RARA-AVIS: Big Clock

Mon, 20 Dec 1999 12:34:04 EST

Doug Bassett writes:

<< And here's one I can't recommend:
 Kenneth Fearing -- The Big Clock
 Which is a shame, considering its reputation. But I
 found the story labored and sort of pseudo-literary: >>

Odd coincidence--I just finished The Big Clock last night and also found it disappointing (though not as much as Doug Bassett). It is certainly something less than its reputation, and I'm not sure it falls under noir or hardboiled, even as defined by the broad categories here (not even always colloquial--though I didn't mind the stuff about the clock). It reminded me--in tone and setting--a bit of Howard Browne's Thin Air, which doesn't live up to his Paul Pine books. Perhaps the privileged lives of the characters in both novels make them (the novels) less appealing--no grit even if there is tension.

Another Doug

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