Top positive review
This book kept me turning pages in spite of a couple of issues.
April 26, 2018
The Salad Oil King: An American Tale of Greed Gone Mad by M.G. Crisci is the story of a young boy called Fonso who begins life as the son of a man who sells fish to the neighbors and who later ends up as, well, as the “salad oil king.” From the very beginning, Fonso is small in stature but huge in ambition, and he will do whatever it takes to get what he wants. One of his primary strategies is to surround himself with people who are equally as greedy as he is, but who don’t know how achieve their goals without his guidance. They become willing tools in Fonso’s hands, and in spite of his apparent generosity to those he employs, he doesn’t hesitate to toss them aside when they are no longer of any use. Even Donna, the supposed love of his life, receives the benefits of the success of his many ventures only when her wants and wishes mesh with his own plans. In thinking back on the story, I found few redeeming qualities in any of the characters in this tale.
Still, Crisci spins an interesting yarn about a man who learned to manipulate the system to suit himself, and what will make it even more appealing to history buffs is that it is based on true events. Unfortunately, I didn’t like history in school and am still not that fond of it, so I found the historical passages interspersed throughout the story to be distracting. I would have preferred to have them worked into the story in conversation or some other creative way. However, the facts that I didn’t particularly like the characters and would have preferred fewer history lessons don’t mean I can’t recommend the book. In spite of a few negative reactions, The Salad Oil King kept me turning pages, and it will probably do the same for you.