RE: RARA-AVIS: Dorothy B. Hughes' Nasty Twins

From: Ed Lynskey (
Date: 14 Dec 2002

> Ed Lynskey wrote:
> I finished reading Dorothy B. Hughes THE
> SO BLUE MARBLE. In a by-the-numbers murder
> mystery, she sure created a set of cold-blooded
> nasty antagonists in the Montefierrow twins.
> With their "trick" canes and spiked cigarettes,
> they stand out. I'm not sure if the novel is hb,
> but these villians are evil with a capital E.
> ************
> miker wrote:
> I understand there's an element of science fiction in the
> book. Is that correct? I also heard that the book is a
> bit surrealistic. That would be a big change from RIDE
> THE PINK HORSE, which was straight clean fiction.
> Did you like the book?
> And I can understand your comment: "villians are evil with
> a capital E." The PINK HORSE had some very wicked flash-
> backs into Sailor's childhood. Reminiscent of Faulkner or
> Derek Raymond.
> miker
If there were sci-fi elements, they flew by me. Her prose, IMO, is deceptive. It reads like a cozy, safe, locked room plot, then -- ugh! -- somebody is killed on-stage. Creepy, for its time and, for me, now. And this from a lady who was a teacher and won an award from the Yale Series for Younger Poets.
 Without divulging the plot, it's like THE MALTESE FALCON. A mysterious marble is sought. (Q: Is that type of object called a "macguffin"?)

And, yes, I enjoyed reading it if for a change of pace. PINK HORSE is on my TBR.

Ed Lynskey



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