Sunday, May 11, 2014

Suicide Squeeze by Victor Gischler

           Sometimes a great book can be based on an object that can be creative.  Victor Gishler had done that in his book Suicide Squeeze.  

           Teddy Folger was in the right place at the right time in 1954.  He’s watching the actual shooting of Marilyn Monroe’s movie, the Seven Year Itch.  It’s the big scene where her skirt goes up in the air from a vent below.    Off to the side is Joe DiMaggio, the slugger of the New York Yankees along with the producer, Billy Wilder.  

            Teddy is holding a baseball card of Joe DiMaggo in his hand.  Thanks to his father, he manages to get Joe’s autograph.  Marilyn Monroe also wants to sign the card along with Billy Wilder.  As a result, the card is now priceless.

             This is one of the reasons why Teddy decides to burn down his comic book store in a insurance scam that you would probably see in an Elmore Leonard book.  Then there is Conner Samson, a repro man who manages to get this card that wants to everyone wants to kill for, including some Japanese businessmen.

             Much of the story regards Samson once he has the card and the people who want to get the card from him.  Gishler knows how to keep the story moving being the satirist that he is when he throws some Ninjas in the story as well, making this a good blend of comedy and suspense.

              Samson is likeable but a dope that you would see in an Elmore Leonard book as well, since the story does take place in Florida.  There are other great characters in the book that include a nympho girlfried named Tyranny Jones, and a a pint sized Pensacola crime boss.

               It’s one of my favorite books that has a lot of action, suspense, and comedy blended in, making it worth more than five stars.

Ron Hummer

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