I was born into a crazed Jewish family, 1947, and raised in Coney Island. I became a diabetic in 1958 and insulin dependent two years later; five years after that I was to begin what would be a 45 year journey as a junkie, writer, lover, thief, scholar, asshole and idiot to myself and all those I came in contact with. I split from confines of my home early on and, when cutting school, found myself in Greenwich Village where I met and fell in with those also outside the rules of boredom and adopted a lifestyle that deceived me into thinking I could ever really escape myself.
on July 24, 2009 :
With the recent publication of MISTAH (Smashwords.com, 2009) author Norman Savage has rediscovered the art of writing as a kind of life giving force capable of reviving (and redeeming) even the most lost of souls and broken hearted. MISTAH is disguised as a kind of roman a cle, described as a work of fiction, yet more closely related to a work of friction, where the fictitious elements intermingle with the real until the two can no longer be separated. Like the narrator anti-hero in the classic film Sunset Boulevard, Savage’s anti-hero (and, we might as well admit it, alter ego), Max Heller, back tracks a story of an inter-racial love affair set against a backdrop of familial hatreds and societal taboos where dark forces conspire to thwart the two star crossed lovers.
Although only recently published, MISTAH actually was written some seven years prior to the publication of Savage’s even more recent ground-breaking memoir JUNK SICK (Smashwords.com, 2009). Readers of JUNK SICK will quickly see the obvious connections in the narrative that the two books have in common though within MISTAH names have been changed to protect the not so innocent. While some parts of the book read like excerpts from Casino Royale (as Max scores big at the crap tables and then takes off in his Porsche for the Big Easy) who among us can say that we are not all, in one way or another, the sum of our pop cultural influences? I really liked the ambiance descriptions of New Orleans - the smells and sounds and feel of the places, some seedy others extraordinary, that the author narrator describes. MISTAH is a good read on several levels, as pure escapism or for its sifting nuances in mood and style. MISTAH can stand alone as a roman noir mystery in the tradition of Sam Spade in the Maltese Falcon or as a bookend to JUNK SICK. Perhaps the two books will prove to be just two excerpts from a much larger yet to be published body of work. Only time will tell. Reviewed by Jack Henry Markowitz July, 2009.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)