Is it possible for entertainment to go too far? Everyone loves a good police story, but most like the bad guy to be well defined, the good guy to be a hero, the police to honor the public trust, and the evidence to define the truth in the end. Of course, the real world is a different story. Efforts have been made to create police dramas with a flair of realism. Police procedural novels such as The Untouchables and gritty urban stories such as The Wire and The Corner use advisors to enhance accuracy. The dark and gritty novel, Eliot, feels startlingly real, revealing what really goes on in a urban police department while telling a fictional story, because it was written by a Baltimore Police Sergeant and former major case narcotics detective.
Much of the controversy over Eliot was first mentioned publicly in the article Fantasies of Justice, by Michael Corbin, in the Urbanite Magazine. Corbin notes that Eliot "takes its insider knowledge of Baltimore and Baltimore police very seriously," and "should find an eager audience among those that take their own knowledge of and desire for Baltimore crime stories seriously," but goes on to voice concern. The incredibly detailed information and portrayal of the vigilante provides insight to criminals and possible motivation for copycat crazies. Corbin also needs to, "voice a little queasiness about this whole artistic enterprise" because the author, Michael A. Wood Jr., has also written leadership guides for police supervisors and promotional candidates.
There are also questions about how much in Eliot is true. Wood admits that much of Eliot is based upon true events, and it certainly has an overall feel of plausibility. While remaining ambiguous over what is true and what is fiction, the door is left to wonder how much corruption Wood has witnessed or been a part of and should a current supervisor be revealing these things?
As Daniel Vale of the Baltimore Examiner stated, "'Eliot' is an exciting novel that helps readers to understand police procedures, the vigilante mindset, and crime in Baltimore ." Spread the word and let the fans of Baltimore know about their new hero, or villain.
Michael A. Wood Jr. joined the USMC at 17 and was a Sergeant in the 2nd Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Team out of Yorktown, Virginia. After serving his country abroad, Mr. Wood applied to serve his country at home and is now a Sergeant in the Baltimore Police Department, but will soon be a victim of the no-limited-duty policy that the BPD adapted a few years ago. After suffering a line-of-duty injury and having his shoulder surgically repaired, he will be retired from the BPD within a year. Obsessed with always learning, Mr. Wood attended BCCC, was a distinguished scholar with a 4.0 GPA, then received a B.S. in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement from Kaplan University, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a 3.99 GPA. Mr. Wood is also a member of the Alpha Phi Sigma, Alpha Beta Kappa, and Golden Key Honor Societies. Most importantly, Mr. Wood is a happily married family man with the greatest daughter in the world.
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Eliot, By: Michael A. Wood Jr.
ISBN:1470099845 / 9781470099848
What defines justified transgressions?
Available at local bookstores, Atomic Books and Constellation Books and from many online retailers including Amazon.com in Trade Paperback, Large Print, or Kindle at: http://www.amazon.com/
Michael A. Wood Jr.