How It’s New York: New York is the setting for the novel; Pete Hamill is the quintessential New Yorker.
How It’s Irish: Hamill is American-Irish, and his protagonist, Sam Briscoe, is half-Irish, half-Jewish, one of the famed Jirish.
...If you, like grizzly old me, get a frisson imagining typewriter-filled newsrooms with Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman, or Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell snapping at each like a two-finger typist on crack, then you’ll enjoy it….
“Voices balloons are rising over the city, some large, others tiny, hundreds of them, many millions of others just suggested, all saying likelikelikelikelikelikelikelikelikelike … One four letter word blurring the city’s soundtrack, part of the pasty verbal mush, and on the splash page it’s crowding the sky among the many towers.”
“I tried to explain to him, Dad, I don’t want to be rich, I don’t want to be famous, I want to be good. And he said, Why can’t you be good at something like banking?”