Given the definitions put forth, I think we have to work by
example, so I'll start with what I know best:
Mario Balzic *can* be very tough but isn't always; in fact,
he can also be very soft. He does not have supreme
self-confidence, though once he chooses a path, he goes and
does it. He is definitely colloquial and working class.
Because Constantine's portraits cover a lot of ground beyond
the mere adventure or the solution of a crime, his characters
can't be pegged easily. One can safely say that he works
within the hardboiled procedural tradition, but that's all.
Such a description doesn't even give a hint of what goes on
in his stories.
It occurs to me that crime literature may have moved beyond
the hardboiled vs. cozy (or dark vs. light, etc.) dichotomy,
which was never all that clear-cut to start with.
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