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L J Hippler

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Member Since: Feb, 2007

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Cathedral Street
by L J Hippler   

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Publisher:  iUniverse ISBN-10:  0595455212 Type: 


Copyright:  May 21, 2007 ISBN-13:  9780595455218

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Cathedral Street

South Baltimore serves as the backdrop for this gripping story of three brothers leading very different lives but joined forever by the secrets of a painful family past.

No one cries when the body of an old man is laid to rest in Louden Park cemetery in south Baltimore. His three sons continue with their intentionally separate lives, hardly grieving their dead father. But recent events stir up memories of the past, and dark secrets begin to surface in Cathedral Street, a novel of a family torn apart by cruelty, and revenge.Each brother in the Miller family pursues his own version of happiness. Tommy is a struggling prizefighter who longs for respect. Jerry is a priest immersed in helping others. Buddy is determined to rise out of poverty and build a life of luxury and wealth.As hard as they try to remain distanced from each other, the Miller brothers soon become hopelessly entangled in a web of revenge and deceit. A tenacious Baltimore homicide detective threatens to forever destroy the lives of Buddy Miller and his family. Buddy and his brothers are forced to choose, between success and those they love, between personal peace and vengeance. They do find peace and redemption, each of them, but in startlingly different ways.  

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They looked angry, the two of them. The taller one had his hands thrust into the pockets of his black suit coat. The shorter, darker man frowned and leaned forward as if walking into a strong wind. At the corner of Fayette and Cathedral Streets, the two men slowed, hesitating until the light changed. “Michelle told me what happened,” the taller one said into the back of the other man’s trench coat as they crossed the street. “I know it’s been a tough year for you.”
“Things went from bad to worse for a while there,” Buddy Miller answered without turning around. “And that’s putting it mildly.” Buddy came to a dead stop as he stepped up onto the curb. He turned and leaned in close to his brother’s face, spitting whispered words as the morning rush hour crowd passed them like a fast-running stream around rocks. “You don’t know half of what I’ve been through. But what you do know makes you happy, doesn’t it? The sinner getting his just rewards.”

Professional Reviews

Never Quite Escaping
Three small boys grow up motherless in blue-collar Baltimore, the influence of their psychotic father shaping each differently. Mr. Hippler has allowed the reader inside the heads of the three as they grow to men and stretch the bonds they were born to. The reader learns that although each of the boys turns out different, they carry the same stamp. The characterization in this book is brilliant and the twists and turns draw the reader through until the end. Sad at times, the realism of the story keeps you coming back. This novel is well worth the read.

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Reader Reviews for "Cathedral Street"

Reviewed by Ellen Tomaszewski 6/3/2008
This complex and creative debut novel tells the tale of three brothers as they reveal the good, bad, and heavy about Baltimore in all it's glory and seaminess, Cathedral Street and it's inhabitants, and a family of three brothers. With sharp, creative scenes that tell more than they appear to, Cathedral Street is a powerful read. Congratulations, LJ. Can't wait for the sequil.
Reviewed by Jean Pike 12/26/2007
In his exceptional debut novel, Cathedral Street, author L. J. Hippler spans the lives of three brothers: Jerry, Buddy and Tommy Miller, from their dysfunctional childhoods through their somewhat stormy and broken adult lives. Jerry, the oldest, finds solace in his faith and enters the priesthood. Tommy, the youngest, seeks to validate himself as a prize fighter, while Buddy, the turbulent middle child, jaded by his impoverished youth, seeks a life of wealth and luxury at any cost. The brothers drift in and out of each other’s lives throughout the story, bound by the ties of family, if not those of brotherly love.

With his colorful imagery, Hippler brings his setting, the city of Baltimore, to life for the reader, while his stunning attention to detail renders his characters living, breathing people who will not soon be forgotten.

I found this book to be extremely well written and enjoyable. The characters were complex and sprang to life from the first page, evoking a gamut of emotions as their stories unfolded, illustrating the novel’s underlying theme: the far-reaching effects of a father’s cruelty, and of a mother’s love. Cathedral Street has won a permanent place in this reader’s bookcase, as well as her heart.

Highly recommended.

Reviewed by Dawn Anderson 11/22/2007
You've got me right from the beginning! The excerpt is wonderful and makes the reader want to know more.
Reviewed by Rosemarie Skaine 11/22/2007
This book promises the reader a look at life and all of its emotions. This promise makes it a good read. Congratulations on your new book, LJ Hippler. R

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