Friday, August 9, 2013

Recent Reads: Montreal Chicago Trigger Blood

In 1944, Raymond Chandler penned an essay called “The Simple Art of Murder” in which he outlined the hallmarks of a hard-boiled detective/private investigator.  Part of his definition included the following:

Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself mean, who is neither tarnished nor afraid.  … He must be a complete man and a common man, yet an unusual man.  He must be …a man of honor.  He is neither a eunuch nor a satyr.  I think he might seduce a duchess, and I’m quite certain he would not spoil a virgin.  If he is a man of honor in one thing, he’s that in all things.  He is a relatively poor man, or he would not be a detective at all.  He is a common man or he could not go among common people.  He has a sense of character or he would not know his job.  He will take no man’s money dishonestly and no man’s insolence without due and dispassionate revenge.  He is a lonely man, and his pride 
is that you will treat him as a proud man or be very sorry you ever saw him.  

If Raymond Chandler were around today, and wanted to define the hard-boiled sleuth, rather than writing an essay, he could instead confidently point to any of the four books depicted below.  I read them all within the last month and just loved them!  Ray Dudgeon (Chercover) and Jonah Geller (Shrier) deftly navigate those mean streets.  Chercover and Shrier have absolutely nailed it.

No comments:

Post a Comment