May 12, 2010

Book Review: Beat the Reaper

I picked up this book in a strip mall near Dungun on the road back to Selangor from Kuala Terengganu along with the purchase of a dozen wrapping papers and two other books.

As I read the opening paragraphs I found my self grinning wider and wider. Soon my eyes popped and I chuckled, footnote on a work of  fiction, Whoa! That's boldness right there. Not many people find the tiny things with asterisks agreeable (let alone ones that are appearing on the second page), but I dig 'em and yes I'm that dorky.... Here comes the first paragraph.....

"So I am on my way to work and I stop to watch a pigeon fight a rat in the snow, and some fuckhead tries to mug me! Naturally there's a gun. He comes up behind me and sticks it into the base of my skull. It's cold, and it actually feels sort of good, in an acupressure kind of way."Take it easy, Doc," he says."

"Beat the Reaper" tells the story of a Pietro "Bearclaw" Brnwa, intern-med and  ex-hitman whose grandparents escaped Auschwitz only to be killed by a third-rate-gangster in their supposedly tranquil days. Improbable you say? Of course!!! But that's the main attraction. It's amazing on how Bazell managed to weave believability out of  the strangest subplots. You'd keep mumbling "No that's preposterous!" and yet you sink into his quicksand quite happily.  It's daytime soap opera on dope!
And anyway Mr. Bazell has two degrees BA in English lit and an MD from Columbia. And that's enough to make you believe he got superpowers....
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