Sunday, February 19, 2012
HELL AT THE BREECH is a story of greed and violence in a section of turn-of-the-century Alabama, which is reminiscent of the wild west. The writing carried me along; whenever the author focused on the protagonist, Sheriff Waite, the book came alive. There is an element of the mystical in one character, a midwife, who has second sight. There are the innocents who do casually evil things. There is a string of false assumptions that carry the characters into deadly actions in the novel as in real life. Justice comes in the form of a crazed mob killing innocents as well as the guilty and from the sheriff who is capable of relentless brutality. It was a well-written, at times powerful book, but one reading of this author is enough.
Saturday, February 4, 2012
My notes from March 15, 2004: MYSTIC RIVER by Dennis Lehane. After seeing the film, I read the book—and couldn’t put it down. I tried reading a Lehane detective novel before picking up Mystic River and I thought it was awful. This was an instance of the film improving the book since I could see each character from the movie as I read. This was a well-written novel of family, betrayal, planned violence, misassumptions (life is so filled with them), random violence, and the vagaries of life.