Don Winslow may not have written “City on Fire” in Homeric Greek, but that’s where the differences end between this tour-de-force of the criminal underground and “The Iliad.” Drawing on the epic Greek tragedy for the literary take of his new novel — the first of a trilogy — Winslow cuts deep into two warring criminal empires both vying for control of New England and it’s not only blood, but deception, betrayal and dishonor that flow from the wounds.

A fierce, biting read, “City on Fire” (William Morrow) centers on 1980s-era Providence, R.I., where the Irish Murphy and Italian Moretti crime syndicates have conspired to share the spoils of the city. The Irish keep to the docks, unions and loan sharking while the Italians work gambling, drugs and protection schemes. In a deal brokered by the heads of the families, Jacky Moretti and John Murphy, the gangs keep to their turfs while alcohol and cigarettes wind their way from the docks to clubs, with everyone getting a piece.

Trending Recipes

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.