Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Ross Macdonald vs. Elmore Leonard

Date: 23 Aug 2007

miker wrote:

"And by virtue of one great novel brings up a bunch. I hesitate to say it, but I'd put Willeford in that category for The Burnt Orange Heresy. Nothing else I've read of his has measured up."

That is heresy in my book Although I agree Burnt Orange is his best, almost everything else I've read of his have been very good indeed. Out of curiosity, have you read Miami Blues, his cop novel?

And it was James Crumley who wrote Last Good Kiss. Also very good by him is Dancing Bear.

Back to Gopnik's dichotomy in the subject line, I really see no need to choose between them, just as I see no need to choose between Chandler and Cain, an older clash set up by critics (and the authors themselves; Chandler did not like Cain's writing ad Cain hated being grouped with the hardboiled school). I've read all of the Lew Archers and numerous of Leonard's crime novels (though I kind of let him lapse, think Rum Punch was the last of his I read). Very different writers, I'd probably pick Macdonald if I were forced to choose, but why can't I like both Macdonald and Leonard, Chandler and Cain, Beatles and the Stones, . . .?


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