Monday, October 12, 2009
Book Review: "Ballad of the Whiskey Robber"
There's a saying that truth is stranger than fiction, well, that saying couldn't be more apt when talking about this book. Ballad of the Whiskey Robber actually has you rooting for the criminal, rather than the law (of whom many were also criminals). It's the kind of book that if you read it and thought it was fiction, you would just say, "That's not a bad story," but knowing that it really happened, made it really fascinating for me to read. With all of his bungled crimes, it's truely amazing that he got away with so much.
If you're a fan of those crime shows where they show the world's stupidest crimes, then this is the book for you...or if you simply like a good story...then you might want to read this too.
Attila Ambrus was a gentleman thief, a sort of Cary Grant - if only Grant came from Transylvania, was a terrible professional hockey goalkeeper, and preferred women in leopard-skin hot pants. During the 1990s, while playing for the biggest hockey team in Budapest, Ambrus took up bank robbery to make ends meet. His opponents: a police chief who learned how to be a detective via dubbed episodes of Columbo; a deputy so dense he was known only by his Hungarian nickname, Mound of Asshead; and a forensics expert-cum-ballet teacher who wore a top hat and tails on the job.
Part Pink Panther, part The Unbearable Lightness of Being, part Slap Shot, this uproariously funny, exuberantly praised book tells the remarkable story of a crime spree that galvanized a forlorn nation and made a nobody into a somebody - a tale so outrageous that it could only be true.