The Morning Line
On a raw winter night in Northern Ireland, a misplaced bullet from the rifle of a British Army sniper sets off a series of events that culminate a decade later on a sun-filled summer day at Saratoga Race Course in upstate New York. In those intervening years, a sister and brother are torn apart from the violence gently known as "the Troubles." Feisty Annie McGuire seeks retribution. Her brother, Aidan, schemes for more than an eye for an eye. Aidan trains the great race horse, Irish Eagle. A brilliant success on the European circuit, the three-year-old cold is pointed to the Travers Stakes at Saratoga. But this will be no ordinary stakes race.
From the vestry of a hillside church in an Irish village, a stately gentlemen's club in London, and the "social clubs" of Boston's Irish and Italian gangsters, deception, blackmail and fatal decisions are plotted and put in place. Then, late on a Saturday afternoon in August, as the horses thunder down the homestretch at fabled Saratoga, it becomes clear that relying on inside information can be a hazardous game.
Did a casual comment from a B-girl working at a seedy bar in Boston's "Combat Zone" inspire the most notorious art theft in the nation's history? A decade after the looting, the penchant of a superior court judge for old masterpieces brings the infamous museum heist and a billion dollar family court brawl onto the same page.
A pair of the city's most prominent lawyers takes on the task of defending Cosmos Theopoulis, an acerbic tycoon accused of fleecing his niece and nephew out of their interest in the family business empire. As the court proceedings take an undecided turn against their unforgiving client, defense council turn to insidious means in a desperate attempt to avoid a catastrophic judgement. They scheme to besmirch and derail the trial judge through the manipulation of her law clerk. Unknowingly, the clerk provides information that could involve Her Honor in the disappearance of the priceless museum paintings. The story unfolds in both posh and hardscrabble neighborhoods of Boston and its suburbs as its players succumb to greed, power, and love without concern for those left in their backwash.