Alice and Me

ALICE AND ME
by
Edwin Corley (as William Judson)

Arthur Fields Books, Inc. – New York – 1973 Hardcover
Warner Paperback Library Edition – New York – 1974 Paperback
 
When Fred Fredrickson (“Fred all the way”) saw his target, he didn’t think twice. He knew the man was wanted for slaying two policemen, and up in the woods when you run across a dangerous critter you don’t wait around for him to attack: Fred felled the fugitive with one 30.06 slug from his Springfield ’03. But woods lore is scarcely adequate preparation for the jungle law of the city, he discovers years later – many years, in fact, when, still spry as a goat for all his seventy years, he turns up in New York City. Nothing there seems to make much sense to old Fred. All that filth – why, even the lowest varmint lives better than some of these folks. All those locks on the doors. And Alice – why does a pretty young gal want to hide her good looks under layers of dirt? Then two punks, thinking the old-timer easy prey, try to roust him, and he stomps them senseless. Run! Alice warns him, before the cops come. Why run? He’s caught two muggers! Stick around, thinks Alice, you’ll learn. He does – and does.
 
One day Fred’s coming down in the elevator when a thick arm wraps around his neck, his breath is near squoze out of him, and for a moment it looks like finis for Fred Frederickson. Luckily, help comes, but in court Fred’s luck really turns – for the worse. For it’s there he learns that city law seems to protect muggers; by the time the police, lawyers, and judge are finished, old Fred just isn’t sure who’s going to jail. And, of course, nobody does.
 
Which is right about when Alice and Me begins to wipe that smile off its face. What has begun as a joyride swings into a chilling suspense story that dares to explore what a frightening number of people are thinking.