Reviews in 200 Words

God’s Pocket by Pete Dexter (1995) Reviewed by Steven Woods

In Novel (Guest Punch by Steven Woods) on December 15, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Think Eddie Haskel transformed from ass-kisser to failed egoist with a penchant for mock-bravado.  It’s not hard to believe that just because Leon Hubbard is largely hated by his almost incestuous community, his mother thinks the world of him. Don’t villains always have loving mothers? It’s not hard to believe that when he turns up murdered, not many are too broken up to put him in the ground. “You ever climbed out on a roof and look down, and for just a breath somethin’ inside you said, ‘Jump’?  Leon Hubbard is what that voice looks like.”  Pete Dexter puts you right in the middle of the murder scene – tells you, “who dunnit” – and then bends the constructs of morality in on itself to make you wonder where karma fits into the grand scheme of things.  Or, if karma fits in at all. But – assuming Leon Hubbard got what was coming for him – the ripple effect sweeps through the entire neighborhood of God’s Pocket in Philadelphia where it’s them against everyone else.  It’s life against death. It’s family; and you protect family, no matter what.  

-Steven Woods


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