Non-fiction novel?

Doug Brode’s new book depicts Lee Harvey Oswald as a “Patsy!”

— For instance, real-life interviews with former psychological warriors such as Dr. Sidney Gottleib confirmed the federal government’s mind-control experiments in the 1950s, many involving the use of hallucinogenic drugs. In “Patsy,” Oswald is dosed with LSD and – get this – while tripping he meets both Robert F. Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe!

Brode’s Oswald keeps impressive company indeed. He also rubs shoulders with mobsters like the Las Vegas don, Handsome Johnny Rosselli. Lee and Johnny even team up on an aborted attempt on the life of Fidel Castro in Havana before being captured and tortured.

‘Cuban Rebel Girls’

One of the most intriguing passages in “Patsy” focuses on the strange-but-true story of aging film star Errol Flynn’s personal support for Castro’s Cuban Revolution. Turns out that Flynn and his teenage girlfriend, Beverly Aadland, did in fact shoot a B-minus movie in 1959 called “Cuban Rebel Girls.”

Full of factual filmlore and aptly capturing the pervasive paranoia of the Cold War Era, “Patsy” is an endlessly entertaining experience, although it sheds no new light on the mysteries of Kennedy’s murder.

Brode’s coup de grace comes with his surprise conclusion that Oswald fired shots from the Texas School Book Depository that day in Dallas, but did not take aim at the president’s limo. To find out who he shot at and why, you’ll have to read the book.

San Antonio-bound

Brode worked for decades as a movie critic for the Syracuse New Times and the Syracuse Newspapers and has taught film courses at Syracuse University and Onondaga Community College. Over the years he has written more than three dozen books including two terrific studies of the work of Walt Disney, “From Walt to Woodstock” and “Multiculturalism and the Mouse.”

Brode and his wife, Sue, plan to move next month from nearby Pennellville to San Antonio, Texas.

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