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Monday, July 1, 2013

Head Wounds by Chris Knopf


Sam Acquillo finds himself o the other side of the law. He has been arrested for the murder of Robbie Milhouser, a local contractor in Head Wounds by Chris Knopf. Sam and Amanda bumped into him and one of his men at a local restaurant. Robbie was chatting up Amanda about construction and ignoring Sam. Things got heated in the restaurant and even more so outside. Cops were called to quell the altercation. Early the next morning, Joe Sullivan, a local cop, wakes Sam to tell him one of Amanda’s houses is on fire. They collect Amanda and hurry down to the scene. It’s all gone and the fire guys determine it is arson. The fact is that the arson isn’t disguised but the identity of the arsonists is. The next thing Sam knows he is being arrested for Robbie’s death with his nail gun and Sam’s footprints all around the murder seen. Jackie and Burton will handle the legal stuff, while Sam is doing his own investigating.
During his down time, Sam revisits his former marriage and fondly reviews those last days. Who would have thought Sam could drive a bulldozer. What a man. During this time of his own arrest we are regaled with past events like his dissolving marriage, his first trip to a boxing gym, and some flashes into his former life. It looks like Sam is going to have to investigate his own case that looks like an easy walk for the DA. Even though Sam knows he is innocent, the evidence says otherwise. Sam has also learned more about Amanda and her first love, Robbie. She has disappeared. Patrick, Robbie’s boisterous buddy is popping up everywhere Sam goes, requiring a police escort home for Sam each night. Sam is wondering about that first evening they all came together while he and Amanda were having dinner when Robbie and his crew approached Amanda about joining forces in the construction game. She said no, get lost, Sam got involved, and then Amanda lost a house to a suspicious fire. It was determined to be arson. And now Sam is accused of murder.
How can’t you like a fellow who thinks and even speaks like this when in a crisis: “There had to be some weighty metaphorical significance in all that, I just couldn’t figure out what it was. Maybe if I kept reading Kant it would come to me. That might be all my memory-impaired, acuity-disrupted, faculty-degraded brain needed. A little philosophy to postpone the inevitable. The preordained moment when the center of the consciousness either shatters or implodes, and like a dying star shrinks down to a dimensionless point, a singularity where time and space, awareness and love, cease to exist.”
Sam is worried about his concussions and after a recent fainting spell gets his head checked out. Boxing has not been god for him as the MRI’s tell it, but he is fine as long as he doesn’t box. That is his plan. It’s the cosmos he needs to stay clear of.

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