Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Books read in 2013: No. 58 -- Candyland

by Evan Hunter and Ed McBain

Started: Dec. 23
Finished: Dec. 31

Notes: For those who don't know, though there are two authors listed for this novel, they are actually one and the same person. "Ed McBain" was a pen name for author Evan Hunter, who was actually born under the name Salvatore Albert Lambino but legally changed his name in 1952. I've long been a fan of this author's work as McBain, though I've not stepped into his Evan Hunter works. Here I get that chance in a single book written by both men ... er, both characters ... uh, hell, well, they're written by the same guy but in different styles. Make sense? Maybe you have to be a writer to understand. Anyway, the first part of the novel is by Hunter and focuses upon a successful architect who lands himself in some hot water while traveling and searching for female companionship; the McBain portion of the novel apparently is about three detectives covering the case of a murdered prostitute, a woman who had some kind of link with the architect.

Mini review: As a reader, I was not awed by this one. The first half of the book, the Hunter half, was a bit slow for my taste. The second half, McBain's section, heated things up quite a bit, but as is always the case, I feel a little let down when reading McBain but not reading his 87th Precinct novels. As a writer, I was quite intrigued by the dichotomy between the two styles of writing, the first half being much more personal (which stings a bit as the protagonist is somewhat sleazy) and the second half which is fast-paced police detective work. The ending was a complete surprise to me, I can happily say.

1 comment:

Charles Gramlich said...

Sounds like it would be interesting just for the style stuff. Not for a lot else.