To his friends, to his coworkers, and even to his mistress, Moira, Roy Dillon is an honest, hardworking salesman. He lives in a cheap hotel just within his pay bracket. He goes to work every day. He has hundreds of friends and associates who could attest to his good character.
Yet hidden behind three gaudy clown paintings in Roy's pallid hotel room sits $52,000 - the money Roy makes from his short cons, his "grifting". For years, Roy has effortlessly maintained control over his house-of-cards life - until the simplest con goes wrong, and he finds himself critically injured and at the mercy of the most dangerous woman he ever met: his own mother.
The Grifters, one of the best novels ever written about the art of the con, is an ingeniously crafted story of deception and betrayal that was the basis for Stephen Frears' and Martin Scorsese's critically acclaimed film of the same name.
©2011 Jim Thompson (P)2011 Hachette
This is a marvelous twist-a- thon where nobody is even close to the way they appear. The plot is so easy to "spoil", I'll just say you won't be disappointed.
Barbara Rosenblat is a genius narrator. She does men convincingly, making boy-girl conversations seem like two actors working. But the voices she gives the women, whiskey-soaked and cigarette damaged, recall noir femme-fatales from Lauren Bacall to Kathleen Turner.
I listened to this book in black and white!
Grifters! So much promise in a title. Unfortunately this pulp fiction from 60 years ago does not keep up with the novel writing we have come to expect in the 2000's. Do yourself a favor and let this slow moving iceberg slide into the tropics of time and melt away.
Tedious, slow, dated...
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