Re: RARA-AVIS: Walking and Talking--Two Different Things?

From: Maura McMillan (
Date: 19 Dec 2000

Point being that the dialogue isn't authentic, but it catches the way the reading public imagines the characters would talk. As for the reality of PI fiction, perhaps the most successful authors capture the way their readers would like to think they would behave if they themselves were tough-guy detectives? And perhaps depictions of those mean streets, where most nights almost anyone could walk without encountering anything more dangerous than an obnoxious drunk, describe a world of random violence and death that could only be conjured in snug, middle-class, suburbs?

i think you're right. it's just a continuation of a weird american smugness, because we haven't had a war fought on our property since the civil war, excluding of course those racially inspired campaigns against indians, people of japanese descent, and black people. it's a mythology, rather than realism, for sure.

i prefer a contemporary setting and stark realism.

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