Re: RARA-AVIS: Bloch as a Crime Writer

From: Richard Moore (
Date: 11 Feb 2008

I liked Bloch's THE DEAD BEAT too when I read it way back in the early 1960s. I had the paperback--Popular Library as I recall. I wonder if it would hold up? Mysteries too tied to music trends or hipster lingo date very badly. It's like watching a rerun of "77 Sunset Strip" and listening to Kookie go through his patter. Too gone Daddy.

You can count me as one of the few surviving fans of the late David Alexander (1907-1973), author of the Bart Hardin series and one of the best reporters of thoroughbred horse racing in history. His articles provided some of the first-hand background for the excellent book SEABISCUIT that dominated best seller lists a few years ago. But I found the calypso background of DEAD, MAN, DEAD (Lippincott 1959) a bit tedious, although in 1959 it probably played well. The novel was redeemed somewhat by the crazed ventriloquist with his two dummies Hunch and Trudy. Not much chance of a revival, even of Alexander's best novels. I doubt there is a market these days for mapcap mysteries.

Richard Moore

--- In, ejgorman99@... wrote:
> I'm in a minority here. I'm so much of a Bob Bloch fan that I like
The Dead
> Beat. Intersting take on the beat musician as psychopath.
> **************
> Biggest
> Grammy Award surprises of all time on AOL Music.
> (
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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