Thursday, January 22, 2009

Late additions to the best of 2008

Some books I've left unintentionally out from my best of 2008 list or books that appeared in 2008, but which I managed to read only in 2009:

Yasmina Khadra: Attentaatti (in English as The Attack), originally 2006, translated in Finnish in 2008: very gripping tale of a successful Arab doctor living and practicing in Israel: his life goes in turmoil, when his beautiful wife makes a suicide bomb attack in a Jerusalem café

Denis Johnson: Jesus' Son (originally in 1992, translated in Finnish just last year, and I think the book came out only in December): a combination between Raymond Carver and William S. Burroughs, short meaningless stories about drug addicts in the early 1970's America trying to live their lives with no much success, hardboiled style merged with hallucinatory similes, Bukowski without Bukowski's machismo

Paul Gravett (ed.): The Mammoth Book of the Best Crime Comics: huge package of mostly hardboiled and noir comics from the 1930's on to this day, from Dashiell Hammett's and Alex Raymond's X-9 to Alex Toth's and Bernie Krigstein's stylish noir and to Neil Gaiman's and Oscar Zarate's very, very chilling story about one of the wealthiest man in the world and his liking for beautiful boys, but all in all, lots and lots of great stuff, the book you don't want to be without (should probably write a longer piece on this, but I don't think I'll manage, since I've been sick and am behind my work and still don't feel like starting today) - but let me add since this stuff'll interest many people reading this blog: included are also Mickey Spillane's one and only Mike Lancer story and a long newspaper story featuring Mike Hammer (which wasn't bad, interesting that Hammer was drawn to look exactly like Mickey Spillane himself)

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