Jul 16, 10
Read in July, 2010
I’ve read three Gishler books now, and this, I suspect, may be my favorite. It’s a wonderful parody of the hit man novels becoming so prevalent. You have hitmen chasing hitmen, chasing hitwomen, all in a madcap over-the-top set of scenes. Every possible caricature is presented: a dysfunctional family formerly headed by a lunatic CIA operative, his three daughters (Big Sister, Middle Sister, and Baby Sister) the oldest of whom takes on the task of eliminating witnesses to the exit into the United States from a ship’s container of an Islamic suicide bomber. Their mother, another CIA operative has settled into dementia and is knitting a never-ending scarf (shades of Madame LeFarge.) At each step along the way, the actors in the soap opera subcontract their jobs to other misfits, including Jack Sprat a diminutive circus performer married to a 420 lb. alligator wrestler on steroids. In one really great scene, Middle Sister, now trying to go more or less straight, dons her uniform as an army major (but putting on the leaf cluster of a light colonel for good measure) commandeers a fully armed helicopter to attack Mike Foley, himself a retired hitman growing grapes for wine in Oklahoma!, and kill Andrew, Mike's nephew, who is the real target. She decides to strafe and while doing so gets a call from her husband wanting to know how to make his supper. I thought it was hysterical. You get the idea.
Very enjoyable and very clever. Gishler is worth reading.