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Battering the Stem by [Freville, Bob]
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Battering the Stem Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 133 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Page Flip: Enabled
Language: English

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Product description

Product Description

It's going to be a long, hellish day on Utica Ave. The employees of Brooklyn's seediest soul food joint, Clayvon's King Prawn Chicken N' Biscuit, have a mysterious new patron: Edgerin. Called a “vagrant” and a “beggar”, he’s got a thing or two to learn them in the delicate art of begging…

Within twenty four tense, bloody hours, all the filthy secrets buried under the nail beds of the Clayvon staff are revealed in this darkly comic urban crime story from author Bob Freville.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 557 KB
  • Print Length: 133 pages
  • Publisher: JournalStone - Bizarro Pulp Press (5 December 2016)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01MXV3BMW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #624,917 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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By Adrian Shotbolt TOP 100 REVIEWER on 8 February 2017
Format: Kindle Edition
'Battering the Stem' is a hard-boiled novella the likes of which I haven't read in some time. Though perhaps not my usual read, I do enjoy dark, crime fiction as a change from my usual diet of horror. Bob Freville is a new author to me but one that I will be keen on reading more from in the future.

A little word of warning: I was quite taken back by the narrative style initially. It's very in-your-face and can seem quite confronting but it's entirely necessary I believe for the type of gritty, violent story that unfolds. If you ever watched ' The Wire' and enjoyed it then I strongly recommend reading this as Freville's street dialect is reminiscent of the show. Freville introduces us to a cast of characters working in a soul food diner in Brooklyn and the bloody turn of events that follow. The diner holds many secrets which reveal themselves quickly as the story unfolds though it is the characters that drive this story. Each of these characters comes to life in very few pages. Edgerin is one of the central characters; a bit of a street bum, a beggar if you like that harasses the workers in the diner, but Edgerin is also an opportunist as you will see when the story unfolds. The other characters are also authentic, brilliantly portrayed not only due to their actions but in the way they converse with each other. Freville's dialogue is snappy, precise and realistic, often amusing, making the story so much more believable. I will admit that I had to read some of the conversations twice as the street-talk took me a bit of getting used to, but in all honesty it's one of the things that makes this novella stand out from other crime books, and let's be honest, It's a competitive market out there so your game has got to be tight.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars 4 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes I like to pick an author I have never heard of ... 5 February 2017
By David Bridges - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
This was a wild card read for me. Sometimes I like to pick an author I have never heard of before and give it a shot. This is the case for Battering The Stem by Bob Freville. Admittedly, it wasn't too much of a risk since the book is being published by Journalstone/Bizarro Pulp Press.

Battering The Stem is one of those books you can't really categorize. It is definitely literary. Freville plays with language and creates some truly bizarre characters, The whole story goes down in a soul food restaurant in Brooklyn. It is comedic but also disturbing. There is even a crime/noir vibe to it. The story centers around the staff of Clayvon's King Prawn Chicken N' Biscuits and a vagrant named Edgerin, who appears out of nowhere after the King's County psych facility closes down. Edgerin starts out psychologically harassing the staff until it eventually escalates into brutal violence. Freville brings some heavy satire in the over the top characters you meet in this story, but amongst the absurdity are some truly insightful things about society. That is the sign of good bizarro writing, at least for me. It is also why I trust Bizarro Pulp Press.

Freville doesn't shy away from taboo subjects and when I realized that I started having flashes of the first time I read Last Exit To Brooklyn by Hubert Selby Jr. One main difference is where Selby's Brooklyn had a lot of heart, Freville's Brooklyn seems more cynical. This is likely due to the time period in which the story is set. The dialog and action are highly entertaining and even laugh out loud funny in some parts. I would definitely recommend this to those that like other Bizarro Pulp Press releases.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 1 January 2017
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
Enjoyable reading from an old Brooklyn native. Obviously written by a person who knows Brooklyn as well.
5.0 out of 5 stars Gritty and dark, but also quite funny. 8 February 2017
By Adrian Shotbolt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
'Battering the Stem' is a hard-boiled novella the likes of which I haven't read in some time. Though perhaps not my usual read, I do enjoy dark, crime fiction as a change from my usual diet of horror. Bob Freville is a new author to me but one that I will be keen on reading more from in the future.

A little word of warning: I was quite taken back by the narrative style initially. It's very in-your-face and can seem quite confronting but it's entirely necessary I believe for the type of gritty, violent story that unfolds. If you ever watched ' The Wire' and enjoyed it then I strongly recommend reading this as Freville's street dialect is reminiscent of the show. Freville introduces us to a cast of characters working in a soul food diner in Brooklyn and the bloody turn of events that follow. The diner holds many secrets which reveal themselves quickly as the story unfolds though it is the characters that drive this story. Each of these characters comes to life in very few pages. Edgerin is one of the central characters; a bit of a street bum, a beggar if you like that harasses the workers in the diner, but Edgerin is also an opportunist as you will see when the story unfolds. The other characters are also authentic, brilliantly portrayed not only due to their actions but in the way they converse with each other. Freville's dialogue is snappy, precise and realistic, often amusing, making the story so much more believable. I will admit that I had to read some of the conversations twice as the street-talk took me a bit of getting used to, but in all honesty it's one of the things that makes this novella stand out from other crime books, and let's be honest, It's a competitive market out there so your game has got to be tight.

After the cast is revealed the pacing is electric and It's during the final third of the book when things really come to life. The ending is superb. I really didn't see it coming at all and to be honest it left me with a real big grin on my face, so well-played Mr Freville, well-played.

'Battering the Stem' isn't going to be a New York Times Bestseller. It's too gritty, too dark and transgressive for most readers of high-street crime fiction and the dialogue makes you work, but for those out there that enjoy dark stories, dripping with grime, bacon fat and violence, this is the book for you. It is also at times very funny and I highly recommend it to readers looking for something different.

4.5/5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars A pivotal relevent transAGGRESSIVE piece of fiction. Brutal, sense bashing, uniquely Frevillian. 19 January 2017
By SweatDrenchedReviews - Published on Amazon.com
Brutally violent. Brutally real. A hard hitting vicious book thats hard hitting politically, a hardened accurate socio-political urban crime drama- with added perversity and bizarre undertones.
Its unique in vision, prose wise its a wholly new take on using phonetic writing to capture - race- stereotypes-characters.

Its hard in so many ways and can be misconstrued and interpreted. So if easily offended or up for a debate on the authors "biased" nature, his perspective and handling on subject matter, as most of important pieces of fiction tend to do - please do, because this will deter you from being able to surmise the authors own standing on evident and most obvious recent societal issues handled with an unapologetic reality.

Transgressive, seedy, darkly disgusting.
A real head spin. I loved it.

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