RARA-AVIS: Shame the Devil

From: Carrie Pruett ( pruettc@hotmail.com)
Date: 10 Mar 2002

>I understand. It's just my personal opinion that his characters are >wooden
>and the prose pedestrian. <snip>. I certainly don't
>mean to offend by offering a differing opinion and will keep quiet on
>Pelecanos in future.
>Paul Miller

I don't think anyone has a problem with voicing contrary opinions. It's hard to have a very substantive discussion about your criticism, though, because it was almost entirely conclusory. You criticized the methods used in the robbery - which, as someone pointed out, are partly explained by later plot developments - and you used some adjectives to describe the characters and writing. Since you haven't said what you find "wooden" about the characters or "pedestrian" about the writing, the reasonalbe response for someone with an opposing viewpoint is to say that they disagree. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the type of opinion you posted, but I don't think it can lead to a very fruitful discussion unless you give some examples or define your terms a little better. There's no reason that you should feel obliged to do this, but it may be the best way to get the discussion flowing.

I mean, personally, I found "Devil" to be one of Pelecanos' weaker efforts, particularly in the portrayal of the bad guy and in the climactic scene. There were a lot of things I liked about the book, including the support group setup, the developing friendship between Karras and Stefanos, and the B-storyline case that Stefanos investigates. But I wasn't wild about the book overall - I didn't believe in the bad guys who seemed cartoonish (no more cartoonish than in "King Suckerman" but in that book I took into account the spoof/ homage of seventies flicks; "Devil" seemed aimed to be a more realistic book, yet the portrayal of these eccentric-movie-bad-guy type characters took me out of it). I also found the climax rather weak because it didn't work for me in light of the experiences Karras and Stefanos have had in earlier books (had to work at phrasing that one to avoid spoilers, but I think I did -)


_________________________________________________________________ Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at http://explorer.msn.com/intl.asp.

# 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 : 09 Mar 2002 EST