RARA-AVIS: RE: Chinaman's Chance

From: Dick Lochte ( dlock@ix.netcom.com)
Date: 16 Aug 2000

> Doug wrote:
> "Personally, I'd describe Thomas more in terms of Elmore Leonard.
> "Elmore Leonard in the corridors of power", maybe."
> Maybe now, but I first read Chinaman's Chance before Leonard had his
> breakthrough, so the comparison wouldn't have sold many copies.

Doug's point is a good one. It also applies to comments about Thomas's use of now-familiar plot devices (the conservative politician/power-broker as villain, etc.). "Chinaman's Chance" was written more than twenty years ago. His first book, "The Cold War Swap," won an Edgar in the mid-Sixties. It would be a little ludicrous to criticize him in the year 2000 for using what have by now become clich餠cold war sentiments.

Regarding the question of who Brian Garfield is, until the mid-1980s, he was a very prolific and successful thriller writer. One of his novels was the basis for the Bronson movie "Death Wish" and its many sequels. This was a mixed blessing. It brought him wealth, but because the films did a 180 on the book's theme of vigilantism being a bad thing, it was not exactly an exhilarating experience. I think he may have stopped writing fiction to focus on filmmaking, probably with the idea of having more control over his work. I think there was a Walter Matthau movie "Hopscotch," based on one of his novels.

Dick Lochte

# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
# majordomo@icomm.ca.  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at http://www.miskatonic.org/rara-avis/ .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 16 Aug 2000 EDT