Monday, September 14, 2020

Review: Pushover

Pushover Pushover by Orrie Hitt
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Fund-raising scam artists go into small towns and "write" a book about the town's history as a fund-raising project for the police department or the churches or some other worthy civic cause. They sell ads and sponsorships to local businesses. And they sell, sell, sell the books, but mostly on the side, and keep the profits, plus everything else they can skim off the project. The worthy cause frequently makes next to nothing. On to the next town. That's the crime aspect, and Hitt does a great job detailing how these scams work. Funny thing is the scammers seem to work harder than most people do at legitimate jobs. The protagonist, mastermind of the scams, and our first-person narrator, is Danny Fulton, a self-described louse and jerk, and he lives up to that billing. He spends as much time woman chasing as he does running the scams and that leads to complications threatening to unravel his scam business. His troubles are self-inflicted and he'll deserve what he gets as the book heads to its conclusion. Except there is the matter of the last chapter, which almost feels tacked on. Without the last chapter you have a book that passes the censor test. With it, well, maybe crime does pay.

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