Three’s a Crowd, a darkly comic thriller by David Benjamin, traces the murder of three wives by their spouses — who meet at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The three homicidal husbands, Rudy, Bud and Chip, hatch their plot in one of Sin City’s erotic fleshpots, the Tough Titty Lounge, and carry them out, gruesomely, in the heart of Paris, Europe’s most exotic and beautiful city.
The story begins moments after each of these conventional, middle-class American men has murdered his wife in a different part of Paris. Rudy, Bud and Chip, rendezvous at the legendary café, La Coupole, to celebrate their liberation and re-live the thrill of homicide.
It’s a hard concept for today’s over-involved soccer moms and dads to grasp, but there was a time in America, say about 50 years ago, when organized sports for kids were not the norm. There were Little League and high school teams, but most kids (and yes, we are talking about boys here, as these were pre-Title IX days) just played sandlot ball or pick-up football — no shoulder pads, cups, helmets, uniforms, referees, meddling parents or permission slips required.
David Benjamin delightfully takes us back to those dear, dead days in his embellished memoir, The Life and Times of the Last Kid Picked. Basing his tales on real things that happened to real people.
A Sunday Kind of Love is a love triangle that entangles an unmarried woman, a married man, and the Green Bay Packers. All of them, in different ways, are revealed, thrilled, plunged into agony and altered forever in the course of this romance. It takes place in Wisconsin, during one of the most pivotal, controversial and dramatic seasons in the Packers’ history, the 2009 season.
Our protagonist is Trish Truschka, a lifelong wallflower who works as a clerk in a fictional state agency, the Bureau of Fallow Properties and Reclamation (BOFPAR), in Madison. She lives in downtown Madison, in a condominium bequeathed by her favorite relative, her Aunt Fanny.
Author David Benjamin approaches the explanation of sumo with a keen eye for the sport’s nuances, but also with tongue in cheek and a sympathy for the reader. His goal is not merely to explain sumo but also to entertain, even if this requires him to digress into realms far distant from sports, including — for example — Victor Hugo’s analysis of the Battle of Waterloo, or Nobel laureate Neils Bohr’s fondness for Western movies.
Readers of Benjamin’s previous sumo book, The Joy of Sumo, as well as his memoir The Life and Times of the Last Kid Picked, have remarked that Benjamin’s style and humor make for a fun read regardless of the topic, and even regardless of whether Benjamin sticks to the topic (as his English teachers constantly begged him to do).