Fake I.D.

Fake I.D.

4.6 5
by Jason Starr
     
 

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THERE’S MORE THAN ONE WAY TO LOSE IT ALL AT THE TRACK

A New York bar bouncer with dreams of being more, Tommy Russo jumps at the chance to join a horse-owning syndicate. But to do so he’ll have to pony up $10,000 – and that’s money he hasn’t got. So what’s an ambitious young man to do? Anything he has to…  See more details below

Overview

THERE’S MORE THAN ONE WAY TO LOSE IT ALL AT THE TRACK

A New York bar bouncer with dreams of being more, Tommy Russo jumps at the chance to join a horse-owning syndicate. But to do so he’ll have to pony up $10,000 – and that’s money he hasn’t got. So what’s an ambitious young man to do? Anything he has to…

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Starr (The Follower) traces the life of a New York bar bouncer down on his luck in this sinister noir tale. Tommy Russo, an aspiring actor, wants in on the deal of a lifetime: purchasing a racehorse with several other backers. Gambling addict Russo barely has enough money to buy a burger, let alone contribute 10 grand, so he hocks a girlfriend's jewelry and then moves on to stealing from his boss's safe. Russo's gradual spiral down into complete degeneration is so expertly crafted that readers will be shocked to compare the hopeful actor with his final incarnation as hardened criminal. Starr expertly combines elements of hard-boiled crime novels with a dark view of human nature to create a one-of-a-kind, mesmerizing read. (June)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780857683984
Publisher:
Titan
Publication date:
04/20/2011
Series:
Hard Case Crime
Sold by:
Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
373,399
File size:
822 KB

Meet the Author

The author of the first original novel ever published in the prestigious Vintage/Black Lizard line (Hard Feelings), Jason Starr has won raves for his work from publications ranging from The New York Times to Entertainment Weekly, which compared him to Jim Thompson and James M. Cain. In 2004, he received the Barry Award for his novel Tough Luck, and in 2005 he won the Anthony Award for Twisted City. He also writes comics for Marvel and DC, as well as original graphic novels. He lives in New York City.

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Fake I.D. 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Jonny-Morbid More than 1 year ago
Russo is a scumbag. He wants to be an actor & is nothing more than a bouncer in a crummy bar. He also has a gambling habit which makes him do horrible things to the people who surround him--people who trust him or want something more emotionially from him. Russo loves betting on the ponies & when he gets the chance to be part owner of a race horse, he wants in--doing anything he can to get the money to pay for his share. He steals from his boss, friends--he is just scum. But it's when he commits cold-blooded murder to support his desire to sit in the upper class seats at the race track, the story takes a dive into the darkest reaches of the human condition. Jason Starr has written a great crime novel that soars with prose sprung from the classic pulp novels of days-gone-by. He proves he is worthy to be in the same class as Block, Westlake, Thompson & Willeford. His 1st person narrative keeps you in Russo's dark world--making you squirm as he reveals more of his hideous character flaws. Starr makes Russo a monster without going over the top & this is what makes the novel such a page turner. I believe one of the most revealing scenes--cringingly sad--is when he goes to an audition for a dog food commercial & has a psychotic meltdown. He never admits it is his fault for his failure--everyone else is to blame. Excellent in every way. Fans of dark pulp should pick this one up & spend some time in Starr's world.
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filmnut27 More than 1 year ago
Jason Starr's "Fake I.D." is a twisted novel that rubs you the wrong way while keeping you glued to the pages right up to the very end. It all begins with the lead character Tommy Russo, a 30-something no-nothing bar bouncer living in NYC. Although clearly heading nowhere in life, Russo's ignorant mind dreams of a big unrealistic career in acting. With his self-indulged ego fueling his way of thinking and reasoning, Russo is heavily addicted to gambling, specifically with horse races. Starr sets up his character in first person, but he is careful to not reveal all the true intentions up front. At first Tommy Russo appears cocky and thick-headed, but the longer we're around him we realize he's a little more evil than imagined. For it's the deadly combination of Russo's remorseless way of living as well as his gambling addiction that sets the events of "Fake I.D." into a fast and fatal motion. Scene after scene Russo begins to con all the seemingly innocent supporting characters around him. By the 2nd act the reader is exposed to a rather repulsive protagonist. There's not much to like in Tommy Russo, who carelessly destroys lives in his path for greed. This could easily turn off the reader, but Starr writes with such suspense that it's the whole saving grace for the reader. As you keep reading, you become more addicted into going farther and farther along with Russo, fearing for him as every plot twist and turn comes along, curious to see what will happen next. I kept feeling genuinely nervous and frightened alongside Tommy as his crimes kept on piling up and he kept trying to cover them up. Starr excels in his writing by keeping you turning the pages as fast as possible, especially during the inspired middle section of the story. "Fake I.D." is a terrific novel in the Hard Case Crime series, exhibiting many dark themes of crime and human nature while also presenting a frighteningly-fast storyline. The book cover is also quite inspired, suggesting the correct overtones for the story. While you might not like Tommy Russo at first (or at all), there's no denying the fact that you won't be able to look away. You might not be instantly persuaded by Tommy Russo's exploits, but you'll be conned right along with it seeing if he's able to pull it all off.