Tony Cavalucci is a New York City police officer fighting for his life. The crime and corruption he sees on the job combined with a failing family life leave Tony feeling drained, lost, and frightfully alone, causing him to look for happiness in all the wrong places. Just when he is about to give up, Tony is partnered with Joe Fiore, another Italian-American cop who exudes the strength and confidence that Tony has been searching for. Though wary of his new partner, Tony finds that the day-to-day toils of his job force him to swallow his pride and look to Fiore for help. Writing with grit, freshness, and authenticity, authors Frank and Pam Lione, born-and-bred native New Yorkers themselves, bring to life the loneliness that haunts even New York’s finest.
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In New York City, Times Square is known as the crossroads of the world. It’s where everyone comes to ring in the New Year-the good and the bad, the beautiful and the gritty . . . and the NYPD. But for Tony Cavalucci, an NYPD cop, the holiday season means long hours and little sleep. Instead of joining the countdown, Tony finds himself trapped between his feuding family and his new girlfriend, Michele. After a terrible family fight, Tony runs head on into his struggle against alcohol and wonders if taking a drink would solve all his problems. Or is there another way? Will his family come around or does continuing his relationship with Michele mean giving up on the people he loves? As edgy as life on the streets, The Crossroads, book two in the Midtown Blue series, follows the continuing struggle of one rugged cop.
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The NYPD has a name for the perps who live on the streets. They are called skells, people who cause trouble for cops trying to keep the peace. Night after night of run-ins with the skells takes its toll on NYPD cop Tony Cavalucci, who’s just trying to see them as people who need compassion. But with his co-workers mocking his newfound caring attitude, Tony is finding it hard to keep up with a job that too often drags him down. Meanwhile, Tony finds little solace from his family, which is at war with itself, creating wounds that will be hard to heal. Seeing the mess his family has become, Tony’s determined not to make the same mistakes. But after he learns of events from his father’s past, will Tony change his perspective? Book 3 in the Midtown Blue series, Skells combines grit with an unexpectedly engaging vulnerability to make this story of a rugged cop a captivating read.
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Clear Blue Sky (Book 4)
It’s the beginning of a gorgeous September in the City that Never Sleeps. Summer may be officially over, but Labor Day Weekend means ethnic festivals and dancing the streets and lots of overtime for police officer Tony Cavalucci.
When crowd control gets unusually dangerous, Tony starts to wonder why he even does this kind of work. And going home doesn’t bring him any more respect. His neurotic and dramatic family disapproves of both Tony’s fiancé and his new-found faith.
And then September 11 changes everything.
Now Tony finds himself in brand new territory. As he fights to survive and help others survive as well, he learns all over what faith, family, and life itself mean.
A fast-paced and deeply moving page-turner that is at times funny, at times horrible, and always full of humanity, compassion, and the presence of God. The Liones offer their very best work in Clear Blue Sky.
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CKN: Who started writing first?
F.P. Lione: I did. It was during a time of great sadness. Frank and I found ourselves in a place that life could not have prepared us for. We had experienced something so difficult and life changing, that it affected every area of our life. It was one of those things that showed you who your friends were, who you could count on, what people really thought of us, and tested us in every way. A parent’s nightmare. It was in this brokenness that I needed something to take my mind off all the bad that happened and focus on something positive. I was praying and the thought just came to me to start writing. I had never written before, except for advocacy letters for victims through an outreach in Manhattan. But my letters always got attention, and the writing was very easy for me. When I told Frank I wanted to write a book about cops and asked him if he would help me, he jumped right in. He’s a visionary Frank, but mostly he said it was good to see me animated, and not so sad. At that point, he just wanted his family to heal and thought the writing could be a start.
CKN: How did the two of you decide to start writing together?
FP: At first, he said it was great, that I should write the book, and I said, no, us, together…He said that he didn’t write, and came on first as consulting with police and procedure, things like that. But Frank is incredibly insightful about people and human nature, I guess that’s what made him such a great cop. He always saw what motivated people, whether it was crime, or addiction or homelessness. He reads people very well. It didn’t take him long to get on board, it was easy for him to draw from his experiences at the NYPD and after that we were on our way.
CKN: Tell us a bit about the writing process from start to finish.
FP: For our first novel, Frank was working crazy hours in Anti-crime and I had just left my job at a hospital in Brooklyn to be with our children. We didn’t want them with babysitters and I really needed to be home at the time. We worked from a small outline, main story points, broken down into numbered chapters with corresponding topic for that chapter and we pretty much stuck with that. I would do the research and the interviewing of people. When Frank came home from work after we took a walk and talked about our day I would go over what I wrote and record what I would be writing the next day. We developed the story together and moved it forward day by day. It went really quick, a lot quicker than I would have thought. We still write pretty much the same. At this point we’ve written five novels together and I’ve written two more on my own.
CKN: Do you ever disagree on the storyline or details? If so how do you move forward?
FP: We did at first. Frank tends to over detail and got concerned if something was perfect in detail. But this is fiction and sometimes when I look at our early stuff I cringe at how long winded it can be LOL. After a while he just trusted my instincts. As far as what we are writing about, what we do is yield to whichever one of us knows the most about the topic.
CKN: How do your family and friends feel about the two of you being a writing team?
FP: A lot of our friends don’t know we write together and I guess would be surprised to hear it. We don’t talk about it a lot. Our children are used to us writing. They love it and think it’s awesome. They love how we work together, our older son says, “mixing a street cop with a refined author.” They tell their friends about us. When my cousin’s husband found out we wrote and looked up our books, he was surprised and impressed, he couldn’t believe the reviews and that we had written so many books!