When the media circus begins, gangland-bred pollster Jonah Eastman is hired to devise a "P.A.S." (Plausible Alternative Scenario) for the sculptor's death. A beautiful au pair vanishes from Atlantic City, and it's all the media want to talk about – not Bobby. Which angers Bobby because he hasn't gotten this much attention since the Reagan Administration. As he works to vindicate the rocker, Jonah enters the inner-sanctum of the celebrity icon, a world so seductive and lethal that Jonah waxes nostalgic for his days working for the Mafia.
TURNPIKE FLAMEOUT is a black comic ride through the underbelly of mega-stardom and the spins employed by handlers to ensure that crime pays. Quite well, actually.
Eric Dezenhall is the president of Dezenhall Resources, one of the nation's leading crisis management firms. He is the author three other novels, and the nonfiction study Nail ‘Em! Confronting High-Profile Attacks on Celebrities and Businesses. He lives in Bethesda, MD.
"The author's working knowledge of the ins and outs of Vegas lends color and considerable interest to the story" - Publishers Weekly
But the printer is hardly welcoming. While she is trying to talk to him, he catches his hand in the press, and Jo bursts into action. Although she removes the screws from the roller that is clamping the man's fingers and offers to drive him to the hospital, he refuses to go and insists she treat him in his home.
The strange episode leads to Jo's calling daily to attend to the man's injury. She learns that he's living with his daughter—a grown woman who possesses the mind of a child—that they are from New York, and that his wife has mysteriously disappeared. The printer is roughly grateful for Jo's care, but he has much on his mind, and he will not leave his house. Jo begins to suspect he is connected to a recent local murder.
Robin Hathaway rewards her readers with another rich story of the lives of people who live and work in the New Jersey farmland. Sleight of Hand is a worthy addition to this finely crafted series.
THE TART: Simone Lava, the voluptuous Miss Little Egg Harbor Township. Rebound keeps her hidden away in Atlantic City's seedy Celebrity Motel where she practices waving like a First Lady -- a title she's been promised, if she'll just lay low during election season.
THE FIXER: Jackie Disaster, an ex-boxer who runs the Jersey shore's most ruthless damage-control firm. Jackie digs up the macabre truth about the governor.
THE POLLSTER: Jonah Eastman, maverick political strategist raised by his mobster grandfather, who gave Rebound his start. Jonah knows only one thing can save the congenitally deceitful governor: A whopping, heartfelt lie.
Shakedown Beach rips open the slats of the Atlantic City boardwalk to impart the big lesson of American politics: When forced to look into one's soul and confront the painful truths of murder, corruption and sexual depravity, don't be a schmuck -- hire the nastiest operatives money can buy and duck, dodge and spin to November.
So Jonah goes to war through a comical and audacious manipulation of the media which includes online rumoring, exploiting romantic myths of the mob, and orchestrating a union-backed pseudo-vigil after Vanni is arrested. To pull off these stunts, he enlists the help of his grandfather's Prohibition-era cronies, pimply-faced hackers, a disgruntled Secret Service agent, a cagey Washington lobbyist, a slick Philadelphia publicist, and a street-fighting rabbi.
Money Wanders is a wild and uproarious tour of spin and media manipulation from the lobbied halls of Congress to the dilapidated boardwalk of Atlantic City.