Sunday, November 13, 2011

Tin Roof Blowdown Redux

Like I said, I just read "Tin Roof Blowdown" by James Lee Burke. There is a lesson here for understanding the nature of the 21st Century. My paperback edition was chock full of wild praise from quality sources, the New York Times, other high-tone newspapers in at least two English speaking countries. I say wild praise, it was indeed hyperbolic praise, superlatives even. Deserved?

It's a nice book, but I don't think Shakespeare is in any danger of being overtaken. Nor, I think, should Charles Williford or Elmore Leonard be too worried. Nor the very underrated George V. Higgins. Nor Dash Hammett or that L.A. fellow, Raymond Something. Mickey Spillane is probably safe too. Hemingway? Definitely safe.

So praise these days comes by the bushel, and must be discounted accordingly. Be forewarned.

I did enjoy reading "The Tin Roof Blowdown," but I am famously easy to please. I do read some actually literary novels, some old, some new, but I do enjoy the occasional "railway novel," commuter stuff, read to fill time on the train or bus. Or just to kill time waiting for the inevitable. Anything, God, just make this whole thing go away.

I've read worse; but I could recommend better.

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