Thursday, July 26, 2012

Samson and Denial - by Robert Ford - Fun with a 3,000 year old mummified head

5 of 5 Stars

Samson Gallows runs a pawn shop in South Philly and he's involved in a little side business with his brother, Markey, if you get my drift.

The story starts with a drugy walking into the shop, wanting to pawn a 3,000 year old, mummified head.

Robert Ford's writing is as real as a Philly cheesesteak, one from Geno's or Pat's, if you will.

Bob knows his craft and how to paint a picture.  "I drove back through Rittenhouse Square and saw the bum was still there.  He was ankle-deep in the fountain, standing in his own water-piss, conducting an orchestra of pigeons to whatever music played in his head."

Samson and Denial is filled with great characters defined by wonderful prose.  Take Wimer Finnegan, a 3rd generation barkeep-owner of Finnegan's tavern, who leans over his bar when Samson comes into his establishment for the 1st time in many years, and says, "If you knew everything you needed to know, you wouldn't be here.  If you didn't know anything at all, you wouldn't be here.  And I know damned well you're not here for the ambience of my upscale drinking establishment.  So quit fuckin' around and just ask.  What do you need to know?"

Just when I was wondering why we hadn't heard any more about the mummified head, all hell breaks loose.  Plenty of action with with everyone from the Russian mob to the Crimson Sisterhood (you really need to be there).

Only a novella, damn.  This was just too good to end.  Bob tells me he's mulling over a sequel.  I'd spend my money on it.

Not for the faint of heart, due to strong language and plenty of violence, but frankly, I love that stuff.

Unfortunately the limited edition paperback has sold out, but it's now avaible for the Kindle from for 2.99 or you can borrow for free from the Kindle Lending Library if you have an Amazon Prime membership.

However you get a copy, I highly recommend Robert Ford's Samson and Denial.

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