I love Charlie Huston's Hank Thompson trilogy (Caught Stealing, etc)- he does full-energy noir better than any modern author since James Crumley. This is a very different book and also wonderful. The narrators did an excellent job of portraying the different first-person voices and the story itself is compelling and terrifying. The first chapter or so is a bit tough to key in to, since you are dropped right in the middle of the story with characters that are not yet introduced, let alone developed. Give it a chance, it's a great listen.
Ken Bruen writes wonderfully. Jack Taylor is a very interesting character. I get great references to authors who I've not read and will truly enjoy. And yet ... These stories are an unremitting slog through the life of a bad alcoholic. I really don't see the point in revistiting, time and time again, the depths to which Jack can descend while he's ruining his life with drink. It's so unfortunate - I love the location, I love the characters - I barely finished the first book and I could not finish this one.
If you like movies you'll like this book. Great discussions of how these various directors worked in the field or in Washington during the runup to WWII and during the war itself.
The divisions in our country played upon so expertly by Richard Nixon continue to plague us. The various cultures of resentment that developed throughout Nixon's career are nicely brought out in this work. The narrative is a bit uneven, due to the author's fondness for lists of contemporaneous events. Aside from that, the overall story is compellingly told and really does make clear the damage done to our nation by Nixon in his never-ending quest to get even.
Since is the first in the series, it's not too surprising that the ending of this book sounds as though the author ran out of paper and had to wrap everything up. Still, the writing is good and the characters are nicely drawn. The narrator, not so great. He fails to convey any of the sense of a hardbitten private dick and the vocal characterizations are off-putting enough to keep me away from the rest of the series, which he also narrates.
Watching a bad drunk be a bad drunk is no fun in life or literature.
This is like sitting next to a guy in a bar who puts ten different stories into every story he tells. The story itself is subsumed by a host of interesting characters who then present opportunities to diverge into other avenues which in turn split to reveal more characters. The voices assigned to these folks are wonderful and spot-on. The quality of writing and dialogue is excellent and the book does not suffer (as so many in this genre do) from unnecessary filler and angst-ridden rumination. Everything moves forward and the scenes are tightly drawn.
I look forward to some more of these.
The characters in this story are very nicely drawn. Things move along at a good pace, unlike so many works in this genre which tend to drag in the middle. The story is fairly conventional and the ending is just a bit too neat. Still in all, well worth the listen and highly entertaining. Hope Mr. Galbraith is working on a sequel.
I love Adrian McKinty's work. He can really deliver a sentence and can bring events to life in a powerful, lyrical way. Unfortunately, this book suffered from not having a whole hell of a lot going on. The central mystery is vaguely interesting, but then gets wrapped up in another one, and then the hero spends too much time wandering to and fro in Belfast. Still, it is worth the listen, for a wonderful soft irish brogue and the all-too-occasional time when something happens.
Kept waiting for something to happen - it did, but the author managed to craft an ending that was both implausible and contained every cliche about cops and gangsters.
This book starts out great. Marvelous writing style, good characters, two interesting crimes. Unfortunately, the characters don't develop and worse, they exhibit the relationship skills of high school sophomores. The investigation drags on and on and on, with an ending that is entirely predictable. For one of the crimes, that is. The other one is never resolved. To top it all off, the main character/narrator is an annoying twit.
But beautifully written.
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