IF YOU DON'T WATCH OUT by Alex Hamilton

IF YOU DON'T WATCH OUT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

When we meet him his name is Maxie, Maxie Hill- ex-Johnny, ex-Harold and probably ex- Tom, Dick and Harry. He is a man with many ex-personalities but now he is a new man, one with plans and he is wandering through London with the air of someone who has Just come through the Blitz: ""He was out! He was free! The feeling was not yet properly with him, but it would come, walking."" Maxie has Just come from the ""Hotel,"" a hospital that evidently catered to alcoholic psychos. Maxie was one of those. Searching, Searching, Searching through London town we go, trying to find all the old haunts and haunters. Maxie's old nudie-photography studio has gone to the rats, his old partner has fled, his favorite old whore has been replaced, his old bar has been renovated but at least there's one old strip Joint he can take refuge in and one old platonic love to look up. Things liven up in the next few days; Maxie gets a Job as a truckdriver and uses the truck to carry a new love off to various romantic sites- an abandoned church for instance--and his birthplace where he spends some time trying to remember his first name. He also visits a morgue in an effort to identify an old friend and makes it to bed with the old platonic love, an actress. She's fed up with life, he's undecided and so it's back to the hospital where we leave him secure, and even happier with the knowledge that he and the actress are now sharing adjacent wards. And we make the not-so-surprising discovery that Maxie had never been officially released. An artsy but not-so-craftsy attempt at the great psychological novel. Pretentious and strained.

Publisher: McKay