Dennis Tafoya sets his latest novel, “The Poor Boy’s Game,” in gritty neighborhoods of Philadelphia. His protagonist is U.S. Marshal Frannie Mullen. As the story opens Frannie is involved in a situation that goes terribly wrong. She ends up losing her job.
She is devastated. Things quickly turn from bad to worse. Her father had been a violent enforcer for a Philadelphia roofers’ union that is controlled by mobsters. He has just escaped from prison-now some of his former associates are turning up dead.
The other morning, I was sitting by the garden pond, when the dogs across the street began to bark. Whatever it was that roused them must have been pretty exciting, because they kept up their yapping for several minutes. That was long enough to incite the bullfrog in the water beside me to bark too, to join their chorus. And so, for maybe twenty or thirty seconds, I sat on my wooden bench and listened to the hounds and the frog sing together.
The Veteran’s Administration is at the center of a growing scandal encompassing some 26 VA Hospitals – that have been found to have excessively long waiting lists for healthcare. Several states are accused of doctoring those waiting lists to make it look like vets were getting care faster than they were, and some families of vets are saying the situation has resulted in the deaths of their loved ones. A recent investigation by the Dayton Dayton Daily News and Cox Media detailed the situation in Ohio. WYSO’s Jerry Kenney spoke Josh Sweigart, the reporter largely behind that report.