The Big Empty is a novel, written by seasoned author Ritch Gaiti, sure to bat a home run with fiction lovers, conspiracy theorists, and anyone who likes a fast-paced mystery that keeps the reader guessing until the very end. Written in true conspiracy theory style, Gaiti’s protagonist, Rick Wallace, has only a small thread of information when he begins an assignment that takes him back to his roots in the Bronx and New York City. The conspiracy he unravels goes all the way to the top of New York Society and back to the first inhabitants of the land there, the Native Americans. It’s often difficult for Rick to tell what is real, coincidence or just plain propaganda. Uncovering the truth could cost him his life but, strong and stubborn, he won’t back down.
The author accomplishes his goal of exposing the vast conspiracy through characters that cannot be bought off or manipulated, but it’s difficult to tell who’s playing who. The timeline changes quickly too, like a New York train, but you won’t mind tracking it because it’s all part of the adventure. Some language designates this book for mature audiences only. Expertly written in third and first person narrative the dialogue between characters makes this fiction believable. For instance, Rick is a take me as I am kind of guy. He’s less than perfect, wounded but still has heart and soul. He’s lovable and caring, sometimes, and other times he’s just in your face, up-close and personal. The evasive E.P Smith and his wife are two very interesting characters, along with Professor Elias Opdyck. Elias is a long-time resident of the city, but wanders the streets like a tourist marveling at skyscrapers and landmarks.
Author Ritch Gaiti is well established, an artist, screenplay writer and producer of short films. He’s been interviewed on several talk shows, including The Today Show, regarding his previous book, titled Points. In The Big Empty mystery, the author racks up a victory for the insignificant little man trying to survive against big business antics, when Rick fills in The Big Empty in court explaining the Latin meaning of Terra Nullius, and how it set a de facto standard of behavior that was unfair and exploited indigenous people, so long ago. Question is will the jury buy it, now? Written on many levels, there’s a realistic plot here that gives pause for serious thought about the plight of the Native Americans who offered up their hospitality to the white man, only to be deceived by them later on. No small feat for an author, Rick Wallace’s personal story is woven in and captivating as is the larger story itself. In my opinion, The Big Empty is not empty at all, but choc-full of possibility to become a best seller.
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