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Retirement. Publishers, thank you for the many years of reading pleasure you gave me, but all good things must come to an end. Due to failing eyesight I am forced to retire. I can no longer review your books, and any that you send will be donated to the local library, unread. Do not send any more. I can only read for a couple hours every day, and this does not allow me to finish a book in reasonable time. I will be devoting time to my own books from now on, and reading on a personal level. Books that interest me. I prefer paperbacks and hardbacks, not eBooks. My eyesight has been failing the last few years, and I cannot handle hundreds of review books any more. My books are still available for review. Anyone interested in reviewing any of them, they are found in the Link to Tom’s Books On Amazon. Contact me for pdf copies at

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Bones of Brooklyn

Bones of Brooklyn continues the saga of Howard "Windows" Fenster, the reluctant gangster extraordinaire. In Debasements of Brooklyn, Howie fights his way out of Sheepshead Bay, using insights gleaned from his father's collection of Penguin Classics and an automatic handgun provided by his late boss Vinnie Five-Five. Accompanied by his girl Ariel, they mean to make a brief stop at her studio in Greenwich Village before they escape to points west, north, south or east, anywhere out of the murderous precincts of non-gentrified Brooklyn. But inertia and post-traumatic stress nail them in place. Howie grows a top-knot and finds Bohemian café, while Ariel loses herself in the enticing winter scenes painted inside the Grey Goose bottle. It doesn't take long for Pauli Bones, Howie's psychopathic patron, to track him down. Howie owes Pauli, and Pauli needs Howie because war decimated the old crew and his new crew consists of inept second stringers and unreliable mercenaries. The journey to self-discovery brings Howie to the very point where he started, this time with a new awareness of his powers. Shock and disappointment overwhelm Howie when he learns just how skilled a gangster he is. Pauli Bones, Rose Spoleto (widow of Vinnie Five-Five,) and the Slavic Goddess Alexandra Rachmaninoff all rely on his professional competence to take care of business. Is this it for Howie? Is his dream of living the life of the mind over for good? Can Ariel, whose career in marketing is only tangentially related to extortion and murder, adjust to Howie's new/old life? And if she can, can Howie still love her if he loathes the gangster in himself? The answer to these questions may not satisfy Howie, but they will amuse and horrify everyone else.

Bones of Brooklyn (Mob Fiction)
By Ira Gold
The Permanent Press
ISBN #978-1579625269
208 Pages
Price $25.60 (Hardback)
Rating 3-Stars

Jewish gangster, Howard Fenster and his girlfriend Ariel, between sexual romps, decide to leave Brooklyn. However, Pauli Bones has other plans for him. Pauli, a mob boss without top men under him, wants Howard to kill Russian, Ivan Rachmaninoff. Howard owes Pauli, but he doesn’t want to kill the Russian.

The publisher sent me a copy for an honest review. I think this novel was supposed to be funny, but I found it anything but comical. The sex and profanity running throughout the story left little time for good world building, and I just couldn’t relate to any of the characters. I’m sure it will bring smiles to many, but I found it crude and of little interest.

Tom Johnson

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