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Dialogues of a Crime by John K. Manos
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Dialogues of a Crime (edition 2013)

by John K. Manos

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375306,014 (3.57)4
Member:weisbardaj
Title:Dialogues of a Crime
Authors:John K. Manos
Info:Amika Press (2013), Kindle Edition, 301 pages
Collections:Your library, Kindle & Ebooks
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Dialogues of a Crime by John K. Manos

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In 1972, nineteen-year-old Michael Pollitz, a college freshman in central Illinois, was asleep in his dorm when he was awakened by a bang on the door and two men entering his room. One of them looked at him, said “That’s him,” and they arrested him. Michael had no idea why and they wouldn’t tell him the reason, but when they walked out, he saw several other students he knew were also being arrested.
He knew the others were all involved in drug sales. He used drugs occasionally but had no connections with distributing them. It turned out that one of the policemen had gone into the dorm and Michael had shown him to the room where the detective purchased some drugs. Michael was considered to be an accomplice. In all, ten men, mostly college students, were arrested. The college paid their bail expecting to be reimbursed. Michael’s father, a plumber had no idea where he would get the money to repay the debt nor to pay for an attorney for his son.
From the time they were in fourth grade, Michael’s best friend was John Calabria. John’s father, Dom, was a Mafia leader. Dom offered to get Michael a good attorney, but Michael’s father, refused any help, especially from him. Even though they were much more heavily involved in the drug trade, the more wealthy students were able to get good lawyers and have their charges reduced. Michael’s father said he should use the public defender the school suggested. Not wanting to disrespect his father, Michael agreed. The lawyer, a friend of the college president, had no experience defending a case in court or working with an innocent defendant. He convinced Michael to plead guilty so he would get a better deal and have his record expunged. Michael did so. It was a disaster.
Michael was sentenced to a medium security facility for between thirty and ninety days, then placed on probation for two years. Behind the scenes, Dom contacted some people he knew to ask them to protect Michael. The request came two late. After being locked up for a little more than a week, Michael was seriously attacked by three men. He spent several weeks in the hospital and then was released. He was very angry with his father and, upon release, told Dom what he hoped would happen to each of the three.
The book moved to 1994. One of the three men was arrested and tried to use information from the 1972 case to reduce his punishment for his recent crime. While checking the man’s story, both Dom’s and Michael’s names came up. It looked like an opportunity to land a very big fish. The police located Michael and try to get him to turn on Dom. Michael told them what he knew (he knew he is not a good liar) but he really knew very little. But some of the members of the Mafia became worried about what was being said about them.
DIALOGUES OF A CRIME is a fast and engrossing read. It’s well-written and includes comments about how people with money have an advantage when caught up in the criminal justice system. John K. Manos also explains how “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” was a positive development regarding how to treat crimes. The reader gets to know the characters, some good, some bad and see how they change or don’t change over time. Some do appear to be stereotypes. We feel Michael’s frustration and understand how that 1972 arrest affected him the rest of his life.
This book was a free Amazon download ( )
  Judiex | Sep 29, 2015 |
I got to the 7% mark and quit. Using God's name in vain is enough for me but the author continued on in vulgar language. I've heard them all and still don't appreciate reading it in print. The part I read was a little slow and every 2 or 3 paragraphs was a chapter. ( )
  MSgtMackel | May 25, 2015 |
The fact that this cover looks like something you would have for a college class is intentional I would think. The story begins with a college student and turns into a psychological study of his supposed crime and its far-reaching effects.

Nineteen year old Michael J. Pollitz awakens in his dorm room to pounding on his door. Confused, he is summarily identified and arrested for a felony. It turns out his "crime" was showing a man to a room in the dorm where he could buy drugs. Pollitz didn't participate in drug dealing and only occasionally used them. He was a promising student on scholarship in a small Illinois school where the majority came from wealthy families. His father was a plumber.

Despite an offer of help from his best friend's father, "the" mobster in Chicago, Pollitz bows to his father's wishes and uses the public defender. In prison he is beaten almost to death by three punks and raped by two of them. Upon his release he is picked up by the mobster. He then returns to finish his degree and goes on to a less than satisfying career in advertising.

This book is how that episode and his friendship affect his life until years later when he and a cop spark deep reflection in each other about love, loyalty, whether anyone deserves to be killed, the evil that exists in some men, and the real worth of work. Both had survived tragedy and come out on the other side changed forever, both are smart and inclined to introspection. These are fascinating characters, as are the mobsters. Manos makes gentle fun of their way of speaking like movie Mafia enforcers. The boss though is a complex character and more difficult to figure out. The major question though is how Pollitz can justify his loyalty to such a man, yet be aware of the evil done by him.

Klinger the cop reminds me a bit of Columbo. I loved him and his girlfriend Dora, both overweight middle-aged people who enjoy one of the best relationships I've seen in fiction in a long time. But Michael Pollitz is the mystery here. Has his life been stunted by his rape, his deep disappointment in his father, his lack of ambition just a sign that life pretty much ended for him in 1972 in prison?

I'm so glad I read this book. It's so totally different from anything I've read in ages. No action, no unbelievable escapades, no big heroes, just the conundrum of Michael Pollitz's life. Don't take this one to the beach; save it for a rainy evening with no distractions.

Highly recommended
Source: Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours ( )
  bjmitch | Jul 11, 2014 |
More than a crime novel. The strength of this novel is the author's portrayal of character. ( )
  jpollitz | Jun 8, 2014 |
Dialogues of a Crime is a mystery involving a young man who happens to be kind of in the wrong place at the wrong time. While in college in 1972, Michael is arrested for 'walking' a DEA agent to another dorm room to buy drugs. He of course did not know that the guy was an agent and a few weeks later he is arrested, along with others in a drug bust of the dorm. Even though he keeps telling them that he doesn't sell drugs he is charged anyway. Michael has been good friends with John Calabria whose father is head of the mob (Outfit) in Chicago and Dom Calabria insists that Michael use one of his lawyers, but Michael's father insists he use a public defender, which he does and takes a plea bargain that gives him sentence of a maximum of 90 days. His stay there in not pleasant as he is beaten and raped by three inmates.

1994 Detective Larry Klinger is investigating a cold case of a couple former inmates were found murdered. The trail leads him to Michael and from there the clues mount up. Did Michael have anything to do with these murders? That is what Larry is determined to find out. He is suspicious of Michael because of his ties to the Calabria family, but as he gets to know Michael he is no longer sure of his assessment of him.

This is a murder mystery spanning events that happened to Michael in 1972 to 1994.Full of Soprano like characters or Soprano wanna be's. I love a good mystery and this one is in that league, fast paced full of family dynamics, suspense and justice, maybe not the right kind, but mob justice. ( )
  celticlady53 | May 27, 2014 |
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