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Monday, February 15, 2016

The Writer's Life 2/15 - Brooklyn Noir

Among a recent batch of a donation to the floating book shop was Brooklyn Noir 3. I immediately set it aside for reading. To my disappointment, all 16 stories are non-fiction, each set in a different neighborhood, although there is overlap. Almost every case was famous, tabloid fodder. The Brooklyn Bogeyman by C.J. Sullivan is listed as Bensonhurst, the neighborhood in which I grew up. It summarizes the Son of Sam case, which was broken when someone recalled that a car had been ticketed on Shore Road, near the site of the last shooting. To my surprise, there are many, including Sullivan, who believe others may have been involved in the murders. The only comment I have about that is why did the carnage cease after David Berkowitz was apprehended? The piece in the collection I enjoyed most is No Roses for Bubbeh by Reed Farrell Coleman. Although it is listed as Coney Island, the key event happened where he worked, near the Sheepshead Bay post office, which is a five-minute walk from where I've lived since 1988, and which I've passed or patronized thousands of times. Coleman was a teenager in the 70's when he witnessed a businessman's agonizing death on the sidewalk from a stab wound delivered by a thief, something he will never forget. All of the collection is well-written. The writers all have been moderately successful, several having worked as journalists. I simply prefer fiction. This edition was published in 2008 by Akashic Books, which has issued similar books covering the rest of the five boroughs, New Jersey and other areas of the country. On a scale of five, I rate it three. Eight users at Amazon have rated BN3, forging to a consensus of 4.3 of five. I'd be surprised if there would be much interest in it outside NYC.

It's Fashion Week in NYC and the NY Post runs photos of the event each day. I have a question. Why do the models seem so unhappy or indifferent? Are they told not to smile by designers who fear it will detract from the clothing? I don't get it.

It's snowing at the moment. It's supposed to change to rain overnight as the temperature climbs into the 50's. If the forecast is correct. the floating book shop's six-day hiatus will end Wednesday. Today I earned some money helping a handicapped friend who will be moving this summer. We cleaned out a liquor cabinet she hadn't opened in at least 20 years. It was so dusty I had to wear a mask and gloves. About 20 of the 50 bottles were sealed and went back into the cabinet, along with a bunch of dishes and such -- after I cleaned the shelves with a damp cloth. We didn't find any money, but there was a diamond encrusted piece of jewelry in there. It was a gift from a boyfriend she would have married had he not passed away suddenly 30 years ago. There were a lot of chapters of her life in that now rickety piece of furniture. We sorted through it piece by piece. The most treasured item was inside a thin cardboard box -- a handsomely bound book she gave her adopted son on the day he converted to Judaism.
Vic's Short Works:
Vic's 5th Novel:'s 4th novel:
Vic's 3rd Novel:
Vic's Short Story on Kindle:
Vic's Short Story Collection:
Vic's 2nd Novel: Kindle:
Vic's 1st Novel:

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