RARA-AVIS: Dover Beach

From: DJ-Anonyme@webtv.net
Date: 05 Nov 2008

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    Years ago (wow, just checked, nine years ago), during one of our periodic discussions of hardboiled/noir sci-fi, Jiro Kimura highly recommended Richard Bowker's Dover Beach. I started half-heartedly looking for it. Never searched online, but I'd check for it in the sci-fi sections any used bookstores I happened to be in.

    Finally found it last week. And it is very good. Walter Sands opens a private eye office in post-apocalyptic Boston, pretty much entirely due to the crime novels he's read (many people tell him he's read too many books). A client wanders in wanting Walter to find the scientist whose clone he believes himself to be. Walter's skeptical the man's really a clone, but he's happy to take the case. While certainly satisfying as a hardboiled private eye novel, the book is simultaneously an homage and even a subtle deconstruction of the genre, as Walter compares his case to those of Spade, Marlowe and Archer.

    So, thanks for the recommendation Jiro, if you're still around these parts.


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