By Philip Becnel
Genre: Contemporary fiction
FREEDOM CITY is an anti-Trump satire that pays homage to The Monkey Wrench Gang.
After Donald Trump unceremoniously dies from natural causes, four misfits from Washington, D.C. who call themselves the Fearless Vampire Killers sever the heads of Confederate statues and wage a comedic guerrilla war on post-Trump America. When President Pence enlists droves of fascist volunteers to crush the “alt-left” uprising, the rebels must risk their lives to run the fascists out of D.C.
What follows is not only a battle for survival—but a desperate search for remnants of what once made America great.
I find myself writing this review after just removing myself permanently from the pages of facebook for the abject absurdity of their ‘policies and procedures’ so it is the perfect time for me to pen a critical analysis of this stunning novel. FREEDOM CITY is a bleak glance into a dystopian alter-america not far removed from this one, set in the very near future. Our HEROES, the Fearless Vampire Killers, are launched into a desperate last stand in a country lost in the mire of rampant nationalistic capitalism masking itself as ‘patriotism’, after the death of Trump and rise of the Pence presidency (shiver). The character development of each member of our dear Fearless Vampire Killers individually makes you love every hair on their revolutionary heads, and the melodic and hilarious flow of plot is entrancing! As a counter-point, the ‘bad guys’ fill the reader with animosity and dread, not unlike the cast of characters we find ourselves encountering on the daily now. Richly descriptive, blunt, poignant, funny, complex, beautifully textured, and brilliantly scripted. How many more adjectives can I throw at this fine novel? If you are a fan of suspense, crime noir, action-adventure, or highly literary fiction, then this is a book for you! On a personal note ~ As an active member of the ‘alt-left’ in this, OUR country, I am adding this novel to my small but powerful collection of books that I will keep until I perish. I will refer to it often, as a primer, or for inspiration. I sincerely hope our future does not parallel the scenario of this novel (well, maybe some of it, winking eye), but if it does, thank you so much, Mr. Becnel, for lighting the path. For action. As I write this, Woody Guthrie is on the radio singing ‘This land is your land’. Sometimes all is right with the universe. SIX STARS.
About the Author
I was born in San Francisco and raised in Cotati, California, but I spent my formative years in New Orleans and then Northern Virginia. I now live in Washington, D.C., where I've been a private detective for almost twenty years.
FREEDOM CITY, an anti-Trump satire about resistance to American fascism, is my debut novel, but some years ago I published two nonfiction books about investigating: Introduction to Conducting Private Investigations and Principles of Investigative Documentation. I've also published articles in a variety of legal and popular journals, including Time Magazine.
Excerpt (First paragraph):
Despite the odium and widespread condemnation of Donald J. Trump, 45th President of the United States of America, he passed with all the fanfare of a fart in a mesh sack. Medical examiners said it was a thrombotic stroke, likely exacerbated by obesity and high blood pressure. Some said cocaine and opioids had been found in his system, but these reports were never confirmed. Trump was dead, and now it was time to start glossing over his dismal legacy and perpetuating his vision, posthumously, for Making America Great Again…