Book Reviews

Book Review: “Live to Air” by Jeffrey L. Diamond

   Publication Date : June 9, 2015 

I have received this book for free via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influences my thoughts or opinion of the book. 

Summary from NetGalley:
Television, politics, and the Russian mob: Live to Air is a riveting crime thriller, jam-packed with intrigue and unforgettable characters. Ethan Benson is a charming and principled-if sometimes difficult-television producer in New York City who detests doing crime stories. But that’s of no significance to his high-powered boss at the network, and Benson finds himself assigned to investigating a bloody shoot-out in the Meatpacking District, whose old grime and new glitz provide a symbolic background for a sensational murder that has dominated the headlines. As he pieces together his story, Benson literally covers New York-from Central Park and Fifth Avenue to Little Russia in Brooklyn and Rikers Island in Queens-crossing paths with a fascinating cast of characters on both sides of the law. Unknown to Benson, organized crime may be only one facet of the thrilling investigation. With his wife and son in hiding and his life in danger, Benson draws closer to a resolution that will have explosive results for the criminals-and for some members of New York City’s political elite as well.


I really believe that Jeffrey L. Diamond’s experience in the journalism world has really leveraged this novel in a positive way – the whole book bleeds with his knowledge of his faced-paced career. If you’ve read previous book reviews from me, then you know I love a great mystery/thriller novel – and “Live to Air” is one of them! Faced-paced, original, captivating, interesting, and unpredictable are some adjectives I like to use when describing this novel. 

“Live to Air” had me hooked right from the beginning, all the way until the end. Even with Diamond’s little Q&A at the end, and his biography, I was hanging on to every word, he has an amazing resume that any journalist would die to have. 


As a student, I’ve been taught that when writing anything, either the plot will be amazing, or the characters will be amazing – you can’t have the best of both worlds. With that being said, my instincts tell me that this is a character-driven story – you really get to experience everything that the characters do, and personally the plot wasn’t intricate or complicated. It was a classic plot line with exceptional characters that made it interesting. 

Final Grade:

Easily, 9/10. Althought the characters were spot on, and the emotional response I got from this book (I read it twice, which is why I took a while to post up this review), I still HATE how the mobsters were handled near the end of the book (if you’re curious what happens, well you just have to get the book and read for yourself!). I’m super excited for more books by Jeffrey L. Diamond, and I hope he sticks with more crime thriller novels, because seriously, this guy has talent and the experience required to write books like this. 

Will those who tend not to read crime thriller/mystery novels dislike this book? It’s hard to say. Part of me wants everyone to love this book, but I know if you’re not a fan of this genre, then chances are you might not like it. But if reading a crime thriller is on your “Summer Reading List”, then why not start with “Live to Air”? It’s a pretty good story line, with mobsters planted right in the middle of it. I mean, who wouldn’t love that, right? 

If you’ve read this book, what did you think? And are you guys going to put this one your reading lists? Let me know! 


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