Wednesday 23 May 2018

Release Blitz - The Black Hand by Jonathan Dunne

The Black Hand
Author: Jonathan Dunne

Book Description:
In the aftermath of Ireland’s most deadly gang war, Dublin’s ruling family has scattered to the wind.

Into the void steps a criminal genius known only as The Black Hand. His organisation’s powerful grip is ruthless, bloody and barbaric.

With Europe’s biggest crime in play, The Devil needs a distraction. And The Black Hand needs Jacob Boylan to return to Irish shores. He will stop at nothing to provoke Dublin’s most lethal criminal out of hiding.

But has the wily genius misstepped? As all eyes are on Jacob, the Dublin exile carefully plans a gangland wipeout, for he is nobody’s pawn.

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The Glock was steady in his grasp as he rested it gently under the security guard’s chin. Unloaded, the Glock weighed 660 grams, however this wasn’t empty. A trickle of sweat rolled down the man’s brow as Jacob spoke calmly. 

‘Think of your loved ones. It’s only money. It’s replaceable. Take a deep breath and calm yourself.’
The guard’s eyes were wide with fear. His breathing was shallow. He began to urinate down his left leg.

Jacob watched the last bag of cash disappear into the vehicle. ‘Turn around and face the wall,’ he ordered. The guard obeyed without question. Jacob calmly sat in the back seat as they drove away.

The escape route had been planned. The surveillance was disabled. Nobody spoke as they drove. There was no speeding. The getaway was planned and smooth. 

Jacob removed the balaclava and ran a hand through his sandy-blond hair. The two passengers in the front seat were giddy with excitement but they concealed it well; Jacob had no time for juvenile behaviour. Only the passage of time would offer a definite escape, and even then, he wasn’t sure. 

For twenty minutes, they drove in silence. The abandoned industrial estate was rare for London, otherwise it was perfect. They stepped from the vehicle, removed their overalls, and placed the weapons on the backseat. They were clean, but Jacob didn’t care; they were to be destroyed. A canister of petrol was removed from the trunk, with a small detonator attached. Jacob flicked the switch and didn’t look back as the car exploded.

The white Isuzu’s exterior was emblazoned with Green’s Painters and Decorators. It chugged slowly out of London. Jacob drove, as the two youngsters stared hungrily at the cash bags. 

Slowly, they drove into a lonely lane, where an abandoned bungalow awaited. They showered under a rusty water pipe before changing into new clothes. The old clothes were placed in a blazing stove and burned. 

It took just under two hours to count the money, which totalled £146,400. It had been a good day. Split three ways, after expenses, they bagged £47,500 each. 

Jacob shook hands with his two protégés as he watched the bungalow and the van burst into flames. Eventually, all three walked through a narrow-wooded walkway and into a dimly lit car park. It was here they spoke freely.

‘Have you the lodgements separated?’ asked Jacob.

‘Yes,’ replied Donny.

Vincent nodded. Jacob scrutinised the youngsters. ‘There’s no happy ending if you play the gangster. Do you understand?’

They looked at each other. This was old ground.

‘We’ll be careful, boss,’ said Vincent.

‘Lodge it in small amounts to all accounts. Nobody minds £5,000. They do mind £50,000.’

 ‘Not a problem,’ said Donny.

Jacob read their faces. They were good lads, quiet and careful in their deliberations. That was rare. 

‘Well done, boys. You were very professional today.’

They beamed at his words. 

When they left, Jacob scanned the CCTV in the car park. It had been disabled. He opened the door to his car and drove towards Essex.


Essex had the unique capability of keeping London at bay. Many of London’s middle classes wanted a respite from the hustle of their working lives, and Essex with its sprawling coastline and quaint villages was the perfect retreat. The train station at Basildon added to the attraction for London’s blue-collar workers. Over seventy percent of Essex was rural, which suited Jacob. He disappeared into respectability and showed no appetite to leave anytime soon.

Jacob Boylan was thirty-seven years old. He was a little less than six feet tall, with dirty blond hair, and dark green eyes. He had a small scar on his chin, just above a deep purple birthmark. His knuckles were badly callused, and his hands were criss-crossed with ugly scars. Jacob retained a good bulk of his weight and carried it in the right proportions.

He’d arrived in Essex two years ago after a hasty robbery. It was a period of overdue sobriety. There were no supports, no interventions, and no friends who plucked him from the gutter. He’d simply reached a decision. The pain was no longer numbed with alcohol, so he decided to cope without it. If he was to suffer, he would do so in relative comfort. 

For close to two years, Jacob had begged on the streets and survived on the generosity of soup kitchens. Intermittently, he encountered volunteers who patrolled the pavements with a hot meal and a warm smile. 

It had been five years since Jacob had lost his daughter in a gun attack in Dublin. An attack that was meant for him. They missed. But they didn’t. Jacob fell away as the world crumbled under his feet.

Revenge had been exacted, but the hole in his heart was too big to fill. Jacob drank himself into oblivion. After four suicide attempts, he could no longer cope with the pain in his wife’s eyes. He left Dublin and embraced the despair of London’s destitute… 

About the Author
Jonathan Dunne is a native of Dublin’s north inner city. This is his second novel in the crime genre. He is also an avid sports journalist who has penned articles for some of Ireland’s biggest publications. 

Jonathan returned to school at 21 to complete his schooling. He holds a Degree from the Dublin Institute of Technology and is a strong advocate of lifelong learning and education. Jonathan also holds a 1st Degree Black Belt in Tae Kwondo and is currently a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu student. He lives in Dublin with his wife and two children.

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