RE: RARA-AVIS: New to the list

Gilbert, Len (
Thu, 15 Jan 1998 11:21:27 -0800 >----------
>Sent: Thursday, 15 January, 1998 10:59 AM
>Subject: RARA-AVIS: New to the list


>As far as new stuff coming out, I really enjoy Pellecanos' Nick Stefanos
>books. They are as close to hardboiled as you can get these days. I'm from
>the DC area, and he has the setting nailed perfectly.
>One of the things I love about great crime fiction is the way the city
>becomes a character in the story. The protagonist in these books, often the
>lone PI, moves between social strata and ranges the length and breadth of
>the city. The best authors really bring this to life -- Hammet's San
>Francisco, Leonard's Detroit, Stout's Manhattan, Goodis' Philadelphia, etc.,
>jump off the page and surround you.

I usually agree, although I recently finished Michael(?) Stone's Low End
of Nowhere and liked it pretty much, not too cliched in his
interpretation of the hardboiled genre, but what I liked was that Denver
was NOT a "character" in the novel. I was prepared to not like the
writer because to me, Denver just ain't hard-boiled. I know that Neal
Cassiday and family had some tough times on skid row in the 40's but
with the Rockies and Broncos cleaning Denver up, yuppifing and
microbrewing, hardboiled just isn't a way to describe the city to me.
Stone really could be writing about any midsize American city, which
gives the novel more to identify with.

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