Charlie's Books

Charlie's Books
Buon Giorno, Amici!

Our motto ...

Leave the (political) party. Take the cannoli.

"It always seems impossible until it's done." Nelson Mandela

Right now 6 Stella crime novels are available on Kindle for just $.99 ... Eddie's World has been reprinted and is also available from Stark House Press (Gat Books).

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

White House v. Fox … Two More Ripleys … Victory … 59-0 …and the DOC says ...


White House v. Fox ... oh, baby, are they kidding? Now look, I’m probably more liberal than most but to suggest the main street media is anything but friendly to the Obama administration is insane. Is Fox a Republican Rag? Yeah, but no more so than NBC, CBS, ABC and CNN are Democratic rags. Is Fox hard to watch? Well, I can’t watch two seconds of this idiot Glenn Beck, although I can watch (for the fun of it) crazy Bill O’Reilly when he goes off on a rant (safely from his studio—me thinks the guy is a big coward), but what about Keith Olbermann (and his resumed countdown since “the last President declared mission accomplished”—does he not feel it necessary to count the days since his Savior, President Obama, declared Iraq “the wrong war in the wrong place at the wrong time” yet still remains firmly in place there?), never mind Keitho’s ability to live in “special comment” denial. The so-called media has become something you take with a grain of salt, but the white house doing public battle with any network is insulting at this stage of the game. Has this Nobel Prize Winning genius nothing better to do?

Oh, right, the party of the people’s President of the people is hosting a $15 dime (thousand) a plate dinner this evening for his cronies on Wall Street. Or maybe he’s the crony (that always confuses me). It looks to me as though the new emperor is as naked as the last one. He’s been one big empty suit so far and so-called liberal Democrats continue to Bush bash while they continue to support a guy who stands on the same equal rights platform as Bush (against gay marriage), a guy who actually raised the villainous Blackwater budget above that which Bush gave them, continues the wrong war (etc.) in Iraq and increases troop size in Afghanistan (while getting Peace Prizes), and hasn’t signed a single piece of banking oversight legislation.

Yeah, right, change we can believe in. What I wanna know is when does MAD magazine use his mug on the cover?

Oh, cool ...

Ripley Under Ground ... book two in the series (of 5) was equal to the debut. The dark, somehow sympathetic, sociopathic Tom Ripley is a few years removed from his murder of Dickie Greenleaf and Freddie Miles. He’s married (rich) and although doing well enough for himself, he has a small percentage in the side business of art forgery. When an art aficionado figures out the scam, Tom tries a few different tricks to keep the buyer from blowing the whistle ... and when all else fails, Tom whacks him.

I have become such a fan of Patricia Highsmith’s work, I have gone and ordered books outside the Ripley series. The mark of great writers for me is their ability to sustain a high quality of product. Highsmith achieved that in spades within the series and I can’t help but assume she did so outside the world of Thomas Ripley.

How’s this for a Ripley Under Ground teaser:

A pair of flies, insane as usual, were annoying Tom. He pulled one out of his hair. They were zooming around his night table. Late for flies, and he’d had quite enough of them this summer. The French countryside was famous for its variety of flies, which outnumbered the variety of cheeses, Tom had read somewhere. One fly jumped on the other’s back. In plain view! Quickly Tom struck a match and held it to the bastards. Wings sizzled. Buzz-buzz. Legs stuck in the air and flailed their last. Ah, Liebestod, united even in death!

If it could happen in Pompeii, why not at Belle Ombre, Tom thought.

Ripley’s Game ... here our likeable sociopath takes on the mob (yes, that mob, the one in Italia) ... with mentions of Joe Colombo (Thomas is, after all, Americano) and capos and all forms of organized crime as it attempts to establish itself in Hamburg, Deutschland (yes, Germany) … this was a fun read that was written in a slightly different manner from the other Ripley’s. In this one, Ripley is slighted at a party and feels a need to take a shot back at the guy who did the slighting (usually he just kills them), but before long he goes from screwing with the guy’s head to helping him whack a capo on a train. No spoilers here, except to say Highsmith shocked the shit out of me with this terrific addition to Ripley world. Much of the novel doesn’t include Ripley himself but when he returns, it’s in all his sociopathic splendor and he’s taken arms (and hammers) against the real mafia.

For those of yous who like novels that come in bunches (series), you’re really missing out on some terrific writing and wonderful storytelling. Patricia Highsmith’s work is incredible, pure and simple.

Victory ... oh, they are partying in Buffalo, New York this weekend and not just for the win. It looks as though we have seen the last of the “No Huddle/No Win” offense. Finally, the Bills broke from a huddle and thanks to the Y-E-T-S, Yets, Yets, Yets absolute offensive meltdown, we managed 16 big ones to their 13. Now, usually after 6 getting turnovers, a team will score closer to 30 points, but never let it be said that my beloved new york state buffalo bills like to run up the score on the downtrodden. It may have been yet another rock of the week fiasco (and funded DOC's luxury car collection) but it sure was a nice surprise.

59-0 ... whereas the cheaterfaces in New England love to kick teams when they are down and they ran up the score on the team that most folded its tent so far this year, the Tennessee Tuxedos. I had thought it was the scheduling that hurt the TT’s, but there’s no getting away from this one; they quit. As for the cheaterfaces, I hope the rest of the league takes it out on them the rest of the way.

Enough with these fugazy political parties. Do the Republicans or Democrats really represent your interests?

Nader in 2012!


And the DOC says ...

Hey Chaz,

I really like that Nader shirt. Maybe you could get me one. Better yet, maybe you could get me the whole set of 20. 2012, 2008, 2004, 2000, etc, etc, yada, yada, yada. Jeez, Chaz, this knucklehead has been running for president since you were just a 200 pound tyke in Pre-K reform school. Or am I picking up some pattern here? Ralph Nader... the Buffalo Bills. You probably lost a bundle betting on that Russian in Rocky IV.

And what is this playing both sides of the fence? Your "Lock of the Week" hit the wall harder than Mr. Magoo playing Hai-Lai... but that's a good thing. Yeah, tell that to your readers who took out the last of their 401-K to bet your pick of the week.

Yeah, now Fredo is after Fox news and Rush Limbaugh. Doesn't he have something more important to do? Perhaps tending to the 2 wars we have going on. Or is he just voting "Present" again. Old habits die hard. I just love the new trend of Fredo's Czars quoting Mao. Now, there's a role model! Remember when public servants used to quote Mark Twain and Will Rogers? Perhaps they should be listening to their constituents who are experiencing empty shelves in the ammunition aisle of their favorite convenience store. Maybe they could figure out why.

I guessed you must be in the dog house again when I saw your whimpering admission of missing a "Buon Giorno". So what did you do? Accidently eat her favorite credenza? Left out some viagra for Spartacus?

Later, dude,