Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Coffee & Cigarettes: Pulp-Noir-Short Stories, by Eric Leckey (author), Bill Nevitt (narrator)

Eric Leckey, May 2019

This is, as the subtitle suggests, a collection of short stories recalling the tone, style, and subject matter of film noir and the pulp hardboiled detective and crime fiction that it grew out of it.

These stories are competent and serviceable in their way, set in the same era and capturing the tone and attitude perhaps a little too well. The times, social setting, and social mores of the noir era are what one would expect of the stories and characters, but there's no apparent awareness that the readers, a century later, might not. That might be a deliberate choice. I think it's a weakness; there could have been greater depth to the stories if the distance between readers and characters were in some way acknowledged.

Yet if it's a deliberate choice, it is achieved very effectively, and others' tastes will differ. The narrator does a good job of it, as always reading with a clear, strong, and expressive voice.

I can't quite say recommended, but there's certainly an audience for these noir stories true to the era.

I received a free copy of this audiobook from the narrator, and am reviewing it voluntarily.

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