RARA-AVIS: The Ax that Hooks you...

From: Bill Bowers ( BBowers@one.net)
Date: 03 Jun 2002

- ----- Original Message -----
>From: "Peedie Monk" < peediemonk@ukonline.co.uk>
>Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: rabe and westlake
>- ----- Original Message -----
>From: "Buzz" < BuzzMeeks@attbi.com>
> > I found "The Hook" disappointing and kind of flat, especially after
> > reading Westlake's "The Ax". The premise offered all sorts of
> > intriguing possibilities, virtually all of which are ignored in favor
> > of a quite obvious
> > and unimaginative ending, IIRC. I think I'm in the minority on this
> > one, but I'd opt for "The Ax" instead, a great book.
>"The Ax" is stunning.
>Al Guthrie

I totally agree with both of you. When the 'plot' of The Ax was described to me, I said that Westlake couldn't possibly pull it off. He did. ...and didn't back away in the ending, which I really appreciated.

In a word it is the most brilliantly amoral book I've ever read. Makes Cain seem as a wimp.

Paul Cain, that is.

[Any followup would have been virtually impossible, but I found The Hook passable until its end, which, to me, _was_ a cop-out.]

## BTW: Speaking of the Rabe portion of this thread -- the most recent Mystery Scene (#74, a month or two old) contains a very informative 4 or 5 page biography on him. That issue leads off with a 'tribute' to Lawrence Block, by diverse Big Names, including a 5+ page 'guide' through all 15 Scudder books by Peter Straub which is a work of art in itself. Much other Good Stuff also.

Bill Bowers

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