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Iron House

1 rating: 4.0
a book by John Hart

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Author: John Hart
Genre: Mystery thriller
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Date Published: July 12, 2011
ISBN: 9780312380342
1 review about Iron House

"Bless this house oh Lord, we pray, make it safe." Song lyrics

  • Jun 26, 2011
Have you ever considered how hard it it to get out of an impossible situation and change the future?

Michael and his brother, Julian, were raised in a home for boys. Iron House provided shelter and discipline. Julian was constantly abused and bullied by the other boys, Michael wanted to protect his brother and was forced to fight for both of them. As a result, he became a ferocious combatant.  When Julian did finally strike back at his main tormentor, Michael took the blame.

Julian was adopted and Michael left the home and lived on the streets, frequently having to defend himself. At age fifteen, he was attacked by a group of boys in Spanish Harlem. He fought courageously. Otto Kaitlin, a crime boss, witnessed the fight and rescued Michael. Otto saw a similarity to himself as a youngster. Michael became his protege and later, his main enforcer. Otto's own son, Steven, continued his education but lacked Michael's fighting spirit.

Years later, Michael meets Elana and falls in love. When she becomes pregnant, Michael decides he wants to get out of the live and to have a normal existence. In his life, Michael loved three people, his brother, Otto, and now Elena. He asks Otto for his blessing but Otto is near death. Michael realizes that Otto's son, Steven and his main henchman, Jimmy, won't allow him to leave.

When Michael visits Otto once again, Otto is suffering so greatly from his pain that when Otto pleads with Michael to end his suffering, Michael obliges.

In doing this, Michael knows he's made an enemy of Steven and must leave with Elena before Steven and Jimmy can find him and seek revenge.

There is a parallel story of Julian's life after adoption. His adoptive father is a senator running for re-election and his adoptive mother, Abagail, is fiercely protective of Julian. Then Julian's past returns to haunt him and his path and Michael's converge.

This story is reminiscent of Charles Dickens where the characters at the start of the story are in terrible situations and are impoverished. Somehow they must rise above their destitute and the manner in which this transformation occurs is entirely realistic and well described.

With this novel, John Hart's readers will be taken on a dramatic ride that they have never experienced.

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June 27, 2011
Sounds like a great comparison between the characters and their different lives since Iron House.
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