Ellis Shuman

Kill Me Now, a Book Review

It’s easy to fill in the missing location – Israel – but this tale of a middle-aged man’s dating misadventures is universal.

The first thing I noticed when reading Kill Me Now! by Lawrence Fisher was that the location of the story was never mentioned. The author, who lives in Tel Aviv, doesn’t state that his maneuvers on the dating battleground take place in his hometown, but this is easily deduced as the story couldn’t take place anywhere else.

Lawrence, who began writing his dating misadventures when he was in his forties, provides enough decipherable clues so that the reader can easily discover the Israeli setting. Where else in the world is there “no public transportation on the weekend”? And where else does dating a woman “from the south” make picking her up before dinner a timely task? Thursday night earns the title of date night in the bars and restaurants of what can only be Tel Aviv.

“My book is all about dating in Israel and my hilarious escapes and escapades,” Lawrence told me, but he never states this openly in his book.

I wondered why Kill Me Now! doesn’t serve as an ode to Israeli dating, told from the male’s perspective, but it’s obvious that Lawrence was seeking a larger audience. In an age when finding someone to take to dinner may require registration at an online dating website, experiences of men seeking women for romantic purposes are not tied down to a specific location.

Don’t get me wrong, this is no Israeli man’s version of “Sex and the City”. In fact, sex is strangely absent from the narrative. The story is suitable for all audiences and surprised me by never including the most popular word common to women-seeking men everywhere: breasts (or any other term relating to that physical attribute). The only action occurring when Lawrence scores with his dates takes place off the page, leaving everything to the reader’s imagination.

As for the title of the book, ‘Kill me now!’ appears to be the author’s catch-phrase, shouted out to his friends (many of whom are single women, by the way) and readers alike every time a date prefers to go shopping instead of to dinner, or turns out older and uglier than seen in an online profile. Kill me now!

I first made Lawrence’s acquaintance online when I discovered we both had escaped the clutches of iUniverse, the notorious self-publishing company that takes advantage of aspiring authors. “Not only did I leave iUniverse but I also got all my money back from them, but they still owe me royalties,” he told me.

Kill Me Now! is a quick read, served in bite-sized chapters. Reading them may take less time than some of the author’s less successful dates. Will Lawrence ever find his soul mate? Only time and the book’s sequel will tell. Kill me now!

About the Author
Ellis Shuman made aliya to Jerusalem as a teenager, served in the IDF, was a founding member of a kibbutz, and now lives on Moshav Neve Ilan. Ellis is the author of ‘The Burgas Affair’ – a crime thriller set in Israel and Bulgaria; ‘Valley of Thracians’ - a suspense novel set in Bulgaria; and 'The Virtual Kibbutz' - a collection of short stories. His writing has appeared in The Times of Israel, The Huffington Post, The Jerusalem Post, Israel Insider, and on a wide range of Internet websites. Ellis lived with his wife for two years in Bulgaria, and blogs regularly about Israel, Bulgaria, books, and writing.