Re: RARA-AVIS: Sports Noir

From: Steve Novak (
Date: 14 Feb 2007

All your suggestions sound great and, as I got for Valentine¹s day present a book about Pistol Pete whom I met in my first year in the US as he was playing for LSU, I am already tempted by your description of The Great Molinas...

Just for the sake of argument I would be very curious to know about any noir connection with car or motorcycle racing...I know of a book by Vachss called The Getaway Man whose hero is a Œdriver¹...unfortunately Vachss has bad press on Rara and in the States in general, but the book is great...and dark as wet shoe polish...but there must be some bleak corners of pre-Nascar bootleging that have produced some dark screetching tales...???... Any dark corners in the Pan-American race or anything else on two or four wheels?

Steve Novak

On 2/14/07 8:19 PM, "T. Kent Morgan" <> wrote:

> I'm almost afraid to suggest some book as noir on this list. Despite
> all the discussion about noir over the past few years, I am more
> confused than ever as to what might qualify. But, please, not more
> explanations, at least for awhile.
> John Williams mentioned David Peace's The Damed UTD. After reading
> it late last year, on the this list I called it as possibly the
> first football (soccer) noir. John would know better. Definitely
> noir is The Great Molinas by Neil D. Isaacs, a novel based on the
> life of basketball star Jack Molinas. He starred in college, played
> in the NBA where he was kicked out for gambling, became a lawyer,
> did jail time and was rubbed out by the mob. As it states on the
> dust jacket, "if you have to go bad, you couldn't do it with more
> success than Jack Molinas." I'm not a basketball fan, but this novel
> rates right near the top of my persoanl sports fiction list.
> The Jook by Gary Phillips also should qualify. The late Barbara
> Serenella blurbed it as follows:
> Zelmont Raines is a former Super Bowl-winning wide receiver who has
> self-destructed himself out of the limelight. He's trying every way
> he knows to reclaim the life of fast women and big money. All this
> leads to the end zone run of his life.
> The Last Season by Roy MacGregor about a hockey goon also might fit
> the bill.
> Kent Morgan

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