Mooch - Dan Fante, Anthony Bourdain Let me start by saying I like Dan Fante. I think he is a good writer. He’s help fill the enormous void Bukowski left behind. But the guy is a little full of himself. He comes off kind of like a tool in interviews. I’ve even heard him say he is a better writer than Bukowski, which is a pretty ballsy move for someone who is basically stealing Bukowski’s shtick.
Moreover, if he wasn’t the son of John Fante, I don’t think he would be as big as he is. The truth is, Mooch (although entertaining) is a rip-off of his oldman’s book, Ask the Dust. But, that’s not where my beef with the younger Fante lies.
What irks me most about his writing is the endings. They seem tacked on and fake. Like in this book (SPOILER ALERT!), Jimmi Valiente’s kid wanting to stay with Bruno in the end seemed like a total pile of bullshit. It’s a cheap move to get us to think the character(Bruno Dante), isn’t a complete piece of shit. The only problem is, I don’t buy it. It’s a copout. A cheap ploy at sentimentality. He pulled the same stunt in another book where Bruno ends up taking-in two young girls. All this does is point to Dan’s weakness as a writer –he lacks heart (something that his dad had by the boatful). And seeing how is writing is largely based on reality, I think he needs to stick to what he knows -being a lousy drunk (that’s writing 101). Sorry Dan, you gotta have a heart to write with one.