Framing the Dialogue

Archive for February, 2014

The Intercept

the intercept 1The Intercept is the first novel by famed television creator Dick Wolf.  Mr. Wolf joins a crowded genre of American law enforcement personnel working to prevent another terrorist attack in the United States.  We are introduced to Jeremy Fisk, an NYPD detective assigned to their Intelligence Division, the only such local government to have an intelligence service.  They are tasked with protecting New York City from further attacks and the Muslim terrorists have not been idle;

100 Books

book shelfOur friends at Amazon sent me an email with a link to the “100 Books To Read In A Lifetime.”  My curiosity was peaked so I went to the link.  Now I’ve read a lot of books, some of them even considered literature, but I wanted to know how many of these “Lifetime” books I had read.  The first thing that struck me was how few I had read.  I unofficial count was twenty out of the hundred.  Many of these were kids books that I had read with my children while they were young.   Some I wanted to count, but resisted as I had not read the books, but proof read book reports of many of these when my children read them for school.

Last Refuge

last refuge 2Dewey Andreas is back in this latest in the series by Ben Coes featuring the exploits of the X-Delta member.  As often is the case in this genre things go really bad then they get worse and things look dire and the hero, in this case Dewey, sweeps in and all is better.  I don’t mean that to be flip as I found this to be an enjoyable novel, but that is the general formula for these novels.  The devil or in this case the quality is in the details.

Heart-Shaped Box

heart shaped box2So with a sub-headline of “Sooner or later the dead catch up…” you can reasonably surmise that this novel by Joe Hill is not a cute Valentine’s Day love story, though in a dark way it is…a very dark way.  Middle aged hard rocker Judas Coyne has gone through the wild years, the loss of band mates and too many young Goth women.  I imagine his character as Ozzy Ozborne without the permanent brain damage.  Loving the macabre Coyne buys something on an on-line auction that arrives in a Heart-Shaped Box, also the title of the book, that more than lives up to his expectations and changes his life forever.

War On Work

welfare stateThe Senate Budget Committee reports that in fiscal year 2012, between food stamps, housing support, child care, Medicaid and other benefits, the average U.S. Household below the poverty line received $168.00 a day in government support.  What’s the problem with that much support? Well, the median household income in America is just over $50,000, which averages out to $137.13 a day. To put it another way, being on welfare now pays the equivalent of $30.00 an hour for a 40-hour week, while the average job pays $20.00 an hour.

tax the rich

Up Country

up countryNelson DeMille has become one of my favorite authors.  I only discovered his work a year or so ago, but he has never disappointed.  In Up Country  DeMille pulls from his experience fighting in Vietnam and I have to wonder how much detail revealed by character Paul Brenner was actually DeMille’s.

In the novel Brenner is a retired Army investigator from the Criminal Investigation Division.  He is asked by a former superior to investigate a crime.  The only problem is that the crime was perpetrated in Vietnam…thirty years ago.  So Mr. Brenner begins his journey back to his past on what seems to be a secret mission though he is suspicious that there is more to the investigation that he has been told.

Fatal Goof

oopsI may have to add this headline caption to my list of things to avoid.  I have goofed a lot in my years and obviously they have never reached the fatal stage.  This, however, is not a sad headline as you might first think.

This Fatal Goof was  “An instructor teaching his terror recruits how to make car bombs accidentally set off explosives in his demonstration on Monday, killing 21 of them in a huge blast.”  The good news for the Iraqi Sunni “insurgents” (the Associated Press still cannot call them terrorists) is that the bombs are quite effective…the bad news is that the bomb was quite effective though a bit early on the trigger.  The further bad news for the terrorists (see AP that’s not hard to say) is that the blast showed the military the location of their once-secret training camp just north of Bagdad.

How Long Do I Have?

old-man-doctorA man recently picked a new primary care doctor. After two visits and exhaustive Lab tests, the doctor said that the man was doing ‘fairly well’ for his age (he had just turned 65). A little concerned about that comment, he couldn’t resist asking the doctor, ‘Do you think I’ll live to be 80?’

The doctor asked back, ‘Do you smoke tobacco, or drink beer, wine or hard liquor?’ to which the man replied ‘Oh no. I’m not doing drugs, either!’

Then he his asked his patient, ‘Do you eat rib-eye steaks and barbecued ribs?’ And got the reply ”Not much… my former doctor said that all red meat is very unhealthy!’