Friday, September 30, 2011

Arguments from Authority

The Cut (Spero Lucas) (George Pelecanos)
- Highlight on Page 48 | Loc. 691-97 | Added on Friday, September 30, 2011, 07:51 AM
“What are they reading in your class, The Scarlet Letter, somethin like that?”
“We’re finishing up an Elmore Leonard,” said Leo.
“Which one?”
Unknown Man #89.”
“Good one.”
“Hell, yeah.”

The Cut (Spero Lucas) (George Pelecanos)
- Highlight on Page 75 | Loc. 1109-15 | Added on Friday, September 30, 2011, 07:49 AM
Lucas took her into Busboys and Poets, the bookstore and café that was bustling with activity, all sorts of faces and types, the D.C. most folks had wanted for a long time. He bought her a couple of novels: Lean on Pete and The Death of Sweet Mister.
“Is there a reason you picked these out?” said Constance as they stood before the register.
“You mean, am I sending you a message.”
“Yeah, like when a guy makes a mix tape for a girl.”
“Good clean writing, is all. I thought you’d like them.”

UPDATE: "After a brief period of floundering between forms, Pelecanos returns here to the P.I. procedural a stronger, more interesting novelist, not just in terms of his prose and his characters, but in terms of his reach and ambition. Unlike literary authors such as Michael Chabon and Colson Whitehead, who make calculated bombing runs at the fortress of genre from on high, Pelecanos is slowly blasting his way out, not abandoning the kinds of stories and characters that have served him so well, but deepening them, getting inside them in new ways. The result isn’t capital L literature – we’re not talking Tolstoy here – but it makes for a very satisfying read."


Tulkinghorn said...

Next he'll be having his characters talk about how much they like The Wire.

There's a point at which hommage becomes bragging, is all I'm saying.

Your readers may be interested in this, available on the website:

Busboys and Poets is a community gathering place. First established in 2005 Busboys and Poets was created by owner Anas "Andy" Shallal, an Iraqi-American artist, activist and restaurateur. After opening, the flagship location at 14th and V Streets, NW (Washington DC), the neighboring residents and the progressive community, embraced Busboys, especially activists opposed to the Iraq War. Busboys and Poets is now located in three distinctive neighborhoods in the Washington Metropolitan area and is a community resource for artists, activists, writers, thinkers and dreamers.

Tulkinghorn said...

I just heard a discussion of the new Colson Whitehead zombie novel on the BBC. The panel was spectacularly clueless. (If it's a zombie novel, why is it so arch, realisic, and unviolent?)

The book sounds to me like an odd mixture of Dreiser and George Romero.. Or maybe Zola and Stephen King.