Sunday, May 15, 2005

Another novel

after a long day of school stuff (both frivolous and substantive), Robert Crais's latest, The Forgotten Man. Crais is a very good writer, so much better than the average that I feel like a heel complaining about this book. But it's a bit of a mess, bits and pieces all over the place and not all coming together. I am a sucker for the burnt-out female cop characters, so I wanted more of the Starkey love plot thing (this character's from Demolition Angel, which I really loved)--maybe this hook-up is going to happen in the next one? But I imagine other different readers would want completely different things from the book, and it never really stayed on a single track that made sense. It's the difficulty, I guess, of writing a multi-voice book; not sure the downside is worth the conjectural payoff. (There was an interesting discussion of this novel in February at Sarah Weinman's.)

(Also, Crais and Cole are sort of the twins of Connelly and Bosch in the same way that I always secretly mix up Peter Robinson's Banks and Reginald Hill's Pascoe. Not to blame the authors, I'm sure they're tapping into the zeitgeist, but I do in the end most like the writers who are insane one-offs.)


  1. Quick question Jenny - re Reginald Hill - do you get the TV series of the books over there? I haven't read the books but love the TV! Just wonder how such British thing goes down. also have you read any Michael Dibdin?

  2. Haven't seen the TV, though I expect it's possible to get it on DVD? I really, really like Michael Dibdin, though I also greedily read all of his Aurelio Zen books in about 6 days and it left me with the feeling of surfeit. But he's great, isn't it?

  3. oh I am glad you said that! love Dibdin! yes gobble them up as quickly as possible. I am very picky about my 'light reading' - I find I can't handle anything badly written and of course Dibdin is beautifully written.