Listening to an audiobook in French
© Peter Rozovsky 2017
"Because Murder is More Fun Away From Home"
I've realized during my listening that Doyle dangled participles and modifiers all the time, and that this doesn't matter much. So, if you can write as popular and enduring a character as Sherlock Holmes, and if you can read as well as Stephen Frye, you can go ahead and dangle all you like."I can never bring you to realize the importance of sleeves, the suggestiveness of thumbnails, or the great issues that may hang from a boot lace.""Forgive this weakness, Mr. Holmes. I have been a little overwrought. Thank you. If I might have a glass of milk and a biscuit, I have no doubt that I should be better."
-- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, "A Case of Identity"
-- "The Adventure of the Priory School"
"... ranging from his famous investigation of the sudden death of Cardinal Tosca—an inquiry which was carried out by him at the express desire of His Holiness the Pope—down to his arrest of Wilson, the notorious canary-trainer, which removed a plague-spot from the East-End of London."
-- "The Adventure of Black Peter"
"I read death on his face as plain as I can read that text over the fire."
-- "The Adventure of the Crooked Man" (This one works better if one recalls the sense in which text seems most often to be used these days. It would not shock me if some people think text means only text message.)
"Ah, I have no data. I cannot tell."
"'Data, data, data!' he cried impatiently. 'I can't make bricks without clay!'"
-- "The Adventure of the Copper Beaches"
"Keegan had thick dry brown hair and the outraged expression of a barroom arguer."Here's the discussion so far:
|Rick Ollerman enjoys a|
moment of nail-biting
suspense. Photos by
Peter Rozovsky for
|Nick Kolakowski, Suzanne Solomon.|
|Hellenistic dramatic mask|
|Albert Tucher, Jen Conley, Suzanne Solomon, Terrence McCauley|
“I think at first my books were whodunits, but as I got more confident about the form and about what the crime novel could do, I thought, ‘Well there’s nothing it can’t do.’ If you want to talk about politics, if you want to talk about society, if you want to talk about good and evil, if you want to talk about big moral issues, big moral questions: here’s the perfect form for doing that.”That's an unexceptionable thought, but why, fifty-two years after Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö's Roseanna first appeared, after decades and decades and decades of Dominique Manotti and Jean-Claude Izzo and Andrea Camilleri and Manuel Vázquez Montalbán and Didier Daeninckx and Carlo Lucarelli and Adrian McKinty and Jean-Patrick Manchette and Leonardo Sciascia and Ross Thomas and Garbhan Downey and Stuart Neville and John McFetridge and Gary Phillips and Alan Glynn, do the article's author, Daneet Steffens, and publication, Lit Hub, think crime novels' ability to do more than tell a whodunit story is so newsworthy as to be the story's main subject and the subject of its headline? And that's not even to mention, say, Georges Simenon, who probed human psychology and the margins of society long before Daneet Stevens discovered that crime stories can be more than whodunits.
"I've just opened Martin Edwards' Waterloo Sunset," I wrote a few years ago, "and I've noticed reflections on urban growth and boosterism, not to mention a character who just might be disturbingly demented. I hadn't expected this from an author who has proclaimed his allegiance to traditional mysteries. Heck, the man even named his novel for a song by the Kinks.What are your favorite crime novels that are thoroughly contemporary in subject and tone yet brave enough to explore traditional crime fiction forms at the same time?
"The hospital was as noisy a place as Harsh had ever been in."To my mind that's one of the best opening sentences ever. Do you agree? If so, why? Disagree? If so, why?
"I like the Eddie Coyle film, but Underworld, U.S.A. is definitely the better film, in my view. But Sam Fuller is indeed a great director, one of the best crime/action directors of them all, and solid as Peter Yates is, he's no Fuller when it comes to packing a cinematic punch. Still, those two movies are hard to compare because their styles are so different. Fuller's the master of pulpy tabloid style, very kinetic crime stories, and Eddie Coyle is, as said here, the flip side, to all that."I take Scott's comment as supporting my position for two reasons: One is that he speaks more knowledgeably than I can about Samuel Fuller's superiority as a director. The other is that with the exception of Scott's comments and, to a lesser extent, Mike Dennis/Don Donovan's, the commenters replied to my (perceived) slight of Eddie Coyle the movie by defending Eddie Coyle the book. What does that tell you about the movie?
"You know where I stand on Higgins (you fucking communist!) :) but to be fair, there are a number of his other works I had (to quote William Buckley discussing Atlas Shrugged) “to flog myself” to finish (and some never were finished). That said (you fucking communist!), I’ll have to read the other author you mentioned. The musings on the Boston common, if I’m thinking about the same scene, I’m pretty sure is Dillon (not Doyle) … I read a bio on Higgins last summer (I think) … the guy had issues, no doubt, and he probably would’ve hated me and my politics, but I remain a sycophant to his dialogue and ability to portray what the real world of organized crime was like (very different from the horseshit in The Godfather, for instance)."And here's what he has to see about Higgins, in a guest post at The Rap Sheet .
|Adrian McKinty. Photo by Peter|
Rozovsky for Detectives
|Angel Colón reads.|
Photos by Peter Rozovsky
|Look closely. That vessel next to|
the book is not a gift-set jam jar.
|From left: Scott Adlerberg, Angel Colón, Dave White|
|Max Allan Collins. |
Photos by Peter
|Rob Brunet (right) and me (left) in Toronto.|
I shot him right in his kitchen.
|John McFetridge at the Art|
Gallery of Ontario in Toronto. I
shot him at the museum.
|Clea Simon with Jon Garelick in |
Harvard Square, Cambridge.
I shot them at the bookstore.
|Linda L. Richards and your humble blopkeeper|
captured by a young crime writer about whom you
may hear much in the near future. She shot us
in a bar.
|Rob Brunet almost fell on his ass |
answering the door. I shot him anyhow.
|Linda took me up to a gorgeous bridge|
in Vancouver. Then she shot us both.
|Museum of Anthropology at the University of British|
Columbia. Photos by Peter Rozovsky for Detectives
|Montreal-style bagels in Vancouver|
|Lions Gate Bridge|
|Sam Wiebe, Michael Pool, Linda L. Richards,|
|Lions Gate Bridge|
|"Double Meditation on Looking: Linda 2016." Digital|
iPhone print, artist's private collection
|Sam Wiebe, Dietrich Kalteis, SG Wong, E.C. Bell,|
Janie Chang, Linda L. Richards