Re: RARA-AVIS: Allan Guthrie's Top 200 Noirs

From: Charlie Williams (
Date: 20 Dec 2007

I wouldn't call THE MALTESE FALCON or THE BIG SLEEP noir at all. TOBACCO ROAD I would, but coming from an unusual angle. It is full of despair and hopelessness and awful actions glossed over, and things only get worse. Also each character is damned. (I often look at Thomas Hardy as noir for the same reasons. There's even a few tough colloquialisms in there.)

Interesting observation about female authors of noir, though. Maybe it's a male thing? I would have Liza Cody's BUCKET NUT books up there though.


--- In, "Jeff Vorzimmer" <jvorzimmer@...> wrote:
> Allan,
> I was looking over your Top 200 Noirs and I noted a couple of
things. First,
> I don't see any women on the list and such a list should at least
> Highsmith and Caspary or to rephrase--they really should have been
among the
> authors you read. Second, I see Boris Vian's I Spit on Your Graves,
> really isn't worthy of a Top 200 list. Third, it's a strange
definition of
> noir that allows you to include Tobacco Road, but not The Maltese
Falcon or
> The Big Sleep. Fourth, there are much better Willefords than the
two you
> list.
> That said, I must add you are still the biggest influence on what I
> Cheers,
> Jeff

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