Re: RARA-AVIS: Lawrence Block month -- Matthew Scudder

From: Michael Robison (
Date: 03 Nov 2007

I cut your whole darn post, Mark, but I loved every bit of it. Especially the comment about your suspicion that contemporary writers of detective fiction are padding their writing with the detectives' personal lives.

I don't know why but I've never read a lot of Lawrence Block. Maybe part of it is that my first introduction was on this list with When the Sacred Ginmill Closes. It was dark and brooding but just a little bit dull, too. I think the novel carries much more impact for someone who has traveled the distance through the series.

I recently read Ticket to the Boneyard and liked it a lot. I believe it occurs later in the series because in it Scudder is sober, while in Ginmill the drinking is continuous. I've already done a quick synopsis of the plot in an earlier post. [Spoiler follows] In it a crazy killer haunts Scudder and his whore girlfriend until Scudder murders the scumbag in the end in a fine act of vigilante vengeance.

Since I couldn't hold on and keep that until the Block extravaganza, I'm reading Hitman now. I've only got one other Block besides that, and I think it's called Even the Wicked. I had to smile because when I opened it up, Block had signed it. Those authors must really grit their teeth at booksignings when people show up with old piece-of-shit paperbacks they want signed. Gotta love it.

I'll report back on Hitman when I do the deed. It's a skinny book. Shouldn't take too long. And I want you to know that I sacrificed wrapping up Tidyman's Shaft to fit this one in.


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