“An intimate look at a life lived as a lie” — Kirkus Reviews
The Wrong Road Home by Ian A. O'Connor is a story of treachery and deceit inspired by true events. It’s the larger-than-life story of a surgeon who successfully practiced his craft for 20 years—first in Ireland and then the United States—girded with nothing more than a Chicago School System GED and several counterfeit medical diplomas! Having a big sale, on-site celebrity, or other event? Be sure to announce it so everybody knows and gets excited about it.
Impossible, is undoubtedly any reader’s initial reaction—and understandably so—but the tale is based on a Miami Herald Sunday Edition front page exposé that was the talk of South Florida two decades ago. Oprah’s producer pursued the impostor for weeks, as did Bill O’Reilly, then the host of Inside Edition.
The Wrong Road Home combines two cautionary tales. The first warns how a Faustian bargain once struck, allows for no turning back. Desmond Donahue's impossible dream of becoming a ‘doctor’ was indeed realized over time, and a ‘doctor’ he remained despite several close calls in the ensuing years. The second cautionary message details the terrible cost in human terms of a life lived alone; of having to forgo marriage and children; of never having a close friend; of having to keep everyone ever met at arm’s length so the day would never arrive where he would inadvertently expose the awful truth about himself.
The Wrong Road Home is reminiscent of Frank Abagnale’s often funny sometimes sad autobiography Catch Me If You Can and movie of the same name starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks.
"In this historical novel based on a true story, a man operates as a doctor in both the United States and Ireland, despite having only a GED and a handful of forged credentials. O'Connor's (The Barbarossa Covenant, 2015) novel straddles fiction and nonfiction, as he crafted much of it from documents from a real-life acquaintance. An intimate look at a life lived as a lie."
--- Kirkus Reviews
"The story of Desmond Donahue (not his real name) is so fascinating that I could hardly put it aside. O'Connor's story is so believable, one tends to overlook the fiction part."
Virginia Luger-- Bismark Tribune
"Fine entertainment filled with plenty of food for thought. Indeed, it's a lavish buffet."
Phil Jason, Ph.D. -- Florida Weekly
"If you like the book or the film Catch Me If You Can then this crime story about a lonely man on the run, afraid ever to make friends or allow himself to find love, might be for you."
Ryanan Cl G. Veave -- Scene Magazine
"Do the ends justify the means? Desmond Donahue would surely say no. His fascinating story is a lesson for us all."
Doug Gallogly -- Times of the Islands
"An impressively well written and inherently fascinating read from beginning to end, "The Wrong Road Home" showcases Ian A. O'Connor as a compelling, talented and exceptionally skillful author. Very highly recommended for community library collections."
John Burroughs -- Midwest Book Review"
"I highly recommend this book. It was fascinating and entertaining. Because it is based on a true story and a real person it has a depth that some novels lack. Personally, I cannot wait to read Ian A. O'Connor's other books both fiction and non-fiction."
Laura Hartman -- Writeknit
The Wrong Road Home based on the true story of Dr. Desmond Donahue captures readers from the first page.
Carol Hoyer -- Reader Views
Purchase at bookstores everywhere or order online-- Trade Paperback ($14.95) or Kindle Edition ($2.95)
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