Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

I post my reviews to:

2 yahoo groups
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I am always looking for more places to post my reviews.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

I, Robot: The Illustrated Screenplay

I, Robot: The Illustrated Screenplay, Harlan Ellison, iBooks, 2004

For a number of years, attempts had been made to bring Isaac Asimov's I, Robot stories to the silver screen. In the late 1970's, the task was given to Harlan Ellison, winner of nearly every major fiction award that is available (except for the Pulitzer and the Nobel). This screenplay is his answer.

Ellison's introduction chronicles the screenplay's journey through the jungles of Hollywood. It actually incorporates several of Asimov's stories into the script. This would have been an incredible movie if it was made (alas, that never happened). It gives the viewer an interesting story, with excellent writing, instead of relying on sex, violence or car chases.

This really is the greatest science fiction movie never made. It is very highly recommended.


Indecent, Ethan Brant, CreateSpace, 2016

Inspired by true events, this book is about one man's journey through the criminal and political underworld of present-day Yugoslavia.

As a teenager, Zlatan (born in Bosnia, raised in Serbia) is sentenced to several years in prison for putting another teenager in the hospital. While inside, he is introduced to the criminal underworld. He becomes friends with an older ex-security agent who he calls "Uncle." He is suddenly let out of prison. Agents of the State Security Service pick him up and make it clear to him that his freedom is not free. He is expected to kill several government opponents living all over Europe. Saying no is not an option.

Zlatan finds it easy to pull the trigger; it does not mean that he likes it. After several such murders, he is under the impression that his obligations to The Service are fulfilled. Zlatan and a couple of friends get into the drug business with money from the robbery of a Cartier jewelry store. After several years of success, one day, The Service calls, and makes it clear that his obligations to them are not fulfilled.

Zlatan spends the next several years as the "power behind the throne" to President Koshtunica, the last President of Yugoslavia and then Prime Minister of Serbia. Zlatan wants, and gets, police protection for his drug shipments. After several more years, Zlatan leaves, and hides with a friend in an isolated cabin, away from everyone. The phone rings.

This is a novella, so it is a quick read. It gives an interesting look inside a very turbulent part of the world. It also has plenty of violence, and it is really good and worth reading.