RARA-AVIS: Willeford as god of noir

From: Michael Robison ( miker_zspider@yahoo.com)
Date: 06 Oct 2007

Don Lee wrote:

I would like to request please that someone start by talking about Charles Willeford. I am just now getting into him--I've read WILD WIVES, COCKFIGHTER, PICK-UP, and I have a copy of SIDESWIPE that I haven't started yet. He seems much better than average to me.

************* Willeford kicks ass. A long time ago Mario mentioned that neo-noir is separated from noir by an irony of style. I thought what the hell is that, but when I read Wild Wives, I understood. It puts a humorous ironic twist on a standard noir theme.

If you are into it, Willeford has also got a great book of essays out. I think it's called Writing and Other Blood Sports.

I think his best is The Burnt Orange Heresy. The worst I've read is The Difference. The Difference plays off an irony of style of the old Westerns, but it lacked the edge of his other works.


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