RARA-AVIS: Voluntary Madness/Noir Books

From: T. Kent Morgan ( tkmorgan@shaw.ca)
Date: 07 Apr 2005

Before I made my first visit to Key West a couple of years ago, I decided to read some Key West fiction. Vicki's Voluntary Madness was one of the books. A couple embark on research for the man's novel, which includes breaking into Hemingway House, planning to commit suicide on Fantasy Fest Night and holding up restaurants for gourmet meals. The woman also flashes men on the street and begins a relationship with a lesbian wicca. My notes called it weird - that it was - but a good read. I just dug Miami Purity out of my enormous TBR piles. I love this blurb from James W. Hall - "James M. Cain is a timid schoolmarm compared to Vicki Hendricks."

Nevada Blue by John Tilsley, who I don't think has been mentioned on this list, qualifies as a noir novel worth reading IMO. Joey O'Sullivan is a former boxer who left Boston after being involved with a mob killing. He now works in a Las Vega porno theatre and lives quietly in the hope he won't be found. But an ex-Boston journalist, who shows up at the theatre, recognizes him and lets a contact know. The mob sends someone after both Joey and a gambler, but before the killer finds him, he kills a black man in a street fight. Life is not good. I left my copy in England after reading it a couple of years ago so can't tell you anything more about Tilsley or the book. Maybe John Williams can help.

Kent Morgan

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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 07 Apr 2005 EDT