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Sunday, August 18, 2019

Review of The Devil Who Raised Me by Robert Cooperman

If you like old fashioned western stories, where hard scrabbled virtues and youthful spirit go unrewarded and tragedy begets more tragedy, you’ll love Richard Cooperman’s The Devil Who Raised Me. Cooperman’s fictional antihero, John Sprockett, brought up by a doting mother and Jesus-loving hypocrite father, devolves from childhood innocence into a stone cold killer in antebellum Missouri. Along the way Cooperman breathes vitality into a cast of larger-than-life characters, some of whom abet evil, some who cherish goodness, and some who do both.

 Cooperman conveys his story through colloquial verse. The episodic poems center intensity on individuals or actions and then gallop at breakneck speed to the next tale. Each character is thickly lined, so thickly lined in the way of cartoons or myths that the reader must choose his or her path of perception.  Myth wins out. Cooperman’s dramatis personae rise to lofty and detailed heights or fall to nightmarish destruction. For more of my review of The Devil Who Raised Me go here:  http://dougholder.blogspot.com/2019/08/the-devil-who-raised-me-by-robert.html

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