Friday, February 18, 2011
"Don NOT salute me! There are snipers...who'd love to grease an officer." Forrest Gump
2nd Lt. Roy Banks is questioned about the murder of Lt. Jessica Lamoreaux. He tells investigators that he doesn't know anything. Then, the story flashes back to events leading up to the moment.
Banks is having an affair with a Captain's wife. He's part of a group that likes to party, called "The Officers' Club."
Vietnam is over and life in the military is comparatively relaxed. Banks pals around with his buddy, Lt. Jeff Massetto.
Jessica arrives at a party with another officer. Later in the evening she approaches Banks and attempts to seduce him. Roy tells her that he's involved with someone and declines her offer. This seems to motivate Jessica and she continues to pursue Roy as if she had a fixation with him.
Roy sees that she is manipulative and calculating. She uses others for her own purposes and proceeds to sleep with most of the people in Roy's circle of friends.
Roy gets a call from his friend Jerry. Jerry is in terrible trouble in Mexico and he needs help. Later, he informs Roy that Jessie set him up.
Was the novel interesting? Yes, in a dark way. It held my attention and described life in a James Ellroy manner, bleak but true to life.
This reminded me of the realism movement in literature with Frank Norris and Upton Sinclair. The characters' lives were'nt heroic, they didn't evoke sympathy but they did depict a slice of life.
I also applaud the author for his sympathetic treatment of one character who was an early AIDS victim. The character describes his illness but doesn't know the cause or what the eventual outcome will be, unfortunately, in the early days of AIDS, the outcome was always terminal.
Please check my Amazon review and if possible, indicate the review was helpful.