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Crime Fiction Thread 2.0. - Page 55

post #2701 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Subotai View Post

 

 

My only beef is that Sung Kang (born in Atlanta, BTW, and 40 years old) is hands-down way too good for this Walter Hill crap.  And while we're at it, Stallone, a diminutive 66 year-old, is strictly speaking not the best choice either.  But I admit, he can play a white guy.


Not a fan of Walter Hill at all?

post #2702 of 3060

Hell yeah, but he hasn't done much of note since Wild Bill, and this doesn't look like anything to write home about.
 

post #2703 of 3060

Another worthwhile recent crime comic is John Arcudi's The Creep.

 

post #2704 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeb View Post

Another worthwhile recent crime comic is John Arcudi's The Creep.

 

That looks awesome, thanks. Gorgeous art and coloring. What's it about, exactly? Sounds a little horror-ish.

post #2705 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Subotai View Post

Hell yeah, but he hasn't done much of note since Wild Bill, and this doesn't look like anything to write home about.
 

I'm a fan of Last Man Standing, just for the atmosphere. Bullet To The Head looks just awful. The comic is good, but suffers from aping Tarantino too much. I mean, the book starts with two hitmen on the way to a job and bullshitting with each other. It works as a comic and a faithful adaptation would just look like a rip-off of his old crime movie tics.

post #2706 of 3060

Yeah, I didn't find it anywhere nearly as good as The Killer.
 

post #2707 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Subotai View Post

Yeah, I didn't find it anywhere nearly as good as The Killer.
 


Speaking of The Killer, an omnibus is coming out.

post #2708 of 3060

Quote:

Originally Posted by Subotai View Post

 

 

My only beef is that Sung Kang (born in Atlanta, BTW, and 40 years old) is hands-down way too good for this Walter Hill crap.  And while we're at it, Stallone, a diminutive 66 year-old, is strictly speaking not the best choice either.  But I admit, he can play a white guy.

 

  Matz makes Jimmy Marvel a totally sociopathic character.  Stallone would never in a million years play a character like that, one who would carelessly kill a 12 year old girl.  I mean, c'mon, has American Crime films gone so soft that they have to inject Judeo Christian morality into everything?  The French seem to easily forget all that and just make really cool existentialist crime pictures.

 

   I actually do not care that they changed the cop character to an Asian American; mainly because this isn't a character that has a 50 year history, and tons of fans are expecting to look a certain way, but I suspect that it's a ploy to attract that Chris Tucker/Jackie Chan mojo, where we get all the cute Asian jokes by Stallone, then have Stallone make cute Asian comments, only to see Kang roll his eyes and go, "Oh, Jimmy!".  Come on--that's Saturday Morning cartoon crap.  If they're going to have an Asian character be the cop buddy, make him a mature adult who wouldn't even listen to Stallone's race baiting without slapping him across the chops.

post #2709 of 3060
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron Hughes View Post

I'm a fan of Last Man Standing, just for the atmosphere. Bullet To The Head looks just awful. The comic is good, but suffers from aping Tarantino too much. I mean, the book starts with two hitmen on the way to a job and bullshitting with each other. It works as a comic and a faithful adaptation would just look like a rip-off of his old crime movie tics.

 

   I feel compelled to reply to this:  I agree with Cameron to an extent, but the thing I found satisfying about Bullet to the Head and to a greater extent The Killer, is Matz's not bowing one bit to American, Judeo-Christian beliefs.  His characters do what they do, and don't care if anyone gives a squat.  Tarrantino's hitmen in Pulp Fiction--one gets killed by Bruce Willis and the other get's "Born Again".  So to some extent he's making his hitmen pay the penalty--either you get killed for your misdeeds or you better repent.

post #2710 of 3060

Megan Abbott actually wrote an issue of The Punisher, you read it Cameron?
 

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=40088

 

I hope Abbott goes back to that Normandy Gold story, it sounds awesome.

post #2711 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanW View Post

Megan Abbott actually wrote an issue of The Punisher, you read it Cameron?
 

http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=40088

 

I hope Abbott goes back to that Normandy Gold story, it sounds awesome.


No, I only read trades.

post #2712 of 3060

There's a lot of great crime writing being done in comics right now--perhaps more than in any time in comic book history.  Crime Fiction writers are jumping over the comic fence, and vice-versa.  I think it's great.  Not all crime comics are of a high standard, obviously, I've seen some real clunkers, but not every crime novel is great either.  Like anything else, whether it's cinema, painting, television, books, whatever, there's maybe 5% that's jaw dropping brilliant, 15% that's truly good work, 50% of mind numbing mediocrity, and 30% that's utter trash. 

 

I wouldn't say Bullet to the Head or The Killer falls in the brilliant category, but falls solidly in the truly good one.

 

At least, that's my take.

post #2713 of 3060

Has anyone read an ARC of Ghostman by Roger Hobbs?  I have this on my to-buy list, and I'd like to know if it's as great as everyone is saying.

post #2714 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave618 View Post

Has anyone read an ARC of Ghostman by Roger Hobbs?  I have this on my to-buy list, and I'd like to know if it's as great as everyone is saying.

It is good. Sort of show-offy in his research, but good. Very much a first novel.

post #2715 of 3060
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cameron Hughes View Post

It is good. Sort of show-offy in his research, but good. Very much a first novel.

 

   Thanks, Cameron.  And allow me to apologise to you and Lauren for my behavior; I reviewed some of my comments and I DEFINITELY went too far.  Sometimes I am an A-Hole, of the very strongest kind. 

post #2716 of 3060
While we're at it, let's all agree that The Following is crap and not worth mentioning here again.
post #2717 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave618 View Post

 

   Thanks, Cameron.  And allow me to apologise to you and Lauren for my behavior; I reviewed some of my comments and I DEFINITELY went too far.  Sometimes I am an A-Hole, of the very strongest kind. 


Thanks. Off ignore. See January Magazine's Best of Year list?

 

http://januarymagazine.blogspot.com/2013/01/best-books-of-2012-fiction.html

There are links to all categories. My write-ups are in crime and fiction.

post #2718 of 3060

I'm not sure if I've posted this already but Megan Abbott interviewed Elmore Leonard, it's pretty good, he's not a fan of Stieg Larsson.

 

http://www.latimesmagazine.com/2012/04/qla-elmore-leonard.html
 

Also, for those who haven't read Dare Me, do so. This article is more than enough reason.

 

http://theater.nytimes.com/2012/07/29/theater/megan-abbott-on-cheerleaders-in-pop-culture.html?_r=2&pagewanted=all

post #2719 of 3060

Elmore Leonard is the best.

post #2720 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Elmore Leonard is the best.


And he makes it looks so fucking EASY. I love his rules too. "Don't write the parts readers skip." and "Don't start with the weather." It's no wonder he hates Larsson, that hack, he's such an awful writer. I don't trust people that like those books, like Dan Brown fans.

 

You can really see the influence Leonard has on Megan Abbot.

 

Winslow was on the phone with him a few months ago, giddy because he worships Leonard, and Leonard put him in his place in such a beautiful, classy way. "You were three and a half years old when I wrote 3:10 To Yuma." BOOM! I loved it.

post #2721 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Elmore Leonard is the best.


A reason most of his adaptations suck is that Hollywood either makes purely comedies or action movies out of his books. Only Tarantino, Soderbergh, and Sonnenfield got it.

post #2722 of 3060
Thread Starter 

I like a lot of Lehane's Mystic River, but I do think it's a little over-rated. One novel that runs circles around it is T. Jefferson Parker's California Girl, which covers similar themes. It's about four brothers and a girl named Janelle Von who they keep running into in the 60's until she's murdered in 1968. It's really about California (specifically Laguna) from the 60's to the new century and how much has and hasn't changed and covers topics like Vietnam, hippies, The insidious John Birch Society, etc. It's just an outstanding read and deservedly won the Edgar.

 

I also really like William Landay's The Strangler, about three brothers in 60's Boston and a friend is killed by what looks like The Boston Strangler. It's a much smaller story than Mystic River and especially California Girl, but no less great.
 

post #2723 of 3060

Dennis Lehane's a weird writer for me anyway. Like I respect him a great deal and he's obviously got tons of talent, but a lot of his work leaves me utterly cold. But I'm honesty the weird person who's favorite Patrick Kenzie* novel is Sacred.

 

 

 

 

*And I know the name for the series is the "Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennero series" but that implies a degree of equal billing, which is SO not the case.

post #2724 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Dennis Lehane's a weird writer for me anyway. Like I respect him a great deal and he's obviously got tons of talent, but a lot of his work leaves me utterly cold. But I'm honesty the weird person who's favorite Patrick Kenzie* novel is Sacred.

 

 

 

 

*And I know the name for the series is the "Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennero series" but that implies a degree of equal billing, which is SO not the case.


One of my favorite things about those books is when he inevitably writes Angie out. Always fucking happens. She's a great character and iconic, but it is the Patrick Kenzie Show.

 

I, too, like Sacred the best. It's a great riff on The Big Sleep. Reclusive rich old man hires detective. Great femme fatale, very funny, and a really satisfying ending.

post #2725 of 3060

Hahahahah I think I rolled my eyes in Moonlight Mile when she's practically shipped off for a massive chunk of the book.

 

 

Probably also why Sacred is my favorite! Angie actually gets to do shit in it.

post #2726 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanW View Post

I'm not sure if I've posted this already but Megan Abbott interviewed Elmore Leonard, it's pretty good, he's not a fan of Stieg Larsson.

 

http://www.latimesmagazine.com/2012/04/qla-elmore-leonard.html
 

Also, for those who haven't read Dare Me, do so. This article is more than enough reason.

 

http://theater.nytimes.com/2012/07/29/theater/megan-abbott-on-cheerleaders-in-pop-culture.html?_r=2&pagewanted=all


The comments in the interview are making me sad.

post #2727 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Hahahahah I think I rolled my eyes in Moonlight Mile when she's practically shipped off for a massive chunk of the book.

 

 

Probably also why Sacred is my favorite! Angie actually gets to do shit in it.


Babies kill, most of the time, crime series. Still, I loved the excuse for her to leave in that book.

 

Boring book, anyway. You could tell his heart wasn't in it. I do really love his 20's gangster novel Live By Night, however.

post #2728 of 3060

Moonlight Mile also totally suffers from MAGIC LESBIAN!

 

 

Also it serves to just make Patrick's decision at the end of Gone Baby Gone look like the idea of an idiot. I was actually frankly aghast at that.

post #2729 of 3060

Also while I'm feeling bitter! Bubba remains one of my least favorite 'sociopathic" sidekicks in any PI series.

post #2730 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Moonlight Mile also totally suffers from MAGIC LESBIAN!

 

 

Also it serves to just make Patrick's decision at the end of Gone Baby Gone look like the idea of an idiot. I was actually frankly aghast at that.


That was my problem with Prayers For Rain. People told him that the guy was really mean and a sexist and probably totally right putting that little girl back with her alcoholic emotionally distant and abusive and neglecting mother who was involved in drug dealing. Even Angie said he was probably right! Made any power of Gone, Baby, Gone go right out the window. And I LIKED Prayers!

 

Magic Lesbian? I don't remember that!

post #2731 of 3060

Isn't there an older lesbian lady in Moonlight Mile who basically exists to only be sympathetic, showcase Patrick's liberal attitudes, and make another guy look like a big piece of shit? Because that part of the book still makes me wince slightly.

 

 

 

Quote:
That was my problem with Prayers For Rain. People told him that the guy was really mean and a sexist and probably totally right putting that little girl back with her alcoholic emotionally distant and abusive and neglecting mother. Even Angie said he was probably right! Made any power of Gone, Baby, Gone go right out the window.

 

 

 

Hhahaha I forgot about that in Prayers For Rain!

 

 

 

God I sound like I'm bashing on Lehane WAY more than I should!

post #2732 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Also while I'm feeling bitter! Bubba remains one of my least favorite 'sociopathic" sidekicks in any PI series.


Aww, I like Bubba. The one I've grown to hate is Harlan Coben's Win.

post #2733 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Isn't there an older lesbian lady in Moonlight Mile who basically exists to only be sympathetic, showcase Patrick's liberal attitudes, and make another guy look like a big piece of shit? Because that part of the book still makes me wince slightly.

 

 

 

 

 

Hhahaha I forgot about that in Prayers For Rain!

 

 

 

God I sound like I'm bashing on Lehane WAY more than I should!


I honestly don't remember much of Moonlight Mile besides the illegal baby ring and the fact that little Amanda would have been totally better off with the mean old cop and his wife and not her abusive, alcoholic, drug dealing and drug mule mother.

 

While I LIKE the book A Drink Before The War, it was totally "Look what I learned in my liberal sociology 101 class!" with Angie as the conservative counter-point at the end. It's amazing he wrote good episodes of The Wire.

 

I like Lehane, I swear I do. It was just a highly overrated series.

post #2734 of 3060
Thread Starter 

The Sociopath Sidekick needs to die with Robert B. Parker. He did it first, he did it best. Books like Don Winslow's The Dawn Patrol and Sean Chercover's excellent Ray Dudgeon series proves you don't need it. Time to grow up, everybody, you've missed the point of Hawk.
 

post #2735 of 3060

It's a good thing I stopped after reading Sacred then.

post #2736 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanW View Post

It's a good thing I stopped after reading Sacred then.


Sacred is my favorite I think, because it's the pulpiest. Weird, reclusive rich old man. Femme Fatale daughter, the best use of the series side characters ever (I love his lawyer Cheswick who likes fucking with police), a genuinely sweet romance between Patrick and Angie and a really kick-ass ending. You could tell Lehane was having fun.

 

Also, Sacred is funny. Patrick trying to infiltrate the cult (while Angie sneaks and breaks in to steal shit) and his first reaction to the cult's hulking security Manny is hilarious.

 

Gone, Baby, Gone is really good, though! Worth it, at least, for Cheese, the obese Polish drug dealer who talks like Snoop Dogg and the scene where Patrick and Bubba do a rampage at the house of a clan of child rapists and murderers.

post #2737 of 3060
Thread Starter 

Lauren's gonna run out of rep with my posts today.
 

post #2738 of 3060

Bubba just always felt like he existed because all the other Private Eye books had a crazy sidekick and that's something he needed to write about as well. I also always felt like Bubba acted more like a big cuddly teddy bear than the frightful sociopath he's frequently described as.

 

But yeah outside of Hawk and Mouse* I find the tougher sidekick to be one of the most dull tropes in PI fiction.

 

 

 

 

*If Mouse can really be counted as a sidekick. He's usually more of a loose cannon.

post #2739 of 3060
Quote:
Sacred is my favorite I think, because it's the pulpiest. Weird, reclusive rich old man. Femme Fatale daughter, the best use of the series side characters ever (I love his lawyer Cheswick who likes fucking with police), a genuinely sweet romance between Patrick and Angie and a really kick-ass ending. You could tell Lehane was having fun.

 

It's totally the best for those reasons!

 

 

Also it gets them out of Boston(and most of all Dorchester!) for huge swaths of the book!

post #2740 of 3060

Sacred is such a fun book. Would make a great movie, although with a markedly different tone than Gone Baby Gone.

post #2741 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Bubba just always felt like he existed because all the other Private Eye books had a crazy sidekick and that's something he needed to write about as well. I also always felt like Bubba acted more like a big cuddly teddy bear than the frightful sociopath he's frequently described as.

 

But yeah outside of Hawk and Mouse* I find the tougher sidekick to be one of the most dull tropes in PI fiction.

 

 

 

 

*If Mouse can really be counted as a sidekick. He's usually more of a loose cannon.

The point of Hawk and Mouse (a really good example I forgot about!) is to provide a counter-point to the detective. He's darker and more willing to go places the hero won't and unless the writer is good (Like Parker in Early Autumn where Hawk is willing to shoot an un-conscious thug), they don't lamp-shade this. Like Spenser, Hawk only has one name. Spenser is white. Hawk is black. Spenser loves only one woman. Hawk doesn't love anyone (Except Spenser and Susan. ) Spenser was raised by loving uncles. Hawk toughed it out in a ghetto. Spenser makes a living helping people. Hawk makes his money breaking legs and killing when not hanging out with Spenser. Also, crucially, you believe in the relationship.

 

Most writers of P.I. series don't get this and Lehane's Bubba and Coben's Win are the worst offenders. They exist, solely, as comedic violent relief.
 

post #2742 of 3060

Actually I'm kind of interested in the general reaction to Sacred. Like I've always assumed it's considered along with Prayers for Rain(which does kinda suck) to generally be the least loved of the series.

post #2743 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

Actually I'm kind of interested in the general reaction to Sacred. Like I've always assumed it's considered along with Prayers for Rain(which does kinda suck) to generally be the least loved of the series.

I always thought Gone, Baby, Gone was the most loved of the books, especially after the movie. Sacred may be my favorite, but I think that's the best one.

 

I wanna write a P.I. novel now where the sociopath sidekick either dies or goes to prison at the end.

post #2744 of 3060
Quote:

The point of Hawk and Mouse (a really good example I forgot about!) is to provide a counter-point to the detective. He's darker and more willing to go places the hero won't and unless the writer is good (Like Parker in Early Autumn where Hawk is willing to shoot an un-conscious thug), they don't lamp-shade this. Like Spenser, Hawk only has one name. Spenser is white. Hawk is black. Spenser loves only one woman. Hawk doesn't love anyone (Except Spenser and Susan. ) Spenser was raised by loving uncles. Hawk toughed it out in a ghetto. Spenser makes a living helping people. Hawk makes his money breaking legs and killing when not hanging out with Spenser. Also, crucially, you believe in the relationship.

 

 

It also adds just that little bit of shadiness that I like with Spenser. Unlike a lot of PI's he's not generally aghast at associating with confirmed leg-breakers and other shady figures, so long as they seemingly follow a code close to his own.

 

 

Lots of old-fashioned Western attitudes there.

 

 

 

Quote:
Most writers of P.I. series don't get this and Lehane's Bubba and Coben's Win are the worst offenders. They exist, solely, as comedic and violent relief.

 

I kinda want to add Joe Pike to that list too.

 

I actually like the first few Elvis Cole novels(in so far as they read like the coked-up Shane Black versions of Robert B. Parker novels) but once Crais added the SUPER-SERIOUS BACKSTORY at the heart of Joe Pike, I had to stop.

post #2745 of 3060

I enjoyed Sacred, it was a fun detective story and after the relentlessly grim Darkness, Take My Hand that's probably what Lehane needed.

post #2746 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

 

It also adds just that little bit of shadiness that I like with Spenser. Unlike a lot of PI's he's not generally aghast at associating with confirmed leg-breakers and other shady figures, so long as they seemingly follow a code close to his own.

 

 

Lots of old-fashioned Western attitudes there.

 

 

 

 

I kinda want to add Joe Pike to that list too.

 

I actually like the first few Elvis Cole novels(in so far as they read like the coked-up Shane Black versions of Robert B. Parker novels) but once Crais added the SUPER-SERIOUS BACKSTORY at the heart of Joe Pike, I had to stop.

That back-story was always there, just not explicit. There's mention of it in The Monkey's Raincoat.

 

My favorite Elvis is when they go to N'Awlins!

 

I actually like Pike a lot, he and Elvis seem like real friends and L.A. Requiem explains that connection a lot, they were both lost kids in bad situations.

 

Robert Crais is one of the coolest guys ever too. Cracked up and high-fived me when I said I didn't like a book of his.

post #2747 of 3060

I actually REALLY like the Elvis Cole series all the way to Sunset Express! The series at that point really did read like the hipper, more action-packed L.A. version of Spenser.

 

Granted I'm somewhat of a minority at falling a bit out of love with the series as it went along. Mostly because I've always felt that Crais sort of stopped attempting to ape Robert B. Parker and started aping Michael Connelly, which he was never as good at.

 

But I realize I am REALLY the minority on that view.

post #2748 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

I actually REALLY like the Elvis Cole series all the way to Sunset Express! The series at that point really did read like the hipper, more action-packed L.A. version of Spenser.

 

Granted I'm somewhat of a minority at falling a bit out of love with the series as it went along. Mostly because I've always felt that Crais sort of stopped attempting to ape Robert B. Parker and started aping Michael Connelly, which he was never as good at.

 

But I realize I am REALLY the minority on that view.


I've always pictured Paul Rudd after a little time at the gym as Elvis. Crazy?

post #2749 of 3060

No I totally imagined Paul Rudd or Bradley Cooper as Elvis.

 

Also Ray Stevenson as Pike for some reason.

post #2750 of 3060
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurenOrtega View Post

No I totally imagined Paul Rudd or Bradley Cooper as Elvis.

 

Also Ray Stevenson as Pike for some reason.


I totally want a buddy cop movie starring Paul Rudd and Bradley Cooper now!

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