From his woodland bunker in Michigan, Bo ‘Big Bruddah’ Watts has assembled a scratch army of gun-toting militiamen, and he’s ready to use it. Rumours are circulating that the liberal, female President of the USA is going to fight climate change by banning beef, snatching the great American hamburger from the mouths of patriots.
Big Bruddah missed the last militia uprising. That one, sparked by a conspiracy theory about a deadly virus and stolen cheese recipes, ended in failure when his now ex-wife, Miky Spike, stopped the potentially bloody conflict at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Wisconsin.
He is determined to stop the president, with the help of eccentric octogenarian Wilbur Tuttle, who runs Silver Eagle Security, the private military enterprise owned by the hapless former governor of Michigan, Bill Hoeksma.
The plan is to launch a coup in Tampa, Florida by kidnapping the President’s daughter and then installing Hoeksma as a puppet President.. With the support of Silver Eagle’s best men, Big Bruddah and Tuttle hope to ignite the long-awaited insurrection militia members call the “boogaloo.” What could possibly go wrong?
What I Thought:
After the first few pages of The Great American Boogaloo, I really wondered what on earth I was reading! I’m so glad I stuck with it though, as it’s both black comedy genius and a timely warning about the power of conspiracy theories.
Although we all like to think that we can’t be easily swayed by outlandish stories in the press, we are all susceptible to believing stories that feed into our worldview, so when Big Bruddah Watts reads that the female President of the US – who he and his militia are determined to hate anyway – wants to ban beef, and snatch away the Great American Burger, his plans to stage a coup are put in motion.
The book flits between Big Bruddah and his group as they travel across the US to put their plan in action, and a number of other interested parties, including Wilbur Tuttle of Silver Eagle Security and Bill Hoeksma who is not overly blessed in the brain department, but thinks it would be kinda nice to be installed as the President. As we meet this characters and the narrative builds, it becomes more and more like a screwball comedy, capped off when all these folks who don’t believe in climate change are delayed in their efforts by that very thing – extreme weather events!
There not much more of the plot I can go into without giving things away, but this really was a rewarding book – it was hilarious in places and horrifying in others and went some way to explaining just why some of those folks that – for example – follow Trump do so, and how they are whipped up into a frenzy by any perceived assault on their ‘freedom’.
There is a book that comes before this one – The Great American Cheese War – and, while it might give you some valuable background, you don’t need to have read it first. I’m going to go back and grab it because I really enjoyed Paul Flower’s writing and his unique take on the culture war that’s currently going on in the US.
The Great American Boogaloo is published by Farrago Books.
About the Author:
Paul Flower was born and raised in Michigan and still resides there. He has been writing professionally for more than 40 years. While much of his career has been spent in advertising and marketing, he worked in broadcasting for a short time. Paul has one previously published novel to his credit, and his writing has appeared in national and regional magazines. He and his wife have four grown children and a rapidly evolving number of incredibly beautiful and intelligent grandchildren.
This post is part of a blog tour to celebrate the publication of The Great American Boogaloo – for more reviews and exclusive content, check out the participating blogs below:
Please note: I was sent a copy of this book for review. All opinions are, as ever, my own.