feelings true. He knows that there is more to the story of the night of the accident and as he pieces the puzzle together and evidence reveals itself, he’s out to prove his knowledge.
I loved every up, down, in, out, twist and turn of this incredibly written story of right vs. wrong. Through the tragic accident and thinking no one knows what happens, Hayes shows us what the consequences of doing what Blair did are. Just because we thinking no one knows, doesn’t make it right to cover it up. A fantastic thriller filled with rights, wrongs, politics and crime, this dramatic story will grip every suspense lover out there.The characters are believable and the plot line is outstanding. A definite 5 Book worthy novel by a highly talented author who knows what he’s doing! I can’t wait for another intense novel from Joseph Hayes. AWESOME work, Mr. Hayes!
Nest Stop:October 5 Review@Books R Us Online