Monday, August 2, 2010
Get to Know Raheim Brooks
Rahiem Jerome Brooks is the breakout novelist with an overwhelming reservoir of criminal tales that motivate American denizen to be overprotective with their personal data, i.e. social security number, pin number, and account number. He contributes articles and commentary to Oak Lane Magazine, as well as on his web site.
Since 1995, Rahiem Brooks has done hundreds of interviews with con men and swindlers in county, state and federal prisons; after all, he was locked down in them, too. He spawned tougher white collar crimes law and the Truncated Act. Hollywood blockbusters like Ocean’s Eleven and Italian Job that do not affect ordinary citizens are nothing more than entertainment. Through fictional accounts of his former crimes, Rahiem conveys the types of white-collar crimes that obstruct the livelihood of identity theft victims, by chronicling how con men acquire someone’s identity profile from an avaricious car salesman or medical records specialist for a small fee, and commences to rob the national economy to the tune of 14-billion dollars a year.
Rahiem’s novels prompt retailers to thoroughly scrutinize every transaction, and not to allow a teenager to use the credit card in the name, Dr. John Warwick. Sounds absurd, and it is; however, successful swindlers like Rahiem has used credit cards with the last name Romanovski, Wu, and Philippidis. A glimpse at Rahiem’s photo evidence, he is not a Wu.
Some of Rahiem’s other soon-to-be published books include: CON TEST (Prodigy Publishing Group), MR. 357 (Prodigy Publishing Group), and DIE LATER (Prodigy Publishing Group), the sequel to the soon-to-be released, LAUGH NOW (Prodigy Publishing Group).
Rahiem Brooks plans to continue his Film/TV certificate program at University of California, Los Angeles, and currently lives in Philadelphia building his Prodigy Publishing Group brand.
LAUGH NOW is the story of Kareem Bezel, whom by 22-years-old has made it to the top rung of the New York fashion industry; and, he has done everything to get there, including: fraud, theft, receiving stolen property, theft by deception, embezzlement, and identity theft. His crafty spree of thievery props his older brother, Andre Bezel’s illicit drug business into the cross hairs of corrupt DEA Agent Lucas McKenzey.
Set in Philadelphia and its suburbs, LAUGH NOW, proposes that, although you’re taken out the ghetto, if you were born to be a hustler, that’s what you’ll do. The story shifts to New York, where the brothers attend Columbia and New York Universities. But before they graduate, Andre is under suspicion for murder, a rogue city councilman is poisoned, and Andre’s first business partner—a white kid, who worked for McKenzey—has been tortured and murdered. LAUGH NOW has all the elements: erotic sex, controversial club scenes, lavish shopping spree, murderous robberies, dangerous high speed chase, and something novel to urban fiction: white collar crime, highlighting a whole new form of trickery. By LAUGH NOW’s end, the brother’s a have a well crafted story to tell prosecutors: “Agent McKenzey made us do it, or he planned to arrest us like he did our dad.”
The weight that crushed BG’s shoulders had been lifted when Dre agreed to accompany him from a serene suburb to the hostile ghetto-ness of North Philadelphia. Dre snaked a black Dodge Charger along I-76, rattling to the baseline of the Jada Kiss Why single. BG rode shotgun, seat reclined like a boss, and he breathed somewhat normally—white boys needed balls to cop down the infamous J Street. Brent Gower, at seventeen had earned the moniker BG, and he had balls the size of Russia. Dre glanced at the Girard Avenue ramp, and BG stole a glance at the young thug, just four years removed from the ghetto where they were headed.
Andre Bezel had smoothly transitioned into suburbia, and was the Upper Merion High School all-American running back. He conspired with BG, the quarterback, on the football turf. And they drove to a notorious drug turf to further that conspiracy. Dre was not a member of BG’s gang, reserved for the toughest white boys in King of Prussia; that was beneath him. Dre’s blackness and he being a product of the hostile North Philadelphia streets was a grand reason for BG to use him. Dre’s father, James “Dope” Bezel was serving a life sentence for a crack conspiracy, which made room for a lame to sweep Dre’s mother off her feet and into King of Prussia. That did not arrest Dre from being intimately connected to the streets, with a Rolodex of connections left behind by his father.
At the off-ramp light, Dre turned left onto Girard Avenue at 35 Street. He drove pass the Philadelphia Zoo, crossed the Girard Avenue Bridge, over the Schuylkill River—which separated West Philadelphia from north, Dre’s side of town. Dre mentally relived ghetto gospel and news headlines that confirmed what a zoo the 15-square miles of North Philadelphia was. Dre meandered along the SEPTA number-15 trolley tracks. The street numbers dropped traffic light by traffic light; that pay day for the trip coming.
33rd Street. Fairmount Park.
29th Street. Blue Jay Diner.
25th Street. Girard College.
21st Street. Berean Institute.
17th Street. St. Joseph Prep School.
16th Street. St Joseph Hospital.
Dre flipped a left up 16 Street. The streets, buildings and houses became scruffier. The teens stared at the crude neighborhood, both glad that they lived where they had. It was not always that way for Dre, though. He had to get used to his new home in the suburbs. Dre pulled up at 16 and Jefferson Streets, and BG did not believe his eyes. The sight was a first; his drugs were usually delivered. The street had three occupied houses with rent paying tenants; the rest were home to squatters. Many other houses were boarded up. A few empty spots where homes had burned down, had housed abandoned vehicles. Young hoodlums loitered on the corner, without a thought of school the following day. Winos drank joyously around a barrel that burned wood in an attempt to ward off sinister winds.
Three black males in a Crown Vic on spinners, pulled behind the Charger. Through the rearview mirror, Dre watched the thugs and put his Desert Eagle on his lap. He knew from experience that the 17 Street sentries drove lemons. A car carrying priests was deemed a threat in that ghetto. Equally, a car with a black and white boy—like Dre and BG—in it was registered as two squares in town to cop, and be robbed afterward.
Dre killed the engine and heard a boom box that played 99 Problems by Jay Z very loudly after midnight. Only in a ghetto was that possible. BG opened the car door and stepped out.
“I’m staying here.” Dre confirmed.
“Good ol’ Goldie here will be by my side,” BG said, and showed Dre, Goldie, the .45-cal that he had in his waist. “I know that she’s a ride or die bitch.” BG ignored the feeling in his gut that screamed for him to get the hell out of there.
“Remember, I told you not to do this.” Dre had tried to convince BG to give him the money and let him cop for him, for a fee, but BG wasn’t having that.
BG grabbed his Woolrich winter coat and walked away from the Charger. He was not for Dre’s negative energy. He was about that paper. Period! BG crossed 16 Street and walked up Jefferson toward 17. A pair of eyes from a second story window followed him step by step. BG walked, shivering in the freezing air, toward the hustlers on the corner. He paused in the middle of the notorious drug zone, reached in his jeans for a slip of paper on which he had Trigger’s number. He ripped his Nextel from the clip, flipped it open and began to dial.
Interrupting his call, a tall thug dressed in all black, stepped out of an alley and put a snub nosed .38 on BG’s temple. Another lanky, thuggish-looking kid snatched the cell phone and told BG, “You don’t need this shit,” before he slammed the phone shut and put it his own pocket.
“This either,” a third man said, and grabbed Goldie from BG’s waist.
With BG stripped of his security, his worst nightmare became a reality, right there on the block. BG felt embarrassed and lost. His heart raced with fear. His mind swirled with Dre’s discouraging comment, Remember, I told you not to do this. He was frisked quickly, but the search seemed in slow motion. The robber with the .38 demanded to know where the money was hidden. BG acted dumb founded and the skinny kid swiftly raised Goldie into the air. Goldie had blacked BG’s eye in one motion.
The kid said, “Maybe that will help your memory?”
BG mopped blood from his face, as it coldly trickled and began to freeze. He had the message. Through clinched teeth, BG told the robbers that the money was hidden in his Timberland boots. He kicked them off and the men searched them. They found the $5,000 stash and then the beefy man threw BG. He landed hard on the front of a Camry, scrambled to his feet quickly—a gift from playing football—and ran back to the Charger.
Blood continued to rain from BG’s face as he hopped into the car. Dre peeled off, tires screaming under the powerful acceleration.
“What the fuck happened back there?” Inside Dre laughed hysterically. He loved when the plan came together. Especially his plans.
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