RARA-AVIS: Always Outnunbered, Always Ougunned - by Walther Mosley

From: Etienne Borgers ( freeweb@rocketmail.com)
Date: 04 Dec 2000

'Always Outnunbered,Always Ougunned'

I'm pleased to hear that I'm not the only one who finds the non-Rowlins novels by Mosley superior to what he did in that series. Do not misunderstand me: Mosley is one of the good HB/Noir writers, but I always had the feeling he could do better and also that the interest of the Rowlins novels was more as period documents about Black people's recent past, than as mystery/crime works. I recently red "Always.." and I must admit I really enjoyed it, much more than the Rowlins saga. The mosaic of events all lived by Socrates Fortlow, the old released convict, definitely adds something valuable to the purely "realistic" description of the life of poor people in Watts. Sure, Socrates is a hard-boiled character deep inside, but the novel is not totally so, and it does not matter if it belongs to the outskirts of the genre: it's a very good novel, of any genre, by itself. The progression of Socrate's self-imposed redemption in that book is a real achievement. There is something magic in that assembly of small episodes and their continuity (most of which were first published as short novels). IMHO: a great book.

E.Borgers Hard-boiled Mysteries http://www.geocities.com/Athens/6384

Daniel Sevitt < DANIELSE@Amdocs.com>: does anybody know if there are any more Rawlins books planned? Despite coming to Mosley through this series I find the non-Rawlins books even more interesting. I finally caught up with the Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned TV movie on Israeli cable the other week.

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