The book The Sting Man by Robert W. Greene is a non-fiction in terms of genre being based on a real-life situation. It outlines a real story that has occurred in the United States. The author has developed an interesting and a fascinating storyline that stirs up the interest of the audience. It is interesting how Melvin Weinberg went through the integrity checks that the US FBI set to capture the conmen. The book entails the whole story summing up the Abscam Scandal. The scandal is aimed at eradicating conmen in the USA but ends up almost disgracefully affecting the country instead. The book is interesting to an extent that a film has been developed to bring its story line to a wider audience. The movie ‘American Hustle’ is based on the book’s storyline whereby the characters are similar to the ones Greene has involved in his book. A review of the book aims at critically outlining its content on its style and plot, therefore determining whether the book is appealing to the audience.
The title given to the book is selected wisely. Greene has used a favorable title that represents the content of the book’s storyline. The title The Sting Man represents the main theme of the book whereby Greene presents the FBI as a sting body. The sting man is symbolically used by the FBI in investigating the fraud cases in the US and bringing the con men to justice. Therefore, according to this operation, every con person in the US was deemed to be investigated, and his or her con practices stopped. The title, therefore, was suitable for the book due to the role that FBI played in the storyline. On the other hand, the book’s title can be used to represent Weinberg activities. His character perfectly fits the book’s title. His sting nature is shown by the writer when he wisely goes into business with the law enforcers yet who are after people of his kind. His sting nature is specifically realized when he exposes his legendary nature by interrupting operation Abscam through his interaction with the law enforcers. His interruption of the operation almost topples the government who is aimed at countering the counterfeiters in the country. Therefore, by his tricks he stops the operation hence letting the counterfeiters continue with their con activities.
Moreover, the book has an interesting plot. The plot has been organized in a pleasing way whereby the intensifying of the counterfeiters’ activities in the country is the core of the book’s storyline. The organization of the plot is interesting because it creates suspicion among the book’s audience in regards to what is to happen next. Although the book is based on a real story, the plot has a fiction touch and is time-arranged. Therefore, the plot structured by the author fits the book’s aim of capturing the audience interest and manages to pass the intended message to the reader.
Weinberg is an interesting character. Although his actions have a negative impact on the society, they amuse the audience. A reader might think that Weinberg will end up being caught up in his activities. All in all, he has been a conman from his early ages and used his con character and skills to study in school. For instance, Greene states that Weinberg stole the teacher’s gold stars from the teacher’s desk so that he could hide his school failures from his mother’s consent. He studies are being surrounded by scams; however, he graduates despite the scams creating a large fortune for himself. The skills that Greene presents in Weinberg have been cultivated from his early age of six years.
Greene has presented Weinberg’s wrong doings in an interesting manner. Weinberg is almost caught up by the FBI in the Abscam operation whereby he is one of the main players. The Abscam operation is aimed at posing the American representatives of an imaginary Arabian Sheikh, who had a wish to invest in America by finding a permanent asylum in the country. The investment is worth billions. However, the fact that the investment’s main player is an imaginary Arab poses a serious threat to the country and makes the investment plot a counterfeit activity. Therefore, the US government has to counter the investment through exposing the participants and bringing them to justice. As stated above, Weinberg is one of the participants in the investment fraud. At this moment, tension is created by the writer. The audience is suspicious of what would happen to him if he were caught up in the operation. However, Weinberg exposes his intelligent nature by rounding up the operation. He is severally interviewed by the FBI. Greene also shows that Weinberg has utilized 237 interviews to his advantage. He uses the interviews, FBI tapes, and court transcripts to attract the elected public officials to his side. He uses the elected officials to go around and evade the operation. The interruption of the operation almost topples the government because of the involvement of the elected officials in the scandal. The presentation of Weinberg in all the activities stipulated in the book gives the audience an interesting concept of his character. Therefore, Weinberg is a fascinating character in the book.
Although Greene presents him as a conman throughout the book, he obviously likes the character of Weinberg. Greene states, ‘I like Mel Weinberg….He is different. But, in many ways, he is more honest than many people I know. And when he lies, he does it with verve’ (Greene 45). The fact that Greene describes Weinberg in this way creates a dramatic scene, where the audience would like to know more of Weinberg’s positive features. Weinberg specifically aims at conning the socially immoral people. He does not have any interest in conning the innocent people in the USA. Therefore, the audience can have a glimpse on the positive side of Weinberg. Although he is involved in counterfeiting, he also helps the society by eliminating the socially immoral people ‘the loveable rogue, never conning an honest man, the Robin Hood’ (Greene 34). The two sides of Weinberg create a dramatic sense making the book more fascinating. Drama is also presented through the escape of Weinberg from the jaws of the FBI. At the moment when Weinberg does not believe that he had escaped the operation a dramatic effect is the most obvious. The drama in the case of escape is presented using irony gimmick. Critically, the audience expects that Weinberg will be happy after he had evaded being caught. However, instead of being happy he is rather surprised. Therefore, the audience is thrilled by the fact of Weinberg’s escape from the operation.
The novel seems fictional to the audience. The fictional concept in the novel is created by the fact that the US is presented to have a scandal yet currently it is known as scandals-free state. This device adds some spiciness to the novel . The audience gets the urge to know and feel how it is for the United States to be involved in a scandal. Therefore, Greene is a talented writer with skills to create a fascinating content for for his novel.
Moreover, the novel is practical because it entails the activities that are currently present in the society. Greene presents the themes of corruption, power of greed and injustice that have engulfed the United States. The same themes are currently eroding the world. Therefore, the book raises practical and relevant issues. Greene presents corruption through the activities of Weinberg. He is also a main participant in the scandal being under the investigation of the FBI. Similarly, in the modern society, corruption is present at different levels.
The power of greed is another aspect that has been deeply cultivated in the novel. Weinberg has been symbolically used to represent the nature of men. Greene uses Weinberg to emphasize that men are driven by greed. Weinberg aims at gaining much money from his counterfeit activities. Weinberg’s rationality and moral judgment are powered by the desire for wealth to an extent that he uses every single opportunity to achieve his goal. In the modern society, power of greed is experienced, for example, through the greed of politicians to gain political seats. They are ready to commit a crime to receive a place at power. Therefore, the novel represents a rather realistic scenario through the theme of power of greed. Injustice is also demonstrated in the novel through the interruption of the Abscam operation. The counterfeiters are mainly the elected officials who, having understood that Weinberg would expose them, inconvenience the justice process of the operation. The injustice described in the novel is a representation of the injustice being so evident in the modern society. Therefore, the novel is appealing due to the use of the actual questions and societal issues that echo in the hearts of the audience.
In conclusion, the novel review provides a more practical understanding of the novel. The book The Sting Man is interesting and fascinating in its particular style and plot presentation. Greene applies characters that are intelligent yet cunning, evil yet noble, the fusion that attracts and captivates the reader.