reviewed by Storeybook Reviews
I truly enjoyed reading Fixer and getting a taste of
what it was like in the early 1900's in New York and what it was like
to be an immigrant and Jewish on top of that. Politics were a whole different
game back then and it was fascinating to learn about positions that don't
exist any more, but perhaps they should.
The author takes you through a very historic period in New York and the
dark and seedy underbelly of politics. While the book is fiction, there
is some truth to the story. He weaves a tale that makes you feel like
you are there and living in that moment and can imagine what it was like
to be an immigrant at the turn of the century.
This story really grabbed me and kept me entranced with the characters
and how they overcame adversity for their time.
I definitely recommend this book and give it 2 thumbs up!
Ed was also kind enough to let me interview him for this review.
SBR: What made you decide to write a book loosely based on your Grandfather's
EB: My grandfather was the most extraordinary human being I've ever met.
His story is remarkable and yet no one alive today knows who he was. That
has always disturbed me. For about 40 years, I've thought about telling
the story. Why it came avalanching out when it did - about five years
ago - I am not really sure, but better late than never. Incidentally,
I would have written a memoir if I'd been in possession of enough facts,
but I wasn't so I made most of it up.
SBR: How long did it take you to research the facts you needed for your
novel and then write the novel itself?
EB: I did all the research and wrote the first draft in seven weeks. It
just came flying out. Whoosh! Then I spent two years polishing it.
SBR: What is your biggest obstacle when writing and how do you overcome
EB: I am a wonderful story teller but my style is economical (which I'm
proud of, by the way). Sometimes I gloss over the details. My solution
is to (1) carefully organize my ideas and outline the chapters; (2) do
lots of research; and (3) answer the question, "What does the reader want
SBR: What actors would you choose to play your main characters in a movie
version of your book?
EB: Everyone tells me that Fixer would be a great movie. For Harry Leonnoff,
I could cast Daniel Day-Lewis (I have a feeling he would ace it), Russell
Crowe, Tom Hanks, or Nicholas Cage (he seems to understand that New York
ethnic thing). For Fiorello, Jack Nicholson (he'd be great because he
is short and has a great sense of humor), Paul Giamatti, Joe Pesce, or
SBR: Who are two of your favorite authors and what are you reading now?
EB: Jim Harrison and Hemingway, both fabulous story tellers. I'm reading
Off to the Side by Jim Harrison.