Jukebox-Book Review

 

51CK3idTEbL__AC_SY220_jukeboxTitle: Jukebox

Author: Saira Viola

Genre: Crime Fiction

Rating: 5 out of 5

Blurb: A rookie lawyer, crime mogul and junior reporter all converge in London’s underworld of glamour, crime and greed. Set in a city rocked by corruption and tabloid excess, one of them is going to learn that sometimes in life you get more than you bargained for.

Fast-paced satirical crime thriller.

Straight from the land of tea and crumpets and with crunchy, punchy—point, counterpoint stylized English prose Author Saira Viola takes you on a deliciously seedy journey into the world of London’s underbelly.

From its outrageously profane opening this story grabs you by the neck and it doesn’t let go. Peppered with pop-culture references and a gallery of characters you will not soon forget (hey Mimi—call me darling) the story moves along to the beat of a too-cool-for-school soundtrack hence the tittle of the book, and I do concur with the jab at Simon Cowell; that punter destroyed the musical landscape with his shameless promotion of banal pop, and also kudos for the uppercut at certain celebs who became ‘stars’ just by doing a triple xxx feature. There’s also a stab at the Rolling Stones for stealing the blues and making a living at it for almost a century.

This is cool and dangerous Britannia, buddy, strap-on for a hell of a ride as this book has all the hallmarks of a great read: Grit, wit and style to burn.

So, what you waiting for lad? Grab a cuppa and go read Jukebox.

*  *  *

I’m not a book reviewer nor am I hoping to become one.I’m only reviewing books that I choose to read so don’t ask me to review your book I DON’T DO THAT, sorry.

*  *  *

Criminal Tune Time

“Machine Gun Blues”  by Social Distortion. A song written from a gangster’s perspective.

 

Well I’m a gangster 1934
Junkies, wino’s, pimps and whores
And all you men, women and kids, let’s get out the way
I just left your town, took all your loot
Bought a pink carnation and a pinstripe suit
A hopped up V8 Ford and some two toned shoes

And I’m already gone,
I left a pool of blood and sorrow
I got the machine gun blues

I’ll be out of here before the break of dawn
I hit the highway, smoke a big cigar
I gotta stop and burry the cash and get some more
There’s only one thing on my mind
And that’s making it across that ol’ state line
But there’s a hail of avenging bullets
Waiting there for me

And I’m already gone,
I left a path of pure destruction
I’ve got the machine gun blues
Already gone,
My life will soon be through
I’ve got the machine gun blues

Well, I’m public enemy number one
I’m sorry for all the things I’ve done
If indeed we do cross paths,
It’s nothing personal

And I’m already gone,
I left a trail of devastation
I’ve got the machine gun blues
Already gone,
My life will soon be through
I’ve got the machine gun blues.

Lyrics from SongMeanings.com

 

Conmen—Book Review

51dbRDPZT+L._SY373_BO1,204,203,200_The art of the con operates on the simple premise that there’s a sucker born every minute. A successful conman can charm all four legs of a horse by simply telling people what they want to hear. If you enjoy the guilty pleasure of reading the true life stories of grafters and their ilk, then get your paws on The Ten Greatest Conmen written by a couple of  Englishmen by the name of Roger Cook and Tim Tate whom—according to their bio—have spent at least thirty years exposing crooks, cons and villains.

These are the fascinating true stories of men with extremely wonky moral compasses.

Take for instance the story of a Frenchman who tried to sell the Eifel Tower for scrap metal, then there’s the semi-literate ex-car salesman who made a mint convincing people that he was an agent of the British secret service. My personal favorite is about the guy who sold to none other than press titan Rupert Murdoch, a pair of shoes supposedly last worn by Jimmy Hoffa.

Did you ever take one of the many ‘lose weight’ supplements that invade the airwaves these days? Remember TRIMit? How about Bai Lin Tea? That’s the story of a chap hailing from Australia’s Gold Coast who made a fortune out of the gullibility and insecurity of people from Australia, England and America. Incredibly this scumbag celebrated his 40th birthday at 10 Downing Street.

From offshore banking buccaneers to real estate salesmen selling land that only exist in their imagination, these are fascinating stories. But the thing that boggles the mind though is the fact that some of these guys kept getting away with it simply because, for some bizarre reason, most governments see a con as a ‘lesser crime’ or because the victims of these conmen were too ashamed to admit that they’ve got taken.

I’ve been meaning to read this book for a while now, finished it in one sitting, and although the book is a good read, I got to say that it leans heavily on British slant, some slang—not too much, some inside jokes and whatnot. Overall the stories feel a bit dated as most took place in a pre-internet era, and they tend to be a bit convoluted especially the ones dealing with the banking industry, then again I’m not banker so…

My take -away? There’s a sucker born every minute indeed.

*

I’m not a book reviewer nor am I hoping to become one. I’m only reviewing books that I choose to read so don’t ask me to review your book I DON’T DO THAT, sorry.

*

Old Head Looks Good.

Walking down on 14 street. I saw this beauty the other day. It’s either a 1948 Plymouth RMP “white top” with POLICE roof light (I lean strongly toward this one) or it’s a 1946-48 Plymouth “business coupe” RMP. It was probably a prototype? I say this because I notice the 1940’s NYC world fair plate.

I’m digging the on- board phone from a time when there were no stinking smartphones anywhere near a cop car.

For more info  policeny.com 

Happy 4th of July!

Nose To The Grindstone

typewriter-159878_960_720

Image Credit: OpenClipart-vectors/pixabay.com

BAM! Just like that 41,017 words so far. Desperados is the name of my new project, it started out as a short story ooh, about two or three years ago. I always felt that I had a lot more to say about the fictional character in the form of Honduran migrant Julio Roman—they’ll be outlaws a-plenty.

The story begins with a tattered Julio inside of a stash house in Arizona, where he ended up after being handed- over to a couple of sadistic lunatics who work for a cartel. Along his ride into the U. S. he meets a plethora of sociopaths and all sorts of other colorful characters, all reaching for a piece of the American (dream) pie. It’s going to be a thrill ride to read because it’s been a thrill ride to write. The research has been interesting, and enlightening. Needless to say I’ve learn a lot and hopefully so will the reader.

I don’t write every day—I really, really wish I did (what writer doesn’t right?), but life has a way of getting in the way, of yanking me out of my half-life as a writer.  I must admit though that starting this blog has helped a bunch, because it’s forcing me write more. Speaking of which (get ready to be happy) I’m going to start a new segment slash page call True Crime, in which I’ll dribble my condense take on a particular real life criminal, crime or criminals. I’ll try to anchor the segments on characters, I’ll try to keep things light by peppering the pieces with my world famous witty repartee (can’t guaranteed success on that one simply because we’ll be talking about some real shit and I don’t wish to come across as trivializing matters.) I’m compiling some stories at the moment so— keep an eye out for it.

Desperados will be my first novel. The idea came to me while reminiscing about what happened to me- oh, I’ll say a good twenty- odd years ago, when I got bamboozled by a cousin of mine into working crop fields in the state of Georgia (long-ass, boring story, only good thing about it was the lovely Georgia peach I met down there. Hey Nicole! Holla for a dolla) I ended up a bracero picking onions, cucumbers and tobacco leaves. I remember those leaves being toxic as fuck, those things were a nightmare, plus you had to ‘be on the lookout for rattlesnakes.’ While a field the size of a football stadium waited to be picked, at temperatures reaching 95 degrees (this at 9 in the morning). Fun times.

Anyway imagine that, my first novel. I’m nervous as fuck about it. But I’m also thrilled at the prospect. I still have a long way to go, 41,071 words are only the first draft and I’m hoping to hit the 50,000+ words mark, or somewhere around that neighborhood (making it a short novel) I’ll post updates on here whenever possible, but as far as I’m concern it’s in the bag baby. It’s been a tough process but I’m loving it. I just hope folks dig it. As a writer is the only thing you can hope for.

Okay that’s it. Pen to paper, nose to the grindstone. Smell ya later!