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25 Reviews (Including 3 Editorial Reviews)
Goodreads 4.08 Star rating
(39 ratings - 2 reviews)
Ratings Details:

Amazon 4.2 Star rating
(23 customer ratings)

Editorial Reviews are listed first.
Reader reviews follow in chronological order, beginning with the most recent.
Reviews are also listed by star rating.


Editorial Reviews:

—by Authors Reading on May 30, 2018

Fictionalizing political legends that are still alive is risky business in more ways than one. In this case  Beleaguered Truth - Book II: The Shattered Triangle Trilogy is the continuation of the stories surrounding twin brothers, Giuseppe and Giovanni Lozano, and Detective Tom Moran. It's a book about family loyalty, political aspirations, secrets, passion, and bloodshed. The first book was Tom Moran's story of the beginning of their friendship and the horrible murder of Giuseppe's wife and children. Beleaguered Truth is told my Giuseppe Lozano a driven politician who has been elected to the Senate. The camaraderie that once existed between him and his brother Giovanni has soured. Giovanni, who is a priest, had accepted hearing a very unsettling confession from his brother Giuseppe. The contents of the confession sickened him It was hard for him to reconcile that brother, his twin, was so unconscionable and devious. Also, in this book Author Messenger writes himself into the story as his former self, Fr. Bill Messenger, a priest. He is the director of the Catholic Center at USC and a close friend of Fr. Giovanni Lozano.

This book mirrors the events of the Bush Administration, and Senator Giuseppe becomes a major player in the Washington scene. He meets with President Bush and realizes his political value to Bush and decides to capitalize on it.

The 9/11 attacks occur and "Beleaguered Truth" weaves the three main characters into the chaos that ensued. Each one will have his own part in combatting terrorists, America's new insidious enemy.

Junior Senator Lozano is invited into a secretive political clique operating at the highest level that included Vice President Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Elliott Abrams, John Bolton, Michael Ledeen, Scooter Libby, Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Perle, Paul Bremer and more of the elite. Giuseppe was thrilled with his inclusion in this group even if some of them appeared to not really trust him.

The attacks on 9/11 gave Det. Tom Moran a new start with his stagnated career. He was offered a job with the newly created Counter Terrorism Criminal Intelligence Bureau (CTCIB).

In another parallel thread, Senator Lozano struggles with the loss and emptiness he feels since the murder of his wife and children. He is also concerned that he might be gay. He realizes the depth of these feelings when he encounters an old friend of his who is in a gay relationship. Soon thereafter, a new murder is introduced into the story which bears a lot of similarities to the murders of the Senator's family. The new murder provides clues that just might help solve the first murder more completely. Suddenly a lot of events take place in the lives of Giuseppe and Giovanni Lozano, and Detective Tom Moran. Will the new murder really help solve the Lozano family massacre? Will justice finally be served? Will Senator Lozano come to terms with his sexual proclivities? William P. Messenger pens another medley of fiction and reality blending them together so tightly that it is often hard to know what is real and what is taken from his imaginary world. "Beleaguered Truth" is a page-turning, complex, disturbingly readable book of incredible ambition and scope.


—by Maxy Awards
"Book two in an intense thriller series with strong political characters and an underlying impact."


—Beleaguered Truth, a Political Thriller by William P. Messenger
September 13, 2016 by Bella Wright
in Crime Book Thrillers, New Book Releases, Police Procedural Books,
Thriller Book Reviews, Thriller Reviews

The Bottom Line: The second entry in William P. Messenger's Shattered Triangle Series is a hard-hitting political thriller that deftly blends fact and fiction.

Beleaguered Truth begins where Messenger's Shattered Triangle leaves off, with an expanded first-person confession of the crime that was the focus of the first book in the series. Core characters Senator Giuseppe Lozano, Father Giovanni Lozano and Lieutenant Tom Moran are back, but this time they area also joined by larger than life historical figures. It's the year 200, and members of President George W. Bush's administration are present in full force, including chief of staff Andrew Card and Vice President Dick Cheney. Even controversial southern senator Robert Byrd makes an appearance.

Fictionalizing political legends that are still alive is risky business in more ways than one. In this case, they serve as foil for the political ambitions of Giuseppe Lozano, which appear to go far beyond being one of 100 members of the Unites States Senate. If
Shattered Triangle is Tom's story, then Beleaguered Truth is the senator's. Much like TV's House of Cards, Messenger's second book is less about the strains of friendship than Lozano's sociopathic thirst for power.

Lozano's aggressive political style is highly entertaining, featuring blow after blow of backroom maneuvering. However, because readers are likely to bring a lifetime worth of biases about the real-life political figures Messenger includes among his cast, he risks the dilution of his original character, Giuseppe Lozano. For readers, the net effect will depend completely on how closely they followed politics in the 1990s and 2000s. Hardcore political addicts may have themselves dissecting every nuance of his historical portrayals, while those that followed the news of that era only casually may find themselves more fully immersed in the book's ambitious plot.


Reader Reviews:

★★ 2.0 out of 5 stars
November 7, 2019 by Amazon Customer

Boring and not much of a story that interests me. Do not recommend this book to anyone it would not be right

5.0 out of 5 stars
Great Book
June 29, 2019 by Anne Clark

Excellent book, very will written.

5.0 out of 5 stars
Beleaguered Truth
March 1, 2019 by Christmas Angel

Great characters and a great follow-up to Mr. Messenger's first book. This is the second book in a trilogy that I know I won't want to see end. It has all the intrigue found in book one. Although fiction, there are history lessons to be learned. It will make politics, mystery and murder all too real and all too scary.

5.0 out of 5 stars
Excellent use of fiction to analyze modern America
September 9, 2018 by Kenneth G. Sherwood III

Great story. Excellent commentary on American politics.

5.0 out of 5 stars
As good as the first in the series
January 27, 2018 by Sideliner

Exceptional mixing of fact and fiction. Political insight, character depth and a wonderful plot development. Words such as devious, calculating, complex are apt. All presented in a commendable literary form, with a rich vocabulary wherein each word speaks with exactly the right emphasis.

5.0 out of 5 stars
Just as exciting as the previous book
May 3, 2017 by Jerry K

After reading the first book in the series, I was so excited to read the second. Again, it as hard to put down. I love the three main characters and how each book is from one perspective. Now I have to wait for the third….it's going to be hard!

4.0 out of 5 stars
Solid middle piece to the series…can't wait to read the final installment
April 5, 2017 by E. Ong

Strong expectations following the first installment of this series. Story telling and context is as good as the first. The character development is quite good in this novel, and probably the best of what this book offers. Quite creative having the second novel from another perspective of one of the three main characters. As other reviewer mentioned, while the pace of the book is steady, the action is limited. It's definitely a set up piece to the next book. Can't wait to see what comes next. In the era of binging I'll appreciate the anticipation of last installment of this trilogy.

1.0 out of 5 stars
All Background…No Story
April 4, 2017 by Paul

The premise was intriguing, but the story went nowhere. Tedious details about the Bush years and politics, but in the end you were left with the mystery and conundrum began with. No resolutions to the original conflicts whatsoever. Maybe it resolves in book 2 but I will not take a chance.

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
Along the way a good many questions are asked leaving you still looking for ...
October 20, 2016 by David D.

"Beleaguered Truth", was a compelling read for me. It drew me in without being obvious about it. Before I knew it, I was three or four chapters in and found it difficult to put down. Its characters were well thought out and fit together perfectly. "Beleaguered Truth", is a story that wove its way through characters and location seemingly. The worlds of law enforcement, congress and the Catholic church weave themselves in a story of family, murder and moral dilemma. Along the way a good many questions are asked leaving you still looking for some answers. It is a great setup for a sequel.

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
September 26, 2016 by Amazon Customer (verified purchase)

Great Book

4.0 out of 5 stars
Truths we are unwilling to face
September 9, 2016 by Frank Gonzalez

Yes, I agree with all the previous reviews. The pace of this book is much better than that of its predecessor, and the plot development keeps more reader interest. But this book cannot stand alone without knowing the plot of the first book of the trilogy, "Shattered Triangle." The author continues to weave a web of current historical occurrences into a contemporary framework that will cause the reader to rethink political beliefs and life values. In this reader's opinion, much of what has been exposed (as part of the plot) has been proved true. It was somewhat hidden, but, I believe, already known in the backs of our minds. So to me it is an accurate reflection of the current state of our country, and of life in general. I am appreciative that the author does not try to espouse his own views of how to correct the system as part of the plot (that would require and immense undertaking that would probably not result in any better system than what is in place now).

5.0 out of 5 stars
This second book in the trilogy build suspense and paves a perfect path for the final installment of the series
April 4, 2016 by Esteban Rael

William Messenger's sequel to
Shattered Triangle: A Consequential Murder is a captivating mystery that continues to follow the story of three childhood friends whose lives were dramatically altered by murder. Messenger weaves historic political facts and a Catholic spirituality into this intriguing novel told from the view of a newly elected U.S. Senator. Set in the early 21st century, this novel delves into the human psyche, exploring motives, decisions, and consequences set against the backdrop of the September 11th attacks on the United States. This second book in the trilogy builds suspense and paves a perfect path for the final installment of the series, which I await with great anticipation!

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
Exciting Story
March 2, 2016 by Candy

I really enjoyed this book. The characters are very complex; many twists and turns. I did not enjoy the political bent of the author but I still enjoyed the story. Waiting for the next series!

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
December 28, 2015 by Jonathan

Messenger is gratuitous with his ability to mesmerize the reader with a complex story that intertwines one's own thoughts into the story. The pages practically turn themselves, developing each character as the storyline continues, resulting in a mature book that surprises and delights.

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
William Messenger does not disappoint in his second novel
December 10, 2015 by Cecelia Burks

William Messenger does not disappoint in this second novel.
Beleaguered Truth carried on where Shattered Triangle left off. At the end of book one it was evident who ordered the murders and how they were carried out. In the second book of his trilogy Messenger has explored how each of the main characters is trying to cope and to what lengths they must go just to try and find some semblance of inner peace. This is not an easy task. I am looking forward to the final book to see if evil will have the proper consequence…at least in my mind.

★★★★ 4.0 out of 5 stars
In-depth description with vivid imagery, creating a spellbinding story…
December 20, 2015 by Caroline Van der Linden

In-depth descriptions with vivid imagery, creating a spellbinding story that keeps you guessing. I am looking forward to the next book.

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
Page Turner!
November 14, 2015 by P.A. Lach

Did you ever read a book v e r y slowly because you didn't want it to end?

Well damn, I just finished
Beleaguered Truth, the 2nd book of the Shattered Triangle Trilogy and book three isn't ready yet!

Senator Giuseppe Lozano re-caps and sets the reader on track to continue following his career and now troubled relationships with his twin—Father Gio—and longtime-no-longer friend, Lt. Tom Moran. These three struggle with values and core beliefs universal in the angst that these create in anyone of us.

The skillful interweaving of true historic events into this work of fiction gave this reader further insights into those events. Conversations are natural; some of the narrative is positively lyrical in places. Best of all are the cliff hangers—for me the biggest is on page 118. Get the book and see if you don't agree!

★★★★★ 5.0 out of 5 stars
Engaging and thought provoking mix of fact and fiction….
November 14, 2015 by Joe in Central America

I found this second book of the trilogy to be even more engaging than the first. The author weaves the characters and events into historical events in our recent history in a way that both gives great depth to the underlying drama and prompts the reader to reconsider their understanding of our own political history. The book also gives a perspective of complex interaction between the political, social and moral spheres that shape our daily lives. I enjoyed putting myself in the shoes of the various characters who are forced to deal with the burden of knowledge without proof. Just like in the first book, this one is extremely well researched, yet is written in a way that reads easily. Time really flew by as I read this book! I highly recommend
Beleaguered Truth!

5.0 out of 5 stars
Wisdom between the lines!!
November 9, 2015 by George A. Jenkins

In this second book Bill Messenger brings forth a knowledge of history that is twisted into a tale of good and evil that if read between the lines contains wisdom about all mankind. Bill's mixing of the real and the spiritual world we all exist in is presented in such a manner that we can all see how humans are not as they appear in their worldly uniform but rather a mixture of all that the world has known of good and evil since the beginning of man's existence on the earth. This novel is a lesson in the human soul and how even those closest to us are not aware of the true self that we carry behind the veil of our humanly body. I can't wait for Bill's third book to see if good wins over evil or if, as it has been since the beginning of mankind, those with the greatest knowledge of the human ego win out in the end.

5.0 out of 5 stars
This 2nd book, is written in a slightly different way…
November 8, 2015 by Gilbert & Sullivan

This 2nd book is written in a slightly different way than the first. The climax is elusive through the whole thing to reach it in the last few chapters. I thought of it as a literary coitus interrupts and crave for the third book already. The mingling of fiction and reality and the depth of the main characters makes me wish this was turned into a TV series.

★★★★ 4.0 out of 5 stars
Messenger has created a truly sociopathic, monster of a character
November 6, 2015 by Nicholas Santillan

Following the aftermath of the murders, election results, and sinister revelation in 2014's
Shattered Triangle: A Consequential Murder, author William Messenger dives deeper into the psyche of his characters in book two of his trilogy, Beleaguered Truth. Each of his primary characters is beleaguered by their discoveries and actions from the first book—Giuseppe Lozano, in his self-imposed isolation, is now a U.S. Senator scheming his way up the political ladder; Giovanni Lozano, a Catholic priest whose struggle with the Seal of Confession is taking its physical and mental toll; and Tom Moran, who is piecing his life and career together after failing to apprehend the killer.

While the first novel was a traditional mystery novel as told from the detective's perspective,
Truth is more of a political drama told from the senator's perspective with Machiavellian insights into Washington's political intrigue and events leading up to 9/11 and the Iraq War. Switching narrators is a smart move on Messenger's part as the first novel clearly established the Lozanos and Moran as having deeply interconnected lives. The narrative deftly weaves real life into these characters, from Giuseppe's encounters with Dick Cheney and Senator Byrd to Giovanni's involvement in the Los Angeles religious community (complete with fictional counterparts to real life people) and Tom's recruitment with a counter terrorism task force.

At times, the novel can be a little preachy, especially when it comes to discussing the justification for waging war on Iraq—Giuseppe discusses with his confidante and Giovanni debates with members of his religious circle—but, Messenger is well versed in the topic and it is smartly written.

Similar to the previous novel, Messenger gets caught up in many tiny details. Although it's easy to skim over, it is in these meticulous details where Giuseppe's villainy shines. Messenger has created a truly sociopathic, monster of a character, whose narration is completely unreliable. Am I being manipulated? What is this guy really up to? Does he really want to pursue the presidency? Why? Does he really miss his family? And we are left to speculate in the dark along with the other characters about a new set of suspicious murders.

I'm looking forward to seeing the priest's perspective in Messenger's upcoming third novel.

5.0 out of 5 stars
A great read!
November 3, 2015 by Joan

Bill is a very good writer and I love this second book.


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