Living Through Another Cuba

The Cuban Affair
Nelson DeMille

While I’m fighting the urge to begin with a lament, I might be better off with a trite observation: there’s such a thing as too much of a good thing.

I may, in fact, have established that I should limit myself Continue reading


And They’re Doing the Atomic Bomb

Radiant Angel
Nelson DeMille

It’s not everyday a prime example of publishing practice and authorial obsession drops into my lap. Maybe it’s just Long Island luck.

Our author is an old friend, reared in the same town as me. Nelson DeMille‘s books are my guilty pleasure and the most pleasurable ones are set on Long Island. Only a Continue reading

Be Fire Next Time

Nelson DeMille

wild_fireWhat should we make of best-selling books bearing  cautionary author’s notes?

Under other circumstances I might not be diverted to pondering such a question. But the 45th President of the United States was sworn in the other day and he pledged to “unite the civilized world” in removing “radical Islamic Continue reading

A Man With A Calling

The Charm School
Nelson DeMille

Charm_SchoolReturn with me now to those thrilling days of yesteryear. No, not the wild west, or even The Wild, Wild West, but to the days of East versus West.  Around these parts vacation means light reading and nowadays Cold War thrillers seems downright quaint.

This time Mr. DeMille takes us a little farther afield than Long Island, the site of the last Cold War tale we read from him. If you’ve been here before you know that one  of my Continue reading

Don’t Go Back to Rockville

Nelson DeMille

Let me state the obvious: there is no song lyric about Spencerville, at least that I’m aware of. And so I find myself stretching to make a completely unrelated burg serve as a stand-in so I can maintain a conceit about post titles.

Well, I had to fail sometime. And since none of this has Continue reading

When Two Tribes Go to War

The Talbot Odyssey
Nelson DeMille

Demille_OdysseyRemember the 1980s? To me they seem like yesterday. But a 35-year old has only childhood memories of the second half of that decade. So I had to ask.

It’s an especially relevant question about a not especially important book. But the whole plot of this political thriller will make more sense if you can remember that we used to worry about Continue reading

Two-fer: What I Read on my Summer Vacation

Michael Masterson, the direct marketing entrepreneur, has suggested that beach books are, like television, mental junk food. While I have some sympathy for that position, like everyone else I sometimes need a break. Better a best-selling novel than sitcoms (although I do those, too). My justification is that I can’t dissociate completely from the broader culture .

This year I actually didn’t get a summer vacation and I’ve taken to saying that July was the longest 3 months of my life. Still, there was the occasional few hours a week at the town pool. That was enough to get in a couple of books by popular authors Carl Hiaasen and Nelson DeMille.

Carl Hiaasen’s Skinny Dip is a typically silly romp through modern-day Florida. A newspaperman and native of the state, Hiaasen is Continue reading