From: Jack Bludis ( buildsnburns@yahoo.com)
Date: 14 Dec 2007

 Here's the url to a review of, TOKYO YEAR ZERO, by David Peace.

In the New York Times book review of last Sunday: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/09/books/review/Sorrentino-t.html?pagewanted=1

This looks about as noir as they get, I think rara-avians might be interested in it because the review notes:

"While contemporary crime writers are capable of more than tossing new garnishes on the dish known as "noir," too often the mystery today seems ossified, its authors still working changes on precendents well established in the middle of the last century by the good firm of Hammett, Chandler, MacDonald & Co."

He adds later:

"The resulting effect owes little to Raymond Chandler - Peace's masters would seem to be Dostoyevsky; postmodern collagists like William S. Burroughs and Kathy Acker; and practitioners of the French nouveau roman like Alain Robbe-Grillet, who borrowed from the conventions of American detective fiction to draw the reader into the ratiocinative process."

And concludes:

"While Peace implies that the fragile renaissance of Japanese society in the months after the nation's surrender relied upon formal behavior and conventions, which offered a way for a damaged people to maintain honor and dignity as they adapted to the humiliations and indelible changes brought by occupation, he also suggests that such behavior obscures much: at the heart of the novel is the strong insinuation that Kodaira's crimes - and Minami's own secret
- offer the more telling glimpse of the human soul."

This doesn't seem to be my kind of book--for whatever reason I'm not crazy about foreign settings--but as I said, it sound about a noir as book can get. It's about a serial killer and is based on a true, post-WW II case.

(Someplace on the NYTimes site is also the first chapter.)

Jack Bludis

http://crimespace.ning.com/profile/JackBludis http://jackbludis.com/ Recent Story at http://backalleywebzine.com/

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