Review by Thomas The Tinker
A short review of the book “Unintended Consequences” by John Ross, c/r. 1995 Accurate Press. 861 pages. ( Note: This posting is in no way in fact, inferred, or implied to be a submission in MD’s contest! )
This tome came with a dust cover depicting a swat clad fella man… handeling Lady Liberty… the poor lady was in the midst of a wordrobe malfuncition. Rather tacky dust ‘cover’ on this book. But I would be the last to judge a book by… a tacky dust cover, so I threw it out and took a dive into this one.
What turned out to be the ‘Hook’ in this work for me is page 9s “Author’s Note – A warning and Disclaimer”. It sounded rather trite and hype until I finished on page 861. I had no idea how this work would draw me into it. John Ross (here after, JR) ties “Unintended Consequences” together with a well done mix of historical fact. JR builds fictional characters around the personas of people we all have known in our lives both present and past. His License in this is never poorly done and only enhances the reader’s view of the true person’s character to the reader. Adolph Topperwein and his wife Plinky, the Bowmans, Irwin and Magda Mann, the who’s who of Guns and Ammo lore. So many others you will, at times, be amazed at how the time lines of history are peopled by those you yourself remember. JR takes the reader all over the United States and parts of Europe while connecting the ‘dots’ for you in ways that make you feel … sense .. that you have been there… done that. JR’s work will quickly make you that ‘Fly on the Wall’.
We all have mental ‘triggers’ that send our ‘mind’s eye’ back to places and events. Smells, sounds, sights ‘trigger’ real time emotion in us all. For me, it is the smell of wet… new cut grass or the sounds of rain in the trees. Poof … it is a time not long enough ago in a ‘galaxy’ not far enough away with the crackle of small arms fire and bad fitting.. damp.. green cloths. Think through your life … what are your ‘triggers’? JR has a knack for prose that flash you back even if it only the history that you… have… read. As I wrote above, couple that with his blend of people you do know… and you quickly begin to live inside this story.
Do be warned that JR has included more than enough gratuitous sex in this book. Am I to old and boring… or was it too much… you decide. These injections of sex seem more like commercial breaks than plot line and are one of two things that mar this books continuity. JR does get rather ‘preachy’ when he covers a point of view… opinion. Not as prolific as Ayn Rand’s philosophy, but you’ll see what I mean. Oh… that was the other one.
Many a short chapter is more instructional that prose. Page 479 and the story of “Joe Columbo’s attempted murder”. Irwin Mann and his actions in the Warsaw Ghetto. The FBI shoot out with Michael Platt and Matix. There is a problem here for me as I could go on… and on with these examples. You will be able to take a name and date and Google more information than I (for one) know any ‘right thinking bureaucrat’ would care to have you know. I always read a book once for affect and twice for detail. If it is that good a work I take my tabs and highlighters to the couch with it the third time. My shelf copy resembles a Pharmacy Majors Organic Chemistry text. I was asked to loan it to a work mate … I bought a second copy and the fella didn’t return it. I have picked up a hard to find and pricey third copy and have loaned this one to the point of ‘Dog Eared’ condition.
I get excited about any work that ‘excites’ the mind and stimulates conversation … otherwise left to ‘myself’… or with my special friend. That is to say conversations far… far right of political correctness. This book by John Ross is not something you would want found on your slush pile should the Federalies kick in your door. This book has an unbleached bias with regard to the gun culture and the role of Government in our lives. This work has had “Unintended Consequences” in my thinking. This work IS considered Sedition by a good number of the Federal Agencies and Departments depicted in its 681 pages. If you doubt my ‘warning’ then read up and I’ll be happy to discuss any suggestions, comments, questions or death threats you may care to tender. Another Warning here. Current copies are listed at over $700.oo new and nearly $300.oo used.
One really must ask themselves why this is? You will have to hit the shows or the web to find one……….. unless… and finally.. I get my ‘loaner’ back.