Monday, April 23, 2012

Book Review: Triple Tap by Fred Reed

Triple Tap (Dawson DC Metro Mysteries) on Amazon by Fred Reed

Fiction, File Size: 370 KB, Print Length: 164 pages, $2.99 USD, Copyright 2012 Violeta de Jesus Gonzales Mungia
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Language: English
ASIN: B007956J0O
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Lending: Enabled

I enjoy reading Fred.  The man's work resembles Hunter S. Thompson on 151 rum and steroids instead of Prozac and white wine.  This never imitated, rarely admired style carries over into Fred's fiction, which is no real surprise, and while the results of Fred's efforts are unlikely to gain him a nomination for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize or the Warwick Prize for Writing, the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction isn't out of the question.

Some years ago Fred worked as a news reporter and was paid good money to cover police news in our nation's capital, which has never failed to be listed in the top ten US cities for violent crime.  This is the setting, and Fred's succinct, accurate descriptions of the city have more to them than the casual ring of authenticity - everything writes about is very likely drawn from memory.

This is the first book in a series, in which Dawson (Our Hero!) is a news reporter doing his best to collect a paycheck while avoiding anything that resembles work.  During his waking hours he is joined by his Significant Other Attila the Liberal, whom I suspect is drawn from Fred's lovely, talented, Divinely compassionate wife Violeta.  Other characters (mostly police) kick in doors, bust a few heads and offer opprobrious observations as needed.  I'm betting that if any DC cops get around to reading this book some recognition and denial will take place. 

This is a hard boiled detective novel.  It's full of dirty streets, dirty hands and dirtier secrets.  I didn't find it to be an edge-of-your-seat, pulse-pounding thriller - it's a little better than that.  It's enjoyable to read, and it's technically correct - which gives me the same sense of relief that the average man achieves right after the first Novocaine shot into a wisdom tooth that needs a root canal worse than a Southern Congress critter needs to conceal a cash donation from the New Black Panther Party.  If you haven't guessed, I have a pet peeve about mystery fiction that involves misinformation about firearms, police procedure and gun battles.  Clearly Fred is one of the very few writers that knows about firearms and how police operate.

After flogging his fiction around the block and being rejected by a bevy of left wing fluff balls whose physical desirability is inversely proportional to their collective intellect, Fred decided to publish his opus electronically on Amazon.  I like this for several reasons, not the least of which is that the cost of publication is down, the profit margin for the author is up and the benefit to someone who doesn't feel like speculating on detective fiction with $24.99 plus tax of their hard earned US dead presidents now has a lot of choices. 

You can read more about Fred on his equally dysfunctional website Fred on Everything.  If you like hard boiled detective fiction, Fred's series is a real deal.

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