Sunday, October 27, 2013

The First Quarry (Max Allan Collins, 2008)

Max Allan Collins takes us back to the early 70s on a ride with his anti-hero's debut assignment. Quarry is dispatched to some small college town in Iowa where he's supposed to "take out" some asshole professor/writer working on a "non-fiction" book on Chicago's mobster. Two women are involved and gang war over the drug turf is taking place so we know there will be plenty of sex and violence.

And since we are reading Quarry book, we know it will be fun.

It moves forward pretty rapidly, at times maybe even too fast as character don't have time to fully evolve and breathe. Collins either drops them altogether (cute blonde at the very beginning) or Quarry simply kills them. There's this likable private detective Charlie who brings few possibilities of mystery entanglement but he too almost immediately ends up with additional hole in his head and storytelling goes back to linear mode. Which is cool, Quarry's novel are by their definition character driven, sometimes (like in this one) it's just too bad that the only character that drives them is Quarry and others are somehow neglected.

But, again, it's fun. Especially after reading initial few chapters and getting into the mood and into our protagonist's sense of humor. He's simply cool guy and I'll give his first adventure an extra half point on account how effectively he managed to finish this whole affair without "leaving any loose ends". Nice work indeed.




Iowa City

Body count:8

Dorothy "Dorrie" Byron, asshole professor's abandoned wife and Annette Girard, artistic and slightly confused daughter of the mobster Lou Girardelli. Quarry fucks them both. Twice.

Blackouts: /

Quarry's first assignment.

Excellent one, done by Ken Laager. Liked its dark and sexy feel and it's also very accurate - it depicts a scene from the page 118. One small remark though - Quarry seems to be a bit lost in thoughts and uninterested but in the book he's actually horny as hell.

Cool lines:  
"I'm nothing to you but your 'girl' - I'm not a serious writer doing serious work!"
I wondered if a serious writer would use the word 'serious' twice in the same sentence.

She said, "I'm not in love with Professor Byron or anything. We're just good friends."
I could use a good friend who looked like her who would blow me.

[Before killing a guy]  He'd gone to the store. He had to eat, didn't he? Well, actually, he didn't, but he didn't know that.

"Do I look like I was born the fuck yesterday?"
For all the gunk on his hair, he might have been born the fuck a few seconds ago.[The Coolest!]

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