Saturday, October 21, 2006


Testing Casablanca


Blogger glrockey said...

I'm wondering how God logics a "chosen people." But maybe God is outside logic.

11:39 AM  
Blogger glrockey said...

Review of The Journalist

If you’re tired of dumbed-down mysteries and made-for-TV thrillers, read The Journalist. It brings the political tensions and dilemmas of the twenty-first century into razor-sharp focus.

Zackery Stearn eats torrid Mexican food, drinks Bohemia beer and writes newspaper copy—in a world where newspapers are going the way of the T Rex. It’s the year 2008 and profound things are happening on Planet Earth—all of them bad.

The Journalist (Zumaya Publications, 296 pages) is a biting political thriller. G.L. Rockey’s writing is reminiscent of John D. MacDonald’s; his hero, Zackery Stearn, capably plays the role of a modern-day Travis McGee. Like Travis, Zackery is a cynical knight-errant trying to stay afloat in a world of vertiginous moral complexity. There’s a touch of Robert Parker here too, in the sassy, snappy dialog. As befits a man of the twenty-first century though, Zackery is more cerebral and less susceptible to the female sex than either MacDonald’s or Parker’s characters.

The caper in The Journalist centers on a plot to abolish the constitution and the perpetrator is none other than the President of the United States. Coming out of the West Wing is a lot of lofty rhetoric concealing a plot to use the fear of terrorism to strip citizens of their freedom. It’s a little too close to the truth to be comfortable, but The Journalist manages to takes a small, toothy bite at truth without pushing any specific political agenda.

The Journalist is full of colorful characters who get thrown into an increasingly frenetic mix, but the real fun lies in listening to how they all talk to each other. True to life, no one answers anyone’s real questions; they’re too busy listening to their own inner dialog.

One thing you have to watch in The Journalist is that it moves back and forth between characters chapter by chapter. Switching perspective so abruptly means that the characters weave in and out of view. It keeps things fresh, but it also makes it easy to get lost. My advice is to grab yourself a tall Mexican beer, put your feet up and read it straight through.

Saludo, G.L. Rockey. The Journalist is a great read.

Cheryl Swanson,
Author, Death Game

6:03 AM  

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