RARA-AVIS: Noir AND Hardboiled

From: Reed Andrus ( rsandrus@swbell.net)
Date: 28 Apr 2002

Hi Jim!

Unless someone's already mentioned it, perhaps the most recent example of noir plus hardboiled is Thomas Cook's
(sadly neglected) series featuring Frank Clemons -- who was nominated for the 111, and rightly so. No one can do contemporary noir better than Cook; unfortunately, he's strayed from the hardboiled path in his last several novels.

... Reed

> In prose, the best examples I can think of, since
> their books are otherwise very similar, are Spillane's
> Mike Hammer series, and Prather's Shell Scott series.
> Hammer exists in a very noir universe, where the
> concrete canyons of Manhattan are always in shadow,
> the streets are always ran-swept, and the dawn never
> seems to come. Shell Scott, just as tough, just as
> lethal, just as right-wing and anti-communist (it's
> interesting to compare the Scott novel PATTERN FOR
> PANIC with ONE LONELY NIGHT), lives in a perpetually
> sunny atmosphere, where it's rarely night-time, where
> even the worst crooks are good-humored, and where
> booze is taken to boost his already ebullient spirits
> rather than to drown his sorrows.
> Noir just means a dark and sinister atmosphere, and
> it's as easy to fit a hard-boiled character into such
> an atmosphere (arguably, it's easier) than any other
> kind of character.

# 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 : 28 Apr 2002 EDT