Tuesday, January 23, 2007


Currently looking at Allan Guthrie's Kiss Her Goodbye. Powerful stuff exacty the kind of book I'[ve come to expect from Hard Case Crime. The writing is lean and sharp, the emotions at play are strong and the story makes sense - that is , the characters are doing what they must so there is a strong sense of internal logic at work here. I hope one day that I'll be able to write like this.

Have also just finished Megan Abbott's novel The Song is You. Set in the 1950s in Hollywood, it is another poetic gem about the dark and seedy side of that time and place. Wht captures my attention in an Abbott novel is her prose - she manages to capture the casual speech of the period while, at the same time, adding a poetry and elegance to her prose that is not to be found in just anyone's novel, not even in the so called "literary" novels. And the mystery is absorbing too. A real treat.

Most recently, I finished Jonathan Santlofer's novel The Anatomy of Fear. This is an excellent thriller due out in April and it taught me several things, most importantly, it is a lesson in psychological thrillers and a lesson in juggling POVs. Jonathan does this very well in all his books, but I think best here. The book contains a hundred drawings purportedly made by both the novel's serial killer and by Nate Rodriguez, the police sketch artist who helps track the man down. Wait till you find out the motive. There's also a good introduction to NYCs vibrant Santeria sect. Great book.

Also, reading the Book of Genesis (more on my other blog soon) and Gettysburg by Stephen Sears. Rock'um, sock'um action.


Blogger Graham said...

Had you met Santlofer before ConMisterio? He seems like a really interesting guy, I'll have to watch for this book.

January 23, 2007 1:39 PM  
Blogger Steven said...

Nope. Met both Megan and Jonathan in Austin. Both excellent writers and great people. They were on a panel in ConMisterio along with Sean Doolittle - Can Women Write Mysteries or some such. Can't remember what they finally decided on the issue...

January 23, 2007 2:19 PM  
Blogger Hard Man said...

"I hope one day that I'll be able to write like this."

Steven, I'm staggered you should think that. Thank you.

January 24, 2007 9:07 AM  
Blogger Steven said...

I'm flattered that you'd be staggered... Actually, ou've put together a very neat story - truly gripping writing. Take this from a man who can easily put down even a very good novel (I've been reading Thomas Mann's Buddenbrooks since 1994) your book is a pageturner.

January 24, 2007 1:34 PM  

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