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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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08/07/2004 Archived Entry: "Comic review: Brownsville OGN Preview"


Brownsville

Written by Neil Kleid, art by Jake Allen
196 pages
To be published in 2005 by NBM Publishing

"'Jewish gangster' isn't a term you hear much in post-Holocaust society... but back when the Dodgers played in the East and licorice cost a penny a bag, Brooklyn corners were lousy with semitic young toughs looking for adventure and excitement - none more so than in Brownsville."

Reviewed by Laurel Sutton

I want to tell you all to run right out and buy this book - I like it that much. But you CAN'T, because what I'm reviewing is a 14-page preview that I got at Comic-Con. The actual book, a 196-page graphic novel, will be out in 2005 and even thought that's like 6 months away, I really really want the book NOW, please.

I love gangster stories, probably because my mother is an Italian lady from Brooklyn and at one time dated a semi-made man ("I didn't like him. He tried to boss me around."). The Italians always get the lion's share of attention for running the Business in the early 20th century, but their Jewish counterparts were just as active. This graphic novel tells (will tell?) the story of two who were members of Murder Incorporated, the Mafia's enforcement arm.

In these 14 short pages we get the cinematically drawn and elegantly scripted story of Allie Tannenbaum's first meeting with Louis Lepke Buchalter, when Tannenbaum was just a boy working at his father's country club in the Catskills. Allie knows who he's talking to, knows they're killers, but he can't help but be dazzled and tempted by their power, their friendly ways, their insistence that he not be a sucker. He's a good boy, and he listens to his father's warning, but we know from the start where he'll end up, getting orders to kill in the back room of a Brownsville candy store.

If you didn't snag a preview copy, there's a note at Neil Kleid's site that says:

Retailer preview requests and press requests/releases can be obtained by emailing neilkleid@aol.com. Black and white preview copies of the book can be obtained via snail mail or FTP.

So go ahead and ask him for one if you want to see how great this will be. Don't be a sucker.

Replies: 3 comments

Just came across this review - thanks for picking up a preview copy of the book - glad you liked it.

Trust me... Jake just sent me pages 50-84 and I want the book now, too ;)

Neil Kleid
www.rantcomics.com

Posted by Neil Kleid @ 08/09/2004 10:18 AM PST

My longtime friend Jake Allen is the artist working on this book with Neil. Their devotion to this project has been second to none. The story is very interesting, and the artwork brings this book to life in the way that great art should. Buy this book, and recommend it to a friend, you will not be dissapointed.

Posted by Jon George @ 08/14/2004 01:11 PM PST

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Posted by Editor @ 01/08/2006 07:28 PM PST

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