Re: RARA-AVIS: Sleeping Dog

From: Peedie Monk (
Date: 23 May 2002

----- Original Message ----- From: "Robison Michael R CNIN" <>

> al said:
> Off the top of my head, the only other book I've read
> that uses two first person narrators is "1977" by David Peace.
> miker said:
> kenneth fearing's _big clock_ is written from more than
> one first person view. its a rarely used style, isn't
> it? but it can be a really cool way of showing a story
> from different eyes.

You're absolutely right, mike. Jim Thompson's "The Criminal" does this as well. Thrillers use multiple viewpoints almost as a matter of principle, although predominantly third person, which isn't difficult because you can name the character in the narrative. But both Fearing and Thompson cheat. Each chapter or section in their respective multiple first person POV novels has the current viewpoint character's name as a header. The question is, if they weren't tagged, how long would it take you to work out whose head you were in? Two first person narrators, without a blatent identifier, is really difficult. More than two is probably too hard on the reader. Having said that, there's probably one out there somewhere. And I'm sure somebody will let me know.

Al Guthrie

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