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Dante Pirelli thought the timing could not have been better to get out of town and spend a week in Maui at the oceanfront condo he owned on Kaanapali Beach. For days all the local media could talk about was the potentially record-breaking heat about to hit Southern California. Temperatures in downtown Los Angeles were expected to soar above a hundred, and out on the western edge of the San Fernando Valley where Pirelli lived it would probably be ten to fifteen degrees hotter.
An added benefit was that Vyna, his beautiful young trophy wife, was excited about getting away, too. That meant there could be lots of sex on the holiday agenda. Vyna had been suffering with a bad case of the blues lately, but when she was in a good mood she could be a real tiger in bed.
Just as the stretch limousine arrived that would take him and his family to the airport, Pirelli gave a final briefing to Maria Rojas, the young woman he was leaving behind in charge of his sprawling, Tuscan-style estate.
“Remember, always keep ice in the dog’s bowl. And make sure you’re here for the gardeners and pool man. Any problems with anything you got the numbers to call.”
“Yes, sir,” Maria nodded with a nervous smile. Although confident, she could handle everything expected of her she was anxious about being left alone in such a big, fancy house. Still, she was going to be paid double her normal salary and Mr. Pirelli had said she could use any of the home’s resort-like amenities, including an amazing circular pool with a cascading waterfall and thirty-foot water slide.
Six days into her stay Maria’s only real challenge had been coping with the boredom. Outside of taking care of Mrs. Pirelli’s needy French Pug and dealing with the regularly scheduled service people, there had been very little to do. As predicted, the scorching weather the Spanish press was calling Los Días de Infierno had arrived with a vengeance. It was so hot during the day she rarely went outside, and she soon got tired of watching non-stop telenovelas. All the idle time made her realize how much she missed her regular routine at Mr. Pirelli’s film company. She liked how busy it always was and how the hours just seemed to fly by. Work—like prayer—kept her from worrying about her recent troubles.
The book, featuring a bilingual and bicultural private eye named Paco Moran, centers around Moran’s desperate search for a beautiful young Latina immigrant who stole ten million dollars from the mob. In a pre-publication review American Book Award winner Peter Quinn said: "Paco Moran’s debut in Michael O'Hara's Dos Angeles is fast-paced, finely crafted, and full of surprises. It's noir fiction for the 21st century, a helluva ride from the first page to last. Here's hoping O'Hara brings Paco back very soon. I can't wait!"
A former award-winning journalist and NBC Vice President of Media Relations, O’Hara made an auspicious debut as a writer/producer with “Those She Left Behind,” a critically acclaimed family drama that continues to be the highest-rated TV movie (25.1/38 share) on any network in over twenty years. It starred Gary Cole and Colleen Dewhurst (who won an Emmy Award for her performance). That success was followed by the widely praised NBC movie “She Said No” which won an American Women in Radio & Television Award for Best Television Dramatic Special.
O’Hara next wrote and executive produced “Switched at Birth,” the blockbuster NBC miniseries that earned an Emmy nomination as Best Dramatic Special and remains the highest rated (22 rating/33 share) miniseries on network television since its initial telecast over two decades ago. He was also the writer and executive producer of “Murder in the Heartland,” a celebrated ABC miniseries which garnered a Casting Society of America Award and two Emmy nominations. Right after that he created and executive produced the first of 22 “Moment of Truth” movies for NBC, establishing one of the most successful film franchises in TV history.
O’Hara also wrote “She Woke Up Pregnant,” the pilot for ABC’s ‘Crimes of Passion’ franchise. It scored an impressive 13.4 rating and 21 share, making it the highest-rated ABC movie of the year. He went on to write “One Hot Summer Night,” another ‘Crimes of Passion’ thriller that was ABC’s highest-rated Thursday night movie of the season. Other producing credits include two CBS projects: “Twilight Zone – Rod Serling’s Lost Classics” and “A Child’s Wish,” which was filmed in the Oval Office and featured a cameo appearance by then President Bill Clinton. In addition he wrote and executive produced NBC’s “In His Life: The John Lennon Story” and “1st to Die,” a two-part NBC miniseries based on the best-selling novel by James Patterson.
Overall O’Hara has produced four miniseries and 33 Movies of the Week. Besides his Emmy nomination, other honors include: a Christopher Award (“A Child’s Wish”); a Prism Award (“The Accident”); a Humanitas Award nomination (“Heart of a Child”); a National Easter Seal Society Award (“To Walk Again”); an International Health & Medical Film Award (“Heart of a Child”); and the Media Award from The National Council on Problem Gambling (“Playing to Win.”)
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