Thursday, September 3, 2009

You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Kills You-Robert J. Randisi

You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Kills You
Robert J. Randisi
Minotaur, Sep 15 2009 $24.99
ISBN: 9780312376437

In 1962 in Las Vegas, the Rat Pack turns to Sands Hotel pit boss Eddie Gianelli to get them out of embarrassing situations as he has done for them before (see HEY THERE, YOU WITH THE GUN IN YOUR HAND). Dean Martin asks Eddie to help a remorseful and frightened Marilyn Monroe; the sex symbol fears she drove Clark Gable to an early grave during the shooting of The Misfits while also believes someone is stalking her.

Dino further explains MM is a child in a woman’s body so suggests he treat her as such. Eddie investigates Marilyn’s claim of being followed. Soon he runs into some nasty thugs though neither he nor his associates can figure out who these punks work for and why Miss Monroe is the target. He detours to the East Coast while one of Eddie’s buddies P.I Danny Bardini vanishes and the other Jerry is beaten and has to be hospitalizated at a time when JFK is coming to Palm Springs allegedly to see Frank.

This is a fun Rat Pack tale as the expatriate Brooklyn dodger Gianelli once again protects the extended “family” of the famous drinking buddies. The story line is fast-paced, but predominantly focuses on Eddie and his two associates as they protect the eldritch like Miss Monroe from her troubles; many of which are in her head. The Rat Pack mostly plays cameo roles, but fans of the series know that they will relish another fine historical mystery as the Brooklyn Bums continue to take star billing over the Rat Pack in Vegas.

Harriet Klausner