RARA-AVIS: Trucking

From: Moorich2@aol.com
Date: 22 Apr 2002

Kent recommended KING OF THE ROAD by Paul Hemphill and aside from the blurb from Harry Crews, it also sports one from Johnny Cash. Hemphill is a long time favorite of mine from the day he moved to Atlanta back about 1964 and began writing a newspaper column for the long dead, unlamented Atlanta Times and later for the Atlanta Journal. ROAD is more of an autobiographical novel, as Hemphill's father was an old trucker in Alabama, than a crime story. His nonfiction is excellent as witness THE GOOD OLD BOYS and TOO OLD TO CRY and I very much enjoyed his first novel LONG GONE, which HBO turned into a fine movie.

Years ago I reviewed a novel for Mystery Scene that featured a Peterbilt truck as a main character. It was around 1991. Damn if I can remember the name of it. If I find the ARC, I'll pass along the title and author. There was also TRUCK SHOT by Joe Stinson, which was part of a series. Scribner's published it in 1989. Stoney Winston was the character.

In the movies, wasn't it Wayne Morris who drove the truck in the great "B" caper movie "Plunder Road" back in 1957? I would love to see that movie again. Gene Raymond and Elisha Cook Jr. are also in the cast. Elisha may have been in more great, good, or at least interesting crime/noir films than any other actor. Hmmm, maybe not when I think of Joe Sawyer and Barton MacLane but old Elisha was in a lot of good ones.

Richard Moore

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