RARA-AVIS: When in doubt, Doolittle

From: Kevin Burton Smith ( kvnsmith@thrillingdetective.com)
Date: 10 Jan 2003

Joy wrote:

>Doolittle is my candidate for most unappreciated great hardboiled writer.
>Because his books were always promoted as "if you like Parker's Spenser,"
>which I don't, I never read Doolittle until his books were out of print.

Hmmm... but I do see the similarities between Tom Bethany and the early Spenser. They share the same smug confidence and delight in their own physical abilities, the well-drawn Boston/Cambridge settings, the left of center politics, the obsession with personal autonomy, the love of books and reading, and the love of a good woman, with whom he shares a rather peculiar arrangement.

Despite the similarities, though, Doolittle did create his own character, a strong viable one with a fresh, original voice that I wish we were still hearing from.

If nothing else, Doolittle is probably the best hard-boiled writer whose first name is Jerome.

and Mario wrote:

>Yes, Doolittle is an excellent writer. Others in the same league who
>aren't sufficiently well known are Max Byrd, Roger Simon and
>Jonathan Valin. Byrd hasn't published for a long time, and Simon and
>Valin for quite a while, as far as I know.

Actually, Simon's new book, DIRECTOR'S CUT (featuring Moses Wine) will be out later this year. And an excerpt from it will be appearing on The Thrilling Detective Web Site.

No, don't thank me, it's my pleasure....


Kevin Burton Smith The Thrilling Detective Web Site The 2002 Cheap Thrill Awards are here! Vote now, vote often... And win a copy of Elmore Leonard's latest. -- # 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/ .

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