Books


#842

New series of ‘Bosch’ starts tonight on FTA. Still looking for his mother’s murderer.


#843

I thought he’d solved that. That storyline crosses over with the characters from the Lincoln Lawyer movie. They’re not allowed to use any of those characters in the TV series as its producers hold all rights.

This series largely covers the book, Angels Flight, the funicular railway in downtown LA (where no tourists ever go) which was written around the time of the Rodney King riots. Of course, the TV series is set in the modern day.

In the books, Harry is now a 66-yo working pro bono for a small city in The Valley. Series 5 is based on the latest Bosch book, Two Kinds of Truth. Another, Dark Sacred Night, is due out late next month.


#844

I’m not against them having personal lives, it’s just that most of them are so boring. Bosch has a new soulmate in every book. Wallander is permanently morose. Etc. I sometimes think I should write a book about a detective who’s happy and has a loving wife and happy healthy kids who don’t get into trouble and don’t get taken by serial killers either. It might sell on novelty value.


#845

Bosch hasn’t had too many sheilas over the journey. He met Eleanor, married her, fathered a daughter he only found out about years later, and she now figures in all his books. But it’s only occasionally he pulls a steady root. I reckon he spends more time punching the Spaniard.

Don’t read Jo Nesbo. His man, Harry Hole, is a miserable drunk.

Matt Scudder and Dave Robicheaux are recovering alcoholics. Mitch Rapp’s wife got blown up.

Jack Irish doesn’t have too much success with commitment.


#846

I’m nothing like an expert on crime fiction, but was Maigret’s private life unconventionally prosaic? He wandered home for a cooked lunch in at least one of the novels I read.
Meanwhile I’ve just knocked off the latest in Benjamin Black’s series (AKA John Banville, the Booker prize winner who seems to spend more time slumming it as B. Black as he ages). “Even the Dead’s” crimeline is thin and, dare I say it, predictable but he has definitely perfected the crime fiction thing and basically does it in 2nd gear. The protagonist Quirke is middle aged and sexually active, as they tend to be, and it appears pathologists get plenty of time off to pursue cases the cops struggle with. He’s dumped his actress and moved in on a sexy shrink and his health and his family is falling apart but never mind, there’s a dead body, a commie’s son, a distraught and pregnant girlfriend , a corrupt church and government and Dublin in the 50s which means plenty of Guinness on tap, although our lush of a protagonist prefers the harder stuff.
Having said all that, Black is clearing the decks, renovatng Quirke’s middle aged love life, shipping off his assistant pathologist, and his daughter’s alleged boyfriend, to Israel to fight the good Jewish fight, and killing off the key nemesis.
It all ends with enough questions to justify more sequels and Black/Banville seems to write more crime than literary fiction nowadays. I don’t mind, he still produces high class prose , even when he’s in crime gear.


#847

You’re right about Maigret: home for lunch with his wife every day. Unless he was in the middle of questioning a crook, in which case he would send out for beer and sandwiches.

He did have the occasional dalliance with a compliant lady, but nothing that threatened his home life.


#848

Whereas Holmes and Watson were clearly having the hawt tweedy sexings together all over foggy London Town, even though Watson did shack up with a beard for a while there cos Conan Doyle was too chicken to make it official.


#849

I’m afraid I’m not quite sure what you’re saying there, but Watson definitely liked ladies, and one in particular whom he married.


#850

Sally Rooney is such an effortlessly natural writer it’s easy to see why there was a bidding war over this, her debut novel, ‘Conversations With Friends’. It’s a compulsively readable modern exposition of the emotional and physical entanglements of a very singular young woman. Frances, the protagonist and narrator, is bi curious, very ■■■■■■ curious, an eye opening mixture of female passive aggression and appetite. Nick, the male subject of her ardour is incredibly handsome, married and utterly pliable, frustratingly so for his wife and his mistress, the type who root around to convince themselves they’re not gay. The female interest, Bobbi, is equally gorgeous but otherwise everything he is not, assertive, polemical and judgmental. The protagonist loves both of them, platonically and carnally, and ultimately doesn’t want to choose. It’s an issue.

It could be read as an extended inquisition of the metaphysical concept of marriage(or any intense relationship) as the fusing of two souls, Frances is clearly captive to her own yearning consciousness, even in the midst of hot steamy sex, of which there is quite a bit in the novel. The oneness myth is exposed when she looks up during her first performance of ■■■■■■■■ to find her passive partner staring blankly and looking as if he wanted to be somewhere else, not at all the reaction she had expected.

Frances is intensely and, at times, uncomfortably personal-peel away at the onion and she’s all needs and desires, and never mind the cost to the emotionally invested. Youth gives her a free pass, the sort of personality we look back on with a mixture of mild embarrassment and secret fondness. The conversations with friends are minefields of hidden motives and paranoia, the regularly pontificated political beliefs idle fashion statements. I’m tempted to label her amoral but in reality she has a clearly defined set of moral expectations that eschew commitment; emotional spontaneity is clearly preferenced over the conventional morality of the Irish herd.

Sally Rooney has denied the novel is autobiographical, but as poets she and Frances share one distaste, they both despise Yeats for the fascist he was, I liked that. Her style is clean and precise with nary a compound sentence in sight to strain the reader weaned on twitter. She reminds me of a milder version of Rachel Cusk without the polemics, but others have compared her to Salinger. She looks and sounds so Irish, even down to the recently expressed misery at having to bear the burden of the spotlight. I’ll be interested to see what gifted early success (She’s still in her mid- twenties) has on the career of such a precociously talented writer.

Meanwhile I look forward with relish to reading the follow up, ‘Normal People’.


#851

One book to go to finish King’s dark tower series - I have to admit I’ve struggled to follow it at times. Having read a lot of his other books, it’s interesting how he uses characters/events from his other books in the dark tower series.


#852

I thought it got progressively worse and for me the last one (7th?) was terrible. I wanted to stop when King wrote himself into the story but decided to finish it.


#853

Really? I’m the opposite - I think they’ve improved. Sadly I’ve already read spoilers about the dark tower, trying to find out more about what I’ve just read.


#854

New Matt Reilly book coming soon this month.
Get on to it!:grinning:


#855

Just finished Sally Rooney’s second novel ‘Normal People’ which, like her debut novel, is a quirky buddy romance of the twisted, perverted, farked up variety. Ostensibly Marianne and Connell have everything, but they hate themselves to varying degrees of intensity and only really love each other. But they’re not a fixed couple, it’s more a friends with benefits set up with one key problem, Connell is too much of a gentleman to give Marianne what she truly wants, and I’ll leave it at that.
The novel tracks their unsteady path through late adolescence and early adulthood and pulls no punches. There’s plenty of straight and kinky sex, which Rooney delivers with panache, and her dialogue is effortlessly brilliant, worth the price on its own.
She’s still in her 20s and I can’t wait for her next novel. A major talent on the rise.


#856

Onto George Pelecanos’s latest.

He’s been tied up for a few years with producing and writing TV shows such as The Wire, Treme, The Pacific and The Deuce.

He writes about the grittier side of Washington DC where the blacks and Greeks live, not the Government employees, politicians and diplomats…up near the Anacostia River. He’s written quite a few trilogies in the past, basing on seedy characters Dimitri Karras and Nick Stefanos. Seedy in their upbringing, but nowhere near as dishonest as the pollies and diplomats.


#857

Reading the new charlie parker mystery by john connolly - the woman in the woods.


#858

Tried a few early John Connolly books…couldn’t take to them.

Massive Michael Connelly fan though.


#859

The first charlie parker mystery by connolly was very good that it was always going to be difficult to top. I find that some of his books have all too similar plot though - isolated towns whose residents are part of generations old conspiracies committing crimes/murders but are only just been found out.

Never read michael connelly before might give him a try - what sort of genre does he write?


#860

His is the TV series Bosch.

20 odd police procedurals with Harry Bosch.
About 5 with the Lincoln Lawyer movie character, Mickey Haller
5 or so one-offs, best of which is The Poet and one of which, Blood Work, was filmed by Clint Eastwood with Jeff Daniels.

First Bosch is Black Echo.


#861

Are his books as well written as his TV?