(God's Pocket) PDF ↠ Pete Dexter
Young Leon Hubbard gets killed on the job and it leads to a whole series of unfortunate events Using his humor and gritty style Dexter writes some of the best deeply flawed characters in literature and Plantae Rariores Quas in Itinere Per Oras Jonii AC Adriatici Maris Et Per Regiones Samnii AC Aprutii (Classic Reprint) puts them in some of the most serious situations so that his books can t help but be enjoyable reads Pete s first novel my 3rd of his is a tight little tale built around a range of characters in small neighborhood in Philadelphia Thelot is spawned very early and the setup draws you immediately by the realism of the dynamics of working class construction crew and an elderly black gentleman a beautifully crafted saintly character who appears briefly who is long serving day laborer and uietly endures the noise and distractions of labor unions street life and racial assumptions inherent in 1980s Philly A seeming random act butterfly flapping its wings sets off a cascade of events that spreads through the community and inflames the simmering tensions just below the surface of the teeming smelly and selfish elements of the urban organism Unintended conseuences run amok and before long a couple of eople have been maimed and killed and loves lost and found I won t spoil the lot since the master deserves to be read firsthand but I will expand a little on the knot of characters since they are so masterful that like great art they will hit each of us according to our own uniue receptionI believe that novelists are artists in the true sense of the word and if they tickle ones fancy and open doors of Trilogie der Verlorenen. Stücke. perception and understanding and eliciture emotion they should be treated as such Dexter does this for me because he makes me believe these eople represent real eople that live in a time and Los cuerpos del verano place yet have universal human emotions of fear envy lust despair and fortunately love Mickey a central character ironically believed falsely but he uses it to be connected and the husband of the woman who s son has just died while looking at the corpse in the morgue observes Mickey looked at Leon again Leon without all that crazy shit floating around in his head it was just a kid a skinny kid It didn t look very substantial to already be a whole lifeMickey saw that that was what Leon must have looked like to Jeanie every day of his life In just a few sentencesunctuated by the broken language in Mickey s head Dexter conveys the mystery of love and revelation as he glimpses his beloved wife s J. K. Rowling: The Wizard Behind Harry Potter point of view This book is chock full ofith observations told from the brains of a range of characters each in their own vernacular He smoothly moves from each and weaves a Paper Hearts patchwork into a composite of the whole gritty Philly environment of the 80s The array and depth of characters is exemplified by the reluctant funeral home director smilin Jack constantly embroiled in shouting matches with his upstairs father whom we never meet trying to sell a coffin to Mickey 64 Smilin Jack always assumed he had money that he didn t have Everyone in the Pocket did They assumed he was connected to There was nobody but Bird that knew anything about it and that included Jeannie too She kept her accounts and he kept his and it seemed like a funny way to be married but she kept a distance from everything He guessed it was her way of seeing things Mickey is a sympathetic character trying to keep up a false image to keep his wife Jeannie the neighborhood beauty from straying and to maintain a living This kind of tension makes Mickey s subseuent actions logical to the reader while a mystery to his wife and the rest of the community Just like in life where we have but a glimpse of each other and scratch our heads at the actions of others In terms of Mercury Retrograde pure observation and descriptiveower Dexter amazes me such as the little vignette where Mickey sees the ticket taker at the theatre as an old woman who d Das Glück der Azteken painted her lips half an inch beyond where they stopped watched him from inside the ticket booth She looked like a baby chicken in an incubator He wondered who sheainted herself up for He d wondered if she d laughed when she was younger while she was getting laid She yawned while he watched her her mouth turning into a tiny black hole He could imagine a lizard coming out of there but not the getting laid kind of laughing God s Pocket is loaded with this kind of imagery and speaks worlds about both the observer and the observed their empathy and their disgust "Every book I ve read by Dexter demonstrates and uncanny observation of "book I ve read by Dexter demonstrates and uncanny observation of and class especially those downtrodden and ignored For example Lucien or old Lucy everyone in town has a nickname having just experienced the most dangerous experience of his life and fearing his own death as observed by his ious loving and saintly wife The last time she d seem him smile like that his mother had just died She was ninety seven and they wasn t near enough ower left in her motor to make things work all at once so sometimes she did her thinkin and sometimes she did her talkin but it wasn t never at the same time The intelligence of his wife her uiet Apoplexia, Toxic Shock, and Toilet Bowl Some Notes On Why I Write power of observation and her understanding and longsuffering isitch erfect Dexter changes his voice to that of each narrator like a race car driver shifting gears with lubricated and invisible erfection So What the Wood Whispers To Itself perfect you could miss it his writing is that good Mickey s friend Bird the Italian who really is marginally connected and his aged mother are simply a hoot and richly and despicably rendered but some of his hangers on are marginal and terrifying Bird s nephew sharpened the knife The blade was a foot and a half long and flashed in the light The light came from two bulbs hanging over the table from black cords that had been taped six of sevenlaces Now that he looked Mickey saw that one of them was taped with Band Aids When the knife was sharpened the nephew began to cut He never considered the meat he just cut He had a uick Beyond Citizenship: American Identity After Globalization practiced motion you could almost see Leon with his razor and a look on hislace as if he d seen everything on the Allerhand Fragliches planet If he d opened up a cow s ass and foundearls his eyes would have stayed the same way they were flat as a foot of snow That world weary aspect not uite cynical with the sparkle of danger is one of Dexter s Yolanda's Genius particular delicacies He tosses them off seemingly for free where most authors would labor andush their clevernessFrom my other readings of Dexter and a tad from his bio I know his Fettan penchant for violence is always behind the scenes His authenticity describing it seemsure seems Die Kunst Des Zeichnens: Die grosse Zeichenschule: Praxisorientiert und gut erklärt personal hard won Unlike those caricatures so common in film and other books you get the feeling Dexter has been in some real scrapes and knowsain real ain not the kind the fearful imagine it to be Take this section p 121 where the construction foreman Peets realizing his old friend Lucy is going to be unfairly singled out having taken a blow to heat from two heavily muscled thugs intending to do him serious harm Peets felt an old calm settle in he noticed the blood dropping around his boots not a lot of it about like the drops you get right before a heavy rain the one with the knuckles on his fist had a The Villain: The Life of Don Whillans peculiar look on his face but he steadied himself and turned to throw anotherunch Peets reached out and smothered his hand and then found his face and then with the same broad motion you might use to shape an eye cavity in clay he ushed into the corner of the socket and took the man s eye outand the calm assed and something was loose in Peets The turnings of the mind the surprising clarity of vision amongst chaos are remarkable Like some of the great war novelists have done There is so much in this book in fact it is absolutely dense with the richness of its characters and a joy to read I would be remiss to not comment about "the daily news reporting and especially the aged 53 is old "daily news reporting and especially the aged 53 is old s what I am columnist one art completely cynical about his job and the other art with the writers ear and eye for the underlying truth to tell Like all humans at his core he seeks love but in a wolf like fashion following his clever instincts and drowning his regrets and despair in regular bouts of drunkenness while ursing Mickey s wife Richard stood up and went to the table where he d thrown his ants over the typewriter when he d come in last nightthe change fell on the floor uarters and dimes scattered over the room in a way that might have resembled the beginning of the universe It wasn t 10 o clock in the morning and he d already discovered the big banghe was only Times of Bede partly worried about Jeannie s husband He d watched them together for two minutes and that was time than he d needed She looked right through him and he looked at her like there was nothing else in the room You get theredicament and the battle for Jeannie is a close one all the while she keeps a close lid on her own mysterious musings and needsIn summary this book is the kind that makes me delighted to see on Google that Dexter is still alive and there are of his books I haven t read Pete if you are out there keep working at it It must be hard to conjure up after awhile and autobiographical material like God s Pocket must have drained it way back in 1983 Authentic writing reuires true living and that can be hard with continued success so I wish Pete all the best in keeping it real And thank you for telling this farmboy your tale and helping me understand working class urban life and these fellow humans all around me The The Catechism of the Council of Trent pacing the language that he commands with such ease wonderful characters who can surprise without beggaring belief Dexter chooses just the right details to sketch the individuals and their surroundings omitting anything surplus You know where you are who you re with no loose ends How is this a first novel The narrative clips along in brief episodes moving the action from construction site to neighborhood bar to racetrack to refrigerated truck Grown men cry in bathtubs Old women shoot interlopers in the nose This is a very funny bookGod s Pocket is not my first Pete Dexter I read Paris Trout The Paperboy and Train I have collected all that I can find and amarcelling them out to myself with an eye to making the City for Sale: Ed Koch and the Betrayal of New York pleasure lastI can write no better blurb than the one by Richard Price on the cover my copy of the book God s Pocket sings snarls mugs wisecracks buys you a drink steals your wallet and takes you home to meet the folks Book Review by Sharon Powers Leon Hubbard had worried most everybody on the crew at one time or another he d even touched something in Peets It wasn t the razor Peets had taken razors away fromeople that was as simple as understanding you were going to get cut it was something in the kid you didn t want to listen to The truth was he didn t believe the kid s stepfather was connected That was bullshit the same way the razor was He kept it in his back The Runaway Prophet Jonah Study Guide 1998 pocket and brought it out twenty thirty times a day He used it to cut lunch meat and tell stories and shape his fingernails Once they d found a bat inside a cinder block and he d used the razor to cut its head off Then he d wrung everything out of the body and said I seen that happen to a nun once4 The above brilliant disgusting Književna groupie 2: Strovaljivanje paragraph nails Leon Hubbard sersonality down to a tee And whether Leon is a sychopath or a sociopath is irrelevant Pete Dexter shows us in just one short aragraph everything we don t want to know about Leon For even if we bel. In this striking debut from the author of the National Book Award winner Paris Trout Pete Dexter chronicles a murder and its conseuences in the fictional blue collar Philadelphia neighborhood of God’s Pocket Leon Hubbard makes other men ne. Ieve that Leon s little assertion about the nun is bullshit we still see something twisted about him something in the kid we don t want to listen to Something in the kid we know is about to boil over into trouble Later this not wanting to listen to this something you don t want to see or know about Leon continues as Peets observes It was like when you re watchin something you don t want to see but you can t look away 105 This behavior is often seen in witnesses to a crime they can t look away and can t help seeing it but having seen it still adamantly deny having seen itThe Learner Strategies in Language Learning people of God s Pocket South Philly live with this attitude about Leon Hubbard As you read the book look to see what else its characters deny hearing or seeing Relationships Bigotry Pain The dirtiness of the city seople whether or not we refer to the city and its Dangerously Placed people literally or metaphorically 3THE BOOK Note Some spoilers areresent in the following material Leon Hubbard is the Just Destiny pivotaloint in this story A story about a young man who as the book s Paradise Run publisher s say had it coming to him And what exactly did Leon Hubbard have due and coming to him Why nothing than an accidental death But Leon s mother thinks there s to the story than meets the eye even though she cannot explain why she thinks that way She convinces well known andopular newspaper columnist Richard Shellburn to look into things for her Does the alcoholic and womanizing Shellburn take up the cause just to get into Jeanie Hubbard Scarpato s bed or is going on than a just cause In the upcoming movie Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as Mickey Scarpatoand John Turturo stars as Arthur Bird CapezioMickey s friend and accomplice in this scene from the movieGod s Pocket set in South Philadelphia USA And then there is Jeanie Hubbard Scarpato s husband Mickey Scarpato Mickey tells his friend Arthur Bird Capezio about his wife s concerns that something was concealed from the family regarding Leon s death Bird goes to Vinney a made man in the area for a favor to have him look into things for the family So now along with the olice a total of three investigations about Leon s death are taking lace It isn t long before a domino effect has exciting interactions happening all over God s Pocket in South PhillyLeon is considered to be bad news What other kinds of bad news face the characters in the book This story is about insiders and outsiders a mother s love and a meat wagon with than just beef in it and how Help Me, Jacques Cousteau people deal with bad news God s Pocket is irreverent and gritty hilariously dark and broodingly funny We must knowwill theeople of God s Pocket bury the truth about bad news Leon because they don t want their illusions destroyed Will Leon take his bad news with him to the grave Or will Vinney and his boys kill the story to keep God s Pocket s dirty little secrets safeMY FAVORITE UOTE Briefly to set the scene Vinney The Italian has sent two men to rough up Coleman Peets foreman on the worksite where Leon died in an attempt to get information about Leon s death to Dignity Rising 1: Gefesselte Seelen pass on to Arthur Bird Capezio who then intends toass the info on to Mickey and he to Jeanie It s the end of the workday and Peets is getting ready to go home he is standing in the bed of his The Book of Mordred pickup truck shoveling sand out of it into aile The two thugs approach and one climbs up and stands behind Peets Here s what happens nextThe thug said We can do this the easy way or the hard waythe other one fit his fingers into a set of artificial knuckles What s it gonna be home boy Peets said It happened the way I said to the Oracle R12 Applications DBA Field Guide police and you Jew boys can do it any damn way you want hard or easy and it don t matter to me The one who hadushed him threw the hand with the artificial knuckles at Peets face and caught the top of his foreheadPeets felt an old calm settle in he noticed the blood dropping around his bootshe noticed a man across the street standing and watchingThe one with the knucklesturned to throw another unch Peets reached out "AND SMOTHERED HIS HAND AND THEN "smothered his hand and then his face and then with the same broad motion you might use to shape an eye cavity in clay he ushed into the corner of the socket and took the man s left eye outPeets caught another look at the man across the street He was sitting on a fire hydrant now watchingThe second man Peets Hidden Boundaries picked him up by the jaw and theants and held him over his headHe threw the body now from the bed of the truck to the ground One of the legs attached to it hit the rear gate of the truck twisted and came to rest bridged to the little ile of sand Peets had shoveled out of the truck The leg looked broken but Peets jumped down and made sure Then he looked across the street at the man on the fire hydrant The man looked back He stood up slowly nodded clapped five or six times and then headed east down the street Philadelphia condensed uotation p 118 122 I really like it that Coleman Peets isn t just going to stand around and wait for two thugs to beat him senseless or Gods Callgirl put him in the hospital And while we don t know in the story who the watching bystander is who approves and even applauds Peets handling of the situation in some sense we as readers join that anonymous bystander in cheering Peets Even so after the applause and cheering has died down we must consider that the bystander like many witnesses to crimes or violent behaviour does not call theolice He is one of those silent witnesses who sees nothing hears nothing and knows nothing Street justice has been served But if we know anything about made men we know the boss cannot just let it go that his men were beaten and hospitalized someone will have to Forever I'm Yours pay But in this case it isn t Peets The vingnette reinforces Pete Dexter s motifs in the story of the unseeing and unhearing witnesses who live in God s PocketWHAT ELSE I THINK ABOUT THE BOOK A number of wonderfully interwoven themes exist so let s just look at a few of the most important themes1 The themes of safety and knives We start out with Leon s straight razor a knife It is the opposite of a safety razor it is anything but safe so what we are really talking about is not being safe Of other knives in the story one ofarticular interest is the one used by the butcher boy Tony Bird s nephew who uses it to cut up the stolen meat a big art of the black humor of the book and movie The young man is so roficient at cutting up the meat that watching him ut them in mind of Leon and one could almost see Leon with his razor 111 And then there is Richard Shellburn the columnist and an outsider to the Pocket who carried a Renoir picture in his head that he was SAFE all the time He even had a little retreat a secret littlelot of land he could retreat to when things got to him Nebular Sammelband 5 - Galaxis in Panik p 136 But Shellburn wasn t safe and he never saw it coming The danger came from his bossRichard Shellburn created aicture in his head that he was SAFE all the time Little did he know that he was about to be taken out in his own end zone In fact his boss TD Davis had lived through something traumatic that had him always looking at the timing of things At a former aper an employee came in wielding a chain saw and cut up his desk in an attempt to keep things uiet Davis had issued a no talk order It leaked out to the other apers and Davis was fired Ever after Davis always kept a watchful eye on employees In a meeting one day with Shellburn Davis considers that he has not been as vigilent with Shellburn as he should have been Davis doesn t want Shellburn to destroy him so he sets Shellburn up takes him out first Davis knows that the Bakunin: The Creative Passion piece Shellburn wantsublished will spell his ruin and The Donegal Woman perhaps his death so Davis approves the article forublication Later the eople of God s Pocket are so incensed by Shellburn calling them dirty that one evening at a bar while Shellburn is having a heart attack they attempt to beat him to death But he while Shellburn is having a heart attack they attempt to beat him to death But he first and they end up beating his dead body What happened here to Shellburn is called a safety in football Where you are tackled from behind your own goal line often not seeing it coming That is basically what happens to Shellburn he gets taken out behind his own goal line Alternatively you can look at Shellburn and his assistant Billy Deebol as laying the safetymen who defend the furthest area back in the field God s Pocket But I like the Safety definition better I wonder if TD Davis s initials stand for Touch Down It s not the same thing as a safety but it s still kinda funnyeh Finally we have safety as used in the workplace and safety in sex rubbers I m thinking of Leon s sexual liason with Fat Pat here also safety when the judge Kaluist acts in a trial to The Necromancer, or The Tale of the Black Forest protect an accused man on charges of murder Jeanie Hubbard after her first husband s death accepts Mickey Scarpatto and marries him because she feels safe with him And then there is the whole neighborhood anyone who is OF God s Pocket is safe in the group it s the outsiders who have to watch out2 OutsidersInsiders If you were born and raised in God s Pocket you re in if not no matter how long you are there you re still an outsider The night of Shellburn s death when theatrons are attacking Shellburn the bartender tells them to take it outside And Mickey in God s Pocket for years and married to an insider Jeanie making deliveries to the bar for years is told You ain t from here either so stay the fuck out of it Amstel Girl: Playing With Destiny p267 Later some street kids tell Mickey Yo Mickwe want you to know wereciate you not talkin to the cops You stood up like you was art of the Pocket Mickey responds Don t include me in nothin about the Pocket 2693 Forgiveness Leaving the Neighborhood and Love The scene takes A Diary of Darkness: The Wartime Diary of Kiyosawa Kiyoshi place in the Hollywood Bar where Ray and Mickey are talking Everything we need to know about the Pocket happens in this conversationRays says The average American has substituted cliches for thought Ray threw down another shot and asked Mickey You want to know the real reason I never leftThe real reason he said is forgiveness I want to be forgiven Ray shook his head You can t forgive me Mickey he said You re an intelligent man but you don t know anything here I grew up with theseeople They ve seen me lying in Hiam puke and I ve seen them lying inuke no matter what I am they ve got to forgive meThe only thing they can t forgive is leaving the neighborhoodMcKenna gave last call at two and turned on the lightssomebody yelled Yo turn off the fuckin lights McKenna went back to the wall and dimmed the lights Drink up he said again And they did They d seen each other in the light once and that was enoughMickey watched them leaveand he knew in that moment exactly what Ray had been talking about only he d said forgiveness when he meant love Mickey could see how you could get them mixed up We Give a Squid a Wedgie (An Accidental Adventure, p227 By the end of the book when Mickey leaves we can see he better understands about forgiveness and love with his wifeerhaps there was not love there only acceptance and safety for a while he keeps his crazy friendship with Bird and Barbarossa Through Soviet Eyes perhaps that is enoughfraternal love And then of course they commit the one unforgiveable sin they leave the neighborhoodTHE MOVIE Go to YouTube and take a look at the insane trailer rife with black humor and making me laugh out loud I loved seeing Hoffman AKA Mickey chasing down the meat truck on foot which in turn causes a traffic accident with a bus and that in turn causes Leon to fall. Rvous talking to himself or anyone who will listen about the things he’s cut with his straight razor So when he crosses the wrong guy on a South Philly construction site and winds up with his head caved in everyone is content to bury the bad. Out of the refrigerated truck and into the streetto the amazement of all Note onlyart of this scene is in the trailer Of course I ve read the book and can read some of the scenes and know why they are included If you read the book you ll get in on the inside jokes too Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as Mickey Scarpato and John Turturro as Arthur Bird Capezio and Joyce Van Patten as Bird s Aunt Sophie You just gotta love Aunt Sophie what a surprise she is andwhat a Kropotkin: 'The Conquest of Bread' and Other Writings pistol Christine Hendricks as Jeanie Scarpato Caleb Landry Jones as Leon Hubbard Bill Buell as Ray Richard Jenkins as Richard Shellburn Arthur French as Lucien Old Lucy Edwards and Glenn Fleshler as Coleman Peets Writing Credits go to Peter Dexter for the novel and Alex Metcalf and John Slattery for the screenplay Directing the movie is John Slattery The movie is Rated R is 88 minutes long and islaced in the Drama category The movie opens in theaters in LIMITED RELEASE on May 9 2014 USAMY RECOMMENDATIONS AND RATINGS The Motion Picture Rating MPAA is R In this movie it is rated R for the violence the language throughout the movie and sexual content in cluded I would likewise rate the book the same way I do not recommend this book for young children or for some sensitive readers who are easily distraught over death and violence or bad language I do however recommend this book to all adults who may enjoy black humor gritty realism and an irreverent look at life This story is set in South Philly God s Pocket South Philadel Tolstoy and the Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading phia and is therefore a regionally based story Those who know nothing of Philly may not understand all the re gional references takinglace within the context of the book and movie I was surprised by this book I normally don t care too much for black humor but this book was not so off the wall that I couldn t enjoy it As a matter of fact the tongue in cheek satire where the book Tajna vještina - Gibonni biografija pokes fun at its own characters and city and life style really made me chuckle No Not the loud guffaw but the chuckle The Yeah I got it chuck chuck chuckle Way to go Pete Dexter I m on my way to read Paris Trout soon In fact I ve already ordered the book and it will be sent to me in short order For all the above reasons I rate this wonderful book with the story set in the 1980s at 45 stars out of 5 and give it a thumbs up I recommend that before all the used copies are snatched up that you grab one and buy it and read it for yourself Thank you for joining me this week as we looked at this cult favorite God s Pocket by Pete Dexter I m glad it is coming to the movies but from what I have seen of therofessional critics reviews of the movie it isn t rated well In fact the metascore is only 28100 It may be another reason for releasing it in Limited Release first so as to test the waters so to speak I hope it does well I don t always agree with 10 Soluciones Simples Para El Deficit de Atencion En Adultos professional critics assessment of movieserhaps you have also had this experience In any event we have to wait and see what happens It would be lovely if one of Mr Hoffman s last movies did well at the box office Such a wonderful actor Thank you for taking time to read my review today Please join me again next week as we take another book into consideration for reading enjoyment and find out whether or not it is sufficiently worthy to spend your money on ick it up and spend your valuable time reading it Until then you couldn t do better than to find a copy of God s Pocket and read it It is relatively short only 279 ages and enjoyable So give it a tryUntil next timemany happy The Tale of Pepper the Pony: Kingfisher Foldout pages of readingAll my love Sharon A JON AND HIS MA BOOK CLUB SELECTIONAs an old newspaperman emphasis on theaper just so we re clear Pete Dexter knows the art of the lead Leon Hubbard died ten minutes into lunch break on the first Monday in May on the construction site of the new one story trauma wing at Holy Redeemer Hospital in South Philadelphia One way or the other he was going to lose the job All the facts followed by a hook to get you on to the next A Lion Among Men paragraphLeon is aersistent est The you don t like him the he likes "Bein Around He Brags Of "around He brags of connected and waves a straight razor around to impress and intimidate his fellow workers who aren t really working Leon takes offense that one guy Old Lucy is on site to get the job done not to admire Leon s razor rowess On one of Leon s especially manic Otis pill addled days he takes his razor to Old Lucy s throat and Old Lucy takes aipe upside Leon s head further scrambling the young man s brains and forever silencing his speed freak chatter The site s foreman Coleman Peets A Speech on the Present Duties and Future Destiny of the Negro Race: September 2, 1872 (Classic Reprint) perhaps feeling white man s guilt forermitting Leon s abuse of Old Lucy for so long tells the Kiss of the Spiderwoman police Leon was killed in an accident involving the construction euipment The other members of his crew go along with the storyInvestigating officer Calamity Eisenhower is crazy enough to run around armed in a bunny suit but that doesn t mean he s oblivious wheneople lie to him In Eisenhower s experience when everybody lied it was usually best to leave it aloneAs it does so often to the undeserving death confers a celebrity sainthood upon Leon To the barflies and blue collar bozos of God s Pocket Leon becomes what the neighborhood stood for Death also magically grants Leon a competence at his job that he never The Mutants Are Coming possessed when alive and on the job Doubts arise Leon didn t just let something drop on his head and kill him Leading the doubters charge is Leon s mother Jeanie Hubbard Scarpato whose life had sorry chapters than the Old Testament Jeanie s story lands in the lap of ace ayhole newspaper columnist Richard Shellburn therinted voice of Philadelphia He s the only guy knows what it s like out here Always ready to fake a human interest story Shellburn still sweating out last night s drunk ays a bleary visit to the grieving widow Shellburn is smitten Jeanie is starstruckJeanie s husband Mickey a small time thief and compulsive gambler dodges his wife s grief and his disapproving donut eating sisters in law by drinking in bars and dozing through horror double features at the grindhouse Mickey s got ressures of his own trying to sell a truckload of contraband beef and recoup all the money for his stepson s burial that he blew at the track good thing he has a refrigerated truckLeon was never really connected as he boasted but Mickey knows a guy who knows some guys who set out on their own ill fated brass knuckled investigation into Leon s death Repercussions mountGod s Pocket is one cynical snarkily venomous takedown of the tribalism of the urban dumbass The only thing they can t forgive is leaving the neighborhood It s raunchy enough that I should have been embarrassed to read it with my mother but she knew the deal with Dexter before she went in Through the course of the book we emailed each other lines we found especially hysterical Before writing his first novel Dexter sharpened his chops as a newspaper columnist and he s definitely not above stabbing his former rofession in the back He comes from an older generation of journalists from the time before newspapers abdicated their responsibilities and linked arms with the broadcast bubbleheads to become the media and together await the vast slack jawed vacuum of extinction via Internet Although the industry has changed much since the 80s when Dexter made his literary debut chain execs and blowhard burnout columnists remain evergreen subjects I won t dwell on the chain saw scene as I d like to keep my day job a little longerFrom his days on the beat Dexter retains the old school crusty eye for human detail the gross hysicality of men the mercenary Witch Is Why The Moon Disappeared pragmatism of women He s freuently hilarious without resorting to the forced wackiness of mugging columnistnovelists such as Dave Barry and Carl HiaasenI d be very surprised if there was anything in this book that wasn t somehow at least inart "Based In Fact Real Events "in fact real events eople There s no such neighborhood as God s Pocket But somewhere out there in Philadelphia I have no doubt there s a God s Pocket Richard Price has this to say about this book and he has nailed it God s Pocket sings snarls mugs wisecracks buys you a drink steals your wallet and takes you home to meet the folks I started following Pete Dexter as a columnist for The Daily News in Philadelphia His stories of what most eople would call the underside of big city life were made incredibly compelling even if you knew the Underground (Unbelievers, people in them wererobably waiting to do you some serious harm There was usually some little gem of writing or a turn of The Letters and Lessons of Teddy Roosevelt for His Sons phrase that made you think about things you thought you knew in a new way I read this uite a while ago as Dexter was turning into a novelist This is an expansion of a true story that kept lifting the rug in different dirty corners of Philadelphia None of the characters come out clean but they weren t really very clean going in In Dexter s able hands that doesn t make them bad or even almost bad It just makes them the characters that we all know are out there Maybe from a neighborhood we try to avoid or from a walk of life that we step around local note the neighborood so beautifully brought to life and death here iswas actually called Devil s Pocket of just theocket for the way it took up the space between several angular avenues on the border of downtown Philadelphia It s retty much gone now art having become uite gentrified and the other The Purposeful Graduate part slipping even farther from any chance at all Enough background If you ve ever lived in a city you know some theseeople like it or not This story kept happening because of the connection between these guys and what would be considered upper crust Phil AH delphians and their considerable foibles Fascinating interplay and a great read I m a fan Mickey Scarpato was 45 years old and did not understand women It wasn t the way bartenders or comedians didn t understand women it was the way Inscriptions for Headstones pooreople didn t understand the economy You could stand outside the Girard Bank Building every day of your life and never guess anything about what went in there That s why in their hearts they d always rather stick up a 7 11He did know by then that nothing would turn the kid around but a chance to run you over twice Peets morning went by a minute at a timeMickey knew from the last five days how it was when all you had for ambition was for time to assTD had been raised underprivil a ground level crime masterpieceFew stories tell the truth of working class wiseguys mobbed up and otherwise as this one with movies like Mean Streets and novels like The Friends of Eddie Coyle being clear antecedents Dexter s writing is undeniably oetic and while it doesn t end as grimly as some similar stories it leaves a rough and undeniable impression Dexter s sense of terror and comedy is firmly in lace in his very first novelThe book follows the impact the random murder of an unrepentant sociopath on the neighborhood he is from and a couple other unfortunate outsiders random murder of an unrepentant sociopath on the neighborhood he is from and a couple other unfortunate outsiders into the events The story told is one featuring ainfully exuisite character sketches brutal comedy and violence and told with eye towards grit and street smarts It reminds me of Nathaniel West Lehane s Mystic River Lehane uses a uote from this book as an epigramRobert Stone Richard Price who rovides a blurb and Robert Altman and Sydney Lumet movies but Pete Dexter feels too original for comparisons. News with the body Everyone that is except Leon’s mother and a local newspaper columnist hoping the story will resurrect his career Only a mother could love a man like Leon But only an outsider could expect to change anything in God’s Pocke.