The Art of Alliance
|Title:||The Art of Alliance|
|Publisher:||Of Dreams and Schemes Press|
|Editor(s):||Cathy Schlein & Debi Barbich|
|Date(s):||May 2011-May 2014|
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The Art of Alliance 1 was published in May 2011 and contains 250 pages.
Neither the color cover nor any of the interior color or black and white photo-manip art is credited. In the editorial, the editors ask readers if they'd be willing to pay a $10 fee for PDF zines to "help defray the cost of keeping our word processor and distiller programs up to date."
- Define Partner by Peggy Hartsook (Just what defines a partnership? Words or deeds? A difficult case tests the idea for Peter and Neal.) (5) (nominated for a 2012 Fan Q)
- One Year, Twelve Days and Two Hours by Catherine Schlein (There are times you remember with great joy, and moments you wish you could forget. The team remembers the loss of one of their own, but things are not always as they seem. A surprising turn of events brings a change.) (35) (nominated for a 2012 Fan Q)
- The Crime Meridian by Pamela Smith (Stolen maps lead Neal and Peter on a merry chase for a master thief with murder and mayhem along the way.) (61)
- A Tour with Organized Crime by Peggy Hartsook (Peter is sent upstairs to take lead on the Organized Crime Team and all does not go well. That team is in disarray and Peter finds the job very difficult -- and dangerous. Peter’s team, and Neal, in particular, find it frustrating not to have their leader around -- and wonder if he will be allowed to return.) (79) (nominated for a 2012 Fan Q)
- Of Time Spent in a City Different by Catherine Schlein (Neal’s four years are up with the FBI, and with Peter heading a new team, Neal finds himself questioning what he should do. It is, ultimately, that time when he must decide: Con or Man. And he finds he can’t do it in New York.) (129)
- A Life for a Life by Mary C. Jodziewicz (When Peter goes missing, it is up to Neal and the rest of the team to find him. The question is, who took him and why? Can they find him in time?) (153)
- The Road That Might Have Been by Catherine Schlein (Some junior grade forgeries lead Peter and Neal to a murdered con man and ultimately into an undercover sting. Burke has his Seven, but Neal has a Brotherhood. Peter learns of Neal’s past and Neal is forced to face memories he’d just as soon forget.) (195)
The Art of the Alliance 2 was published in May 2014 and contains 194 pages.
- 100 Words for Snow by Lisa Paris -- When Peter and his father-in-law are attacked on a snowy night, survival is not guaranteed.
- Chimes on the Wind by Catherine Schlein -- Life has a way of getting complicated. When Neal has to go into witness protection, his life changes. When his nemesis finds out where he is, can he escape?
- Devil's Trumpet by Pamela Smith -- Neal and Peter try to stop a theft ring that targets high-end jewelry salesmen. To catch the thieves, a dangerous plan is hatched to use Neal as bait.
- The Coldest Case by Peggy Hartsook -- When a former CI of Peter's comes back, is all what it seems to be?
- I Shall Watch Over Thee by Catherine Schlein -- As a favor, Peter asks Neal to authenticate a rare book for a friend. But then the friend is killed and Neal goes missing...
Reactions and Reviews: Issue 2
"THE ART OF ALLIANCE 2 is a GEN White Collar collection published by Catherine Schlein. I bought this fanzine on the strength of her extensive writing and publishing history mainly in the Of Dreams and Schemes series and The Art of Alliance 1. I would give this a rating of 5 Stars.
She has published a new fanzine based on one of my favorite shows: White Collar. I really like this show because of the strong relationship between the straight laced FBI Agent, Peter, and the former conman, Neal, who is assigned to Peter in order to help track down art thieves. Peter doesn’t quite trust Neal and thinks Neal is trying to con him. Neal, of course, is trying to con Peter, and therein lies the magic. I thought the fanzine explored their lives and relationships at a deeper and more complex level than even what appears in the show (if that is even possible).
My only complaint: Some of the stories are written which take place in the last season before the finale (which has not aired yet) in which things will be hopefully resolved. They include references to situations which may change at the conclusion of the series. This is a very minor component and is easily overlooked.
Characterization: The authors have captured the essence and heart of the characters, especially Neal and Peter. I could really see Peter and Neal saying and thinking these things. She has really captured their heart and essence. The price of the fanzine was worth it, just for this aspect.
Hurt Comfort: This fanzine abounds in hurt comfort themes from Peter’s Father in Law saving Peter from a certain death to Peter rescuing Neal. The hurt comfort aspect is sometimes subtle and sometimes overt and it adds layers and depth to the stories.
The following stories appear in the fanzine:
I would highly recommend this zine to White Collar lovers." 
- 100 Words for Snow by Lisa Paris. Peter and his Father-In Law are in an ambush and Peter’s Father-in-Law saves Peter’s life all while trying to psycho-analyze, Peter, Neal and even Mozzie. Great moments of hurt comfort and I would really love to see a story like this in the show. This fanzine is worth it for this story alone.
- Chimes on the Wind by Catherine Schlein. This is a sad, but sweet version of a possible future.
- Devil’s Trumpet by Pamela Smith. This story could be an episode and is a great story.
- The Coldest Case by Peggy Hartsook. Neal is jealous when Peter brings in a former CI to solve a cold case. I could really see this happening, especially Neal’s reaction.
- I Shall Watch Over Thee by Catherine Schlein. Peter asks Neal to help on a case and Neal becomes caught up in a supernatural case. Peter rescues Neal, of course.