Monday, August 11, 2008

George Pelecanos interview

I'm deep in conversation with George Pelecanos, speaking from his home in Silver Spring, Maryland, when I ask if he minds being labelled a crime writer. There's a pregnant pause. Dogs start barking, then howling. Have I asked the wrong question?
He excuses himself, pacifies the pooches and moves to another room before answering. "It's fine," he assures me with a deep southern drawl. But he adds a caveat: "I'm not a mystery writer – that is a misnomer. The formula of the mystery novel is that a murder is committed in the first chapter then solved in the last chapter, and the world is set back upright again. That's meant to comfort the reader. I've even heard crime writers say that they're doing some kind of public service by making people feel good about the world. I just don't agree with that. When someone's murdered, it forever haunts the family and the community. It ripples out."

Read more at the Source

Book Choice: The Big Blowdown

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