four and one-half stars out of fiveA Few Thoughts on Morals and Dave Robicheaux
In all likelihood I will never read a James Lee Burke book and give it less than three stars and it’s more likely to give it four or five stars.
With that said, the vast number of characters in Burke’s books seems to get longer and longer with creative names which I simply cannot remember. Remember them for longer than one page anyhow.
Usually the last quarter of the book, people are in a frenzy getting rid of the guy sitting next to them who has intimate knowledge of all the skeletons in the closet; he’s the one who is bumped off. So for a few pages every 50 or so read, there’s person flying out the window landing on a fire hydrant (head first, of course); a fellow shot running out the back door of a whorehouse and a pimp walking down the street who is neatly sliced with a shiv.
By the end, when it may be mentioned that Matisis Yelloman was dead, I’m trying to recall when and how he died. Who was he, I’m asking myself; how, when did HE die?
I found that this particular book was a few shades different than previous books in that not all was resolved at the end which is fine with me since I don’t need a bow neatly tied at the end of story or book.
However, moral questions were raised; what is our obligation to our fellow man? Is vengeance/retribution moral and just (and legal?) These questions have been raised and discussed for thousands of years and once again in this book. (Let it be known that moral questions are usually raised in Burke’s books, so this is not unusual.)
Burke’s writing is as colorful as always with descriptions of southern Louisiana, as usual, so much so that Burke takes you there mentally.
Well on my way in continuing the Dave Robicheaux series with this being #10. Coming up next is Purple Cane Road. Can't wait but think I might take notes on the names. An Aside - Fictional TV Series Debuts
I saw an interview last night with Kevin Spacey who stars in the new series, “House of Cards.” It’s a series where Spacey (who’s the best, in my opinion) “stars in the drama as Representative Frank Underwood, a silkily ambitious and amoral politician who, after being passed over for Secretary of State, sets in motion a plan to take down the new president he helped get elected.” This is certainly payback in the political arena. (Since the series premiers in the next few days, the script and the series was recorded long before any recent political event.) An Aside About US90
I was thinking when reading one of the many descriptions that devoted readers of Robicheaux probably who happen to be in the area, would take a nearby US90 exit and simply drive a narrow paved (maybe) road just looking around the area. Perhaps looking lost, a local might ask “can I help you find something?” and the driver (and captive family who may know little of Dave Robicheaux) would reply, “no, just looking around” and the local responding,” looking for Dave Robicheaux’s fish camp?” The reply could be “yes, as a matter of fact.”
The reason I mention this is because it occurred to me to do just that knowing full well there is no fish camp...not one that belongs to Dave.
Thinking of US 90, it’s an interesting road, 1633 miles from Jacksonville, FL to Van Horn, TX passing through small towns, ramshackle old motels and gas stations since it was once well traveled going east to west.
My favorite part of US 90 is in the Florida panhandle where it skirts the Gulf. It’s a beautiful, remote area. There should be signs reading “Drive carefully – ‘coon and ‘dilla crossing.” My kind of area.