The Wheelman by Duane Swierczynski
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
There is one perfect reason why I consider Agatha Christie as one of my favourite authors, because she was not pretentious and knew that what she wrote was crime fiction with the sole purpose of entertainment. Her books were not commentaries on racism, on human psychology or something
“much deeper than just a crime novel”. Then smartass writers started criticising Christie and started writing Crime fiction with a “Broader Perspective”, and managed to make the crime, twist and solution take a back seat to things like human psychology, atmosphere and every other stuff which made no contribution to the plot, pace or entertainment in any way whatsoever.
Duane S scores here, and scores a perfect 10. This book, The Wheelman, just as the name suggest is a pure crime fiction and nothing more. Just like a wheelman, whose sole aim is to get the men out into safety, Duane S made sure that this book’s main aim is to satisfy the reader, and present him with a purest form of crime fiction.
He was successful. He offered no commentary as to how a man could commit crime, what made him do it. No opinion and sympathies as to how human kind is getting scarier day by day. Or how corrupt the law has become. He merely states that humans can be dangerous, some of them rob banks and kill people, and the city of Philly has a darker side and there are corrupt police officers. To these facts he adds a huge….huge dollop of twist, right up to the last page. And adds a liberal sprinkling of pace and serves the reader with a work of crime fiction which deals with a crime, its outcome and the twists in between. And nothing more.
So, in my opinion if Duane S is the future of Crime writing, then the future is pretty safe. If not there is a twist in the future in the same way he twisted us readers in his book.
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