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ONLINE BOOKCLUB REVIEW


Official Review: Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How To Fly?

Post Number:#1 by klbradley » Yesterday, 16:21

http://forums.onlinebookclub.org/shelves/iframe-add-to-wtr.php?id=123113[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of “Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How to Fly?” by Gordon L Kuhn.]

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3 out of 4 stars


Review by klbradley


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Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How to Fly? is Gordon Kahn’s non-fiction novel that takes a look at the disastrous turmoil that one man caused to several innocent people in Manatee County and Sarasota, Florida. The author pieces together the information regarding the attacks, and follows with an extraordinary account of the trial that followed Delmer Smith’s arrest. Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How to Fly? is a true crime story that depicts how one violent man’s actions could cause disaster for many others, and eventually lead him to death row. 

Delmer Smith was born in Detroit in 1971. His introduction into the life of a criminal was started at an early age, and by age fourteen, he was introduced to a juvenile jail cell for a rape conviction at a car wash. His eighteen months behind bars seemed to have little effect on him, as not long after he was released, he went forward with burglaries, bank robberies, and other violent crimes. Smith appeared to live a normal life to his close friends and family, but his violent assaults and robberies carried on throughout Florida starting in 2009, which is where a majority of this story takes place. 

In this riveting story, author Gordon Kahn interviews some of Smith’s victims, relating back the horrific experiences they had to endure. The story seems to come to life when it is told from a first-hand experience, so this was an excellent attribution by the author. The court proceedings were easy to follow, with the author giving an excellent recount of details, like explaining what is happening when the attorneys pause, or the looks that are being given by the jury members. I was exceptionally pleased to see that the author included vocabulary clarification page at the end of the book, and cross-referenced the usage to specific sentences. This allowed me to follow along with ease, despite having to refer to the back of the book. 

The writing style seemed to flow with ease, with only a few minor hiccups in the structure. My complaint with Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How to Fly? comes from the repetition that came along with the story. I can tell the author repeated some sections for clarity, and so that they would be easily remembered, but it seemed that the same points of evidence came in to play five to six times each. There was also a bit of jumping around with the time log, especially once the violent attacks started to become frequent. Some of the background information seemed unnecessary to the story, especially the introductory pages regarding Delmer Smith’s birth. 

My boss currently owns two homes in Florida, one in Bradenton and one in Sarasota. As I avidly watch the news, I was surprised to find that I did not recall hearing of these attacks. I was curious with how closely this story followed along with the news articles, and was pleasantly surprised to learn that the information in the story follows along well with the news articles. There was a mention of another book that continues with this story, and I am looking forward to the release of it as well.

This book has earned a 3 out of 4 star rating from me. The plot moved forward smoothly, but the numerous repetition seemed to make me feel as though I had accidentally lost my place in the book and read the same paragraph numerous times. I can understand the thought behind it, as a way to give clarity and serve as a reminder, but it became an issue with the numerous mentions. This book comes as an excellent recommendation from me for readers who enjoy true crime novels. Because the story depicts fairly recent events, it may be hard for some to read, given the violent nature and attacks that are detailed.

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Predator; The Man Who Didn’t Exist; Do You Know How to Fly? 
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon

 

PREDATOR (Forward & The cast) 12.14.15


FORWARD CONTINUED:

A short-lived smile touched her lips. Her voice lowered, softened. She lit a cigarette, busying her fingers, took a deep draw on it, then blew the first exhale up and away from my direction. “My friends,” she inhaled again. “My family,” she said quietly, more to herself than to me. Her eyes were still looking down and with the palm of her free hand she absent mindedly smoothed her dress. “It was like, you know, I was at fault for some reason. I was the guilty one. That is what they wanted to know.” She took a sip of her tea and looked around at the other lunch customers seated at tables near ours who were, like she and I, enjoying a soft Florida breeze. “Every one of them.” She paused, then added, “‘He was your boyfriend,’ they said to me,” her voice climbed with passion. “Like that gave me some kind of magical insight into the man. It’s all bullshit.” Her eyes dropped to the pavement, then up, fierce, black.

“‘You lived together. And, you are telling me, telling us you didn’t know?'” She thumped her chest with a thumb and turned her head quizzically to look at me. Our eyes met and once more I could not look away. Her chin was high and her eyes, moments before warm and friendly had grown suddenly cold, hard, flinty.

I could see, could feel the emotional intensity that burned inside her. She felt wronged by the very people she thought would have been there for support. She wanted to say to each of them, “What about me? All these questions are about why I didn’t know. What about me? Don’t any one of you who are aware of the relationship that I had with Delmer recognize that I had feelings in this? Don’t you recognize my fear? My bewilderment? My sense of betrayal? Is it only that you want to know why I didn’t know? Well, better yet, if you were around him, why didn’t you know?”

She didn’t need to say those words. I felt them emanating from her heart and soul. I saw them in her eyes, the way she held her head, the silence that surrounded her as she sat and stared into her tea.

This was our first meeting, Michele and mine. However, it would not be the last.

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MAIN CAST OF CHARACTERS 

SARASOTA COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

Sergeant J. Blessee, Patrol Supervisor District Two

Miss Farnsworth, Victim’s Assistance

Detective Rhonda V. DiFranco, Forensics

Detective C. Dusseau

Detective Michael “Mike” A. Dumer

Jessica Hendrickson, Crime Scene Technician

Jessica Jarecki, Crime Scene Technician

Detective B. Keane

Detective M. LeFebvre

Detective K. McGath

Deputy Mrzuack, K-9 Officer

Deputy Josh Pelfrey

Deputy B. Pollock

Sergeant Sirran

Deputy John Swinney

Jessica Sawyer, Forensic Technician

Deputy John Thomas

Detective D. Tuck

Sergeant Daniel Tutko

Detective Sergeant John Walsh

Deputy Wineka, Helicopter Pilot

SARASOTA CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT

Detective DeFrancisco

Detective Linda DeNiro

FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF LAW ENFORCEMENT

Rochelle Gatemen, Supervisor FDLE Bio-Lab, Fort Myers, FL

Shana Hayter, FDLE Crime Laboratory Analyst in Biology and DNA

Michael Rafferty, FDLE Chief of Forensic Services

FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION

Special Agent G. Sandoval

FEDERAL PAROLE OFFICER

Gerri Cotter

CITY OF VENICE, FLORIDA POLICE DEPARTMENT

Sergeant Jason Adams

Officer Guinart

Officer Long

FAMILY, AND ACQUAINTANCES OF DELMER SMITH

Shannon (Bodell) Barrett, landlady

Michele Quinones, former fiancé

Alicia Phillips, niece

Christina Smith, niece

Martha Tejeda, personal friend

STATE OF FLORIDA PROSECUTING ATTORNEYS SARASOTA OFFICE

Elizabeth Scanlan

Earl Varn

DEFENSE ATTORNEY SARASOTA COUNTY

Marjorie Bender

MANATEE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

Detective Kumiko Carter

Detective Edward “Ned” Foy

Robert Feverston, Latent Fingerprint Examiner

Grace Givens, Crime Scene Technician

Andrew Hasty, Deputy

Hurley Smith, Crime Scene Technician

Richard Talbot, Crime Scene Manager

Adrianne Walls, Crime Scene Technician

FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS OF KATHY BRILES

James A. Briles, MD

Calvin Briles, MD

Kristie Gish

Mary Wanser

OTHER MANATEE COUNTY WITNESSES

Michael Bierds, Publix Store Manager

Wilson A. Broussard, Jr. M.D., Forensic Pathologist

Armenouhi Comstock, Owner Armiks Fine Collectibles

Stanley Grubbs, Atrue Lock Service

Kevin Noppinger, DNA Laboratory Manager, DNA Labs International

Istvan Szecsenyi, Owner Roadkill Auto, Inc.

Oliver Young, Duct Tape Product Manager

Victoria Marshall., Sarasota County Victim

STATE OF FLORIDA PROSECUTING ATTORNEYS MANATEE OFFICE

Suzanne O’Donnell

Brian Iten

DEFENSE ATTORNEYS IN MANATEE COUNTY

 Daniel Hernandez

Bjorn Brunvand

This material is protected by a copyright  by Gordon Kuhn  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BLOG CHANGES


I am almost finished with a book I have been working on for 4 1/2 years  now. This book is about a killer, burglar, rapist, sadist, and who is now on death row in Florida. It is over 450 pages written from reviewing over 6,000 pages of documents, multiple interviews with attorneys, cops, victims, his girl friends, and I also met with the killer.

Following this book will come a book written from the diary of a man who spent five years in the late 1910s and early 1920s in Huntsville Prison in Texas.

At the same time I will be writing and publishing one or two new books of poetry and a new book of fantasy.