Re: RARA-AVIS: RE: Soul Circus

From: Grimes (
Date: 25 Mar 2003

I have to agree with miker . I think Pelecanos has great taste in music. Of course I do - he and I have the same taste! But in his novels the references do seem kind of name-droppy, don't they? it doesn't tell us much about the characters, other than that they, too, have great taste in music. or much about the story. other than that it's happening to people with great taste in music. i don't see how the musical references illuminate theme, either.

--Steve Lichtman

----- Original Message ----- From: "Robison Michael R CNIN" <> To: <> Sent: Tuesday, March 25, 2003 11:49 AM Subject: RE: RARA-AVIS: RE: Soul Circus

> Craig wrote:
> I read _Soul Circus_ last week and while I enjoyed it,
> I couldn't help but feel that there was a certain
> sameness to the book that has been there in a lot of
> Pelecanos' recent work. He's almost writing the same
> book, over and over--It's not as bad as James Lee
> Burke yet, but he's getting there.
> ************
> The thing I wonder about in his books is the era-specific
> references and the frequency of them. To an extent, it
> parallels the social history novels I've read by O'Hara,
> Heath, and Gores, with one critical shortcoming. Those
> other books open up an era you didn't live in and make it
> come alive. Unless you are already familiar with what
> Pelecanos is talking about, the music he mentions tells
> you nothing. It's like an insider joke.
> It damages shelf life. Maybe he's writing for the
> present and doesn't care how it will read in 30 years.
> miker

# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
#  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 25 Mar 2003 EST