DIZZY CITY: AUTHOR’S NOTE
When you start reading about the history of con artists, the oddest thing that arises is that an unusual number of the great American practitioners come out of Indiana. The reason, they say, is that between state fairs various travelers took great pleasure in inventing ways to rob their friends of a buck or two next time they saw them. The most basic of all these games was and still is, three card monte, that familiar shuffle where you try to follow a card and hand over your dollar/pound/euro after guessing wrong. What’s fascinating about the genre of con novels and films that have arisen over the last hundred years is how authors and directors play a continuing game of three card monte with their audiences. You’re tricked into keeping an eye on the wrong card/character, the plot shuffles and when it’s all resolved, hopefully you’ve been surprised. You don’t exactly feel cheated because you’ve been entertained while being conned.