RARA-AVIS: Mahannah, Browne; NME; True Crime

From: Juri Nummelin ( juri.nummelin@postikaista.net)
Date: 02 Dec 2004


I didn't mean that there would be signs of Ross Macdonald in Mahannah's work. I was thinking that maybe this compassion thing we've been discussing was emerging in many writers' work at the same time and not just Macdonald, Dewey and Gault. Maybe it was sign of the times, the flip side of Spillane.

Howard Browne sure shows lots of empathy and compassion in "Taste of Ashes", but I'd still say it's more Chandler than Ross Macdonald.

What about David Markson? I remember reading somewhere that his two novels, "Epitaph for a Tramp" (1959) and "Epitaph for a Dead Beat" (1961) are reminiscent of Macdonald. Anyone read them?


New Musical Express introduced me to James Ellroy in 1986 or 1987. There was a centre spread about the great hardboiled authors. That was the first time I heard about such guys as Ellroy, David Goodis, Richard Hallas, McGivern...

Jim Thompson I knew, but this was the first occasion I read him being called "the pulp Dostoyevsky" (or something to that effect). William Hjortsberg's "The Fallen Angel" (or what's its name?) was also mentioned. I still remember: "The movie is OK, but doesn't come close." I still haven't read Hjortsberg's novel. Is it any good?

I don't remember who wrote the article, but I can still remember how thrilled I was. I had read Hammett, Chandler and Macdonald already and was waiting for something else to come along. Here it was. Thanks, NME!



On Eastwood's "True Crime": don't bother. It's a sloppy movie. Haven't read the book, though.


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