Swierczynski, Duane. Fun and Games.

NY: Mulholland Books, 2011.

This is the first volume in the author’s rather off-the-wall “Charlie Hardie” trilogy, and it’s a doozy. Charlie, now around forty, was never actually a cop but he used to work with the Philadelphia PD on legally questionable crime-fighting assignments. Then everything blew up (almost literally) and his partner (together with his wife and kids) was massacred by a drug gang and Charlie’s own wife and son are in Witness Protection while Charlie himself scratches out a living around the country as a house-sitter.

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Published in: on 18 June 2017 at 10:08 am  Leave a Comment  
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Leonard, Elmore. Get Shorty.

NY: Delacorte, 1990.

Leonard is justifiably highly regarded as the author of a couple of dozen generally first-rate crime novels, and they’re all a lot of fun (sometimes viciously so), but this relatively light-hearted caper is still arguably his best. There’s a lot of Damon Runyon in it, in fact.

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Published in: on 24 March 2014 at 5:40 am  Leave a Comment  
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Fraser, George MacDonald. The Hollywood History of the World, from One Million B.C. to Apocalypse Now.

NY: Morrow, 1988.

Any book which undertakes to argue the author’s choice of the best or worst of anything has a good shot at being a lot of fun — and an even better shot when the author is a very knowledgeable, highly opinionated, and notably talented wordsmith. Fraser is best known for his “Flashman” comic-historical novels — highly regarded for their detailed accuracy — but he was also an experienced and professional playwright and screenplay writer. And in this volume he considers how history has been treated in the (mostly) English-language films of Hollywood and Britain.

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Published in: on 17 May 2011 at 5:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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