Union Vs. Company Vol 1. - Livin' La Vida Local
by Perel L. Blakely
RoseDog Books

"Who was really working for whom? Was Dan in Larry’s pocket, or vice versa? Could Larry and the union actually be working for the company?"

Silver-tongued devil Peter Lablazio is the local 205’s Shop Steward at USA Pop and Beverages, Inc. His gift of gab renders him a master of union negotiations in both business and sex, gaining him the admiration of his fellow union men. Peter’s deceased father’s best friend, Sal, had arranged for him to be elected Steward and depends on him to keep things running smoothly. The only problem is that Peter genuinely cares for the men he represents and has the courage to speak up for them—to both union and company bosses. When Larry De Grossi arrives from New York to ensure all goes well in the upcoming union negotiations, Peter is faced with a choice. Does he follow the orders of the union bosses, or does he follow his conscience, stand up for his men, and face an extremely dangerous situation? To complicate matters, Peter begins a relationship with the newly hired female warehouse boss which, if found out, could cost her the job or leave her vulnerable to blackmail by the union. The more Peter becomes entangled with the union bosses, the more he begins to suspect something isn’t right.

Perel L. Blakely’s intriguing novel is written from his own experiences as a union shop steward which is most evident in the flow and choice of language. And while there are problems with grammar within the expository sections of the book—including dialect creeping into descriptive paragraphs at times—this doesn’t keep the plot from being captivating. There’s no place for political correctness or gender sensitivity in the work environment described by Blakely. The characters and language are raw, offensive, and real. Blakely has a gift for describing the warehouse environment and developing an exciting plot that sheds light on an industry that has few chroniclers.

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