I like Green Ice but it really suffers from being a chain of short stories 'fixed up' into a novel.
Do not despair, there are plenty of gripping classic hardboiled novels out there.
Jonathan Latimer's Solomon's Vineyard or Norbert Davis' The Mouse in the Mountain are both out of the Black Mask school, very different, not too hard to find, and might help reaffirm your faith in the form.
--- On Mon, 6/15/09, nyoung1uk <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
From: nyoung1uk <email@example.com>
Subject: RARA-AVIS: Raoul Whitfield
Date: Monday, June 15, 2009, 6:30 AM
I have recently finished Green Ice by Raoul Whitfield and wasn't sure what to make of it. I was initially very impressed by the distinctive style but got more and more tired of the book as I read on. I found it very hard to keep a grip on what was actually going on which wasn't helped by the large number of scenes where the one character recaps the sequence of events to another without really shedding any light on events and who was behind the relentless parade of murders. The characters mostly remained fairly opaque. Some of the stylistic elements became tiresome as well - the number of times he used ' he swore softly' was downright eccentric. What does that mean anyway? Maybe I don't really like hard-boiled writing when you get down to it but I felt defeated by this book even though I struggled my way to the end of it. The least enjoyable crime novel I have read in a long time - since Kiss Me Deadly which I also found oddly hard to read.
PS Also just finished Tart Noir, the collection of stories edited by Stella Duffy and Lauren Henderson - now that was a lot more fun!
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