Author:  D.J. Necterr

Publisher: Poinsettia Publications

ISBN-10: 0615394477 : ISBN-13: 978-0615394473

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The Perfect Gangster is about a successful, narcissistic, self-aggrandizing hustler who relates the story of his life. Successful, of course, is a relative term dependent upon the viewpoint of the person using it.

D.J. Necterr’s definition of successful is making loads of cash from illicit drug deals, ingesting drugs, partying all night long, and getting away it. And in his autobiography he tells the reader how he did it, supposedly. The adverb of demurral (supposedly) sits at the end of the previous sentence for two reasons. First, Necterr ‘tells’ his story. He doesn’t show. He rejects or dismisses the first rule of writing, which is show don’t tell, which gives the book a desultory monotone. The second reason is that the story Necterr tells is so uncluttered by any emphatic, concrete or descriptive detail that the reader begins scanning the contextual horizon for reference points that never appear.

Granted, Necterr did have an interesting life. Intelligent as a child, he soon abandoned academics for the attraction presented by fast cars, fast money, and fast women. Few human beings can resist the siren’s song of the fast life. So it’s easy to identify with Necterr in this regard.

Due to the prevalence of jealous snitches, Necterr ends up in prison. When he gets out, he goes right back to what he was doing before. In fact, that’s the pattern of Necterr’s life. Jealousy, jail, and death threats. After each go round, Necterr returns to his former way of life, only more so. Necterr expands. Necterr evolves. Necterr advances. He gets bigger and better at purchasing and selling drugs. He even adds money laundering to his repertoire.

In the end, Necterr is facing federal RICO charges, death threats, and deteriorating interpersonal relationships. Necterr’s personal life is a mess all the way through the book. He has few friends, and doesn’t trust most of them. And his love-life is a dismal disaster zone. Faced with the mess of his life, Necterr tries to commit suicide. Death by overdose. He lines up a bunch of pills, which he thinks of as “skittles,” and eats them like candy.

Saved by his on-again off-again girlfriend, Vivica, Necterr finds himself lying in a hospital bed, where “Necterr was reborn the day he nearly died.” That is the sum total of his life-changing experience. One sentence. The reader is given nothing else. In other words, the whole book has been building toward this transformational moment, the moment when Necterr sees Jesus or realizes his potential or understands what life is all about or undergoes some kind of spiritual conversion, and pffffft. Necterr lets the air out of the tires.

The Perfect Gangster could have been so much more. But it’s not. Instead, it’s clunky, self-indulgent, self-promoting, and ridiculous. Necterr drops a few names, and then peeks to see if the reader is impressed. Necterr mentions how much money he made and spent and wasted, and then peeks to see if the reader is impressed. Necterr describes death threats against him, and then peeks to see if the reader is impressed. In reality, the only person Necterr is impressing is himself.

What is obvious to the reader from page one is that Necterr is unhappy. Necterr is miserable. Yet never once in the whole book does it ever occur to him why he’s so miserable, and why he has no friends, and why he’s alienated from his family.

And that’s why anyone who reads The Perfect Gangster will come away just as miserable as the guy who wrote the book.

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