BROTHERS IN CRIME: Jesse Damon Crime Novel #5 by KM Rockwood

Brothers in crime: Jesse Damon Crime Novel #5 by K.M. Rockwood

I love stories that find the fault lines in our legal system. Brothers in Crime does that for me with great poignancy. KM Rockwood tells Jesse’s story in a picaresque manner. Jesse started life with all strikes against him and almost ended it at sixteen when he is prosecuted as an adult and forced to plea to a murder he didn’t commit. He’s taken the fall for his two no good brothers who committed the murder robbing a drug dealer. Jesse was the mere lookout. Now at age thirty-six he’s out on parole, working the night shift in a sheet metal factory. A comical, good cop bad cop, pair of detectives harasses him throughout the novel. Whatever crime goes down in the Maryland industrial town where Jesse is trying to get his life together, he is immediately the suspect. Such is the life of a parolee. It’s difficult to go straight with the law looking over your shoulder. To make matters worse he is pursued by a doppelganger. The pair of detectives is convinced that it is Jesse who appears on a security tape when an ATM is robbed. There are sightings of him in other places when he hasn’t been there. Yet his work operating a forklift when the crimes occurred alibis him. He is one of two forklift operators. The other a female is his sometime girlfriend Kelly.

            Brothers in Crime had me on the edge of my seat. Jesse is an innately good man and that made me pull for him each and every time trouble came to find him. Beside the ATM robbery there’s a potassium cyanide leak at the plant. He takes in a domestic violence victim and gets into a fight when her husband comes to get her back. Any one of these encounters could be a parole violation and land him back in prison to serve the rest of his forty years. His sometime girlfriend Kelly abuses alcohol and uses him as a babysitter while she goes off to AA meetings but instead gets involved with a pornographer. Jesse has bonded to her children and makes an incredible difference in their lives. The novel is peopled with caring characters. Jesse inspires that. Rockwood uses his goodness to heighten the suspense. It’s a nice writing technique. I didn’t think I would bond with a parolee the way I bonded to Jesse.

Sarah Levine Simon





I’m a proponent of the notion that soaking and sprouting grains helps to realize their full flavor. In addition, much research suggests that sprouting enhances the health benefits of grains by breaking down certain compounds that interfere with digestion.

In a sprouting jar with sieve lid soak two cups of whole grain kasha (buckwheat) in water and a tsp apple cider vinegar overnight.
Drain, rinse then turn jar upside down in a colander. In twenty-four hours the buckwheat is ready to proceed with any recipe you like.

My grandma Ida broke an egg into the drained buckwheat and stirred until all of the grains were coated. Then she heated a skillet with shortening (Schmaltz) to which she added a minced onion, diced mushrooms, the buckwheat mixture and stirred over medium heat until you could see the integrity of each and every grain. Then she added two cups of…

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kale massaged
Kale salad is versatile. The wilting is actually desirable because it softens the kale leaves making them more digestible. This version is from my friend Anne Lancellotti, a doctor of physical therapy. She literally massages olive oil and garlic into the kale.

Wash a large bunch of leafy green kale to remove grit. Tear leaves off of thick stem and break them into bite-sized pieces. Dry. Then drizzle with a few tablespoons of olive oil and with both hands knead the oil into the kale. Crush several cloves of garlic and work them in with your hands also. You want the oil to distribute evenly over the kale leaves. Juice a lemon. Add and mix. I like a combination of citrus juices and a bit of cider vinegar. At this point I add some salt and pepper. Anne adds dried cranberries, I add an organic trail mix that contains, dried…

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