sábado, fevereiro 01, 2014

"The Gods of Guilt" by Michael Connelly

The Gods of Guilt - Michael ConnellyMusings on the choosing of what books to take to a desert island


Everytime I'm hard-pressed to choose my proverbial books to take to a desert island, it always comes to mind Simon Cowell (I forgot in what circumstances), when told he was being given the Bible and Shakespeare, saying "You mean to READ?"

Yes, to READ!

Setting aside the usual escape and survival books (eg, " How to Escape From a Desert Island", "How To Build Boats Using Only Sand, Coconuts and Seaweed", "Coconuts, shrimp and seaweed: 101 Easy Ways To Find Alternatives to Eating Each Other Like Animals", "Techniques For Self Diagnosing Isolation Psychosis"), I'd choose the entire Connelly's body of work, as well as P. D. James' (allow me to choose series. After all I'm stuck on a desert island with little chance of reprieve...). Magically, the weight of several hardbacks and paperbacks didn’t cause me to sink straight to the bottom, and because the Creatures of the Depth are completely repelled by book lions like myself, whose vitamin D-deficient bodes and Samsung-Galaxy Tab-calloused hands reek not of blood but of public library mold.

Let's get back to our issue at hand. The latest Connelly's (not to be confused with the "John" of the same surname).

Connelly proves, once more, that he’s a master at plot creation. It’s structured solidly upon one character’s head (Haller’s). No fake suspense created by hopping into the head of the bad guy was needed here. When Haller gets into the courtroom, the book flares up with plot twists and Haller shines as character, even as he is haunted himself by the Gods of Guilt.
By deciding that the “Lincoln Lawyer” movie had happened in his book world, Connelly broke the fourth wall, but I liked it because it felt true to his Los Angeles, and he's to live with his story having been on the big screen and that there are real consequences to that. Connelly has a clinical eye for revealing the elaborateness of police procedure and the insidious politics of life within the police, not to mention his skills in laying bare the tricks of the courtroom trade.

NB1: To the Desert Island, and after I'd gotten the fire going, I'd also take the DaVinci Code so I could burn it...

NB2: My 10-Desert-Island-book-stack (well 11 really...) in no particular order (I reserve the right to change it at a later date...):

1. P.D. James (any book will do);

2. Michael Connelly (any book will do);

3. "Die Gedichte von Bertolt Brecht in einem Band" by Bertold Brecht (I'll post a review one of these days. What Brecht does with language is incredible. If you love Brecht's poetry as I do, this is the definite version for you);

4. Christopher Priest ("The Prestige", "The Glamour" or "The Adjacent");

5. "Gedichte" by Paul Celan

6. "Die Sonette an Orpheus" by Rainer Maria Rilke

7. "Duineser Elegien" by Rainer Maria Rilke

8. "Sämtliche Werke" by Friedrich Hördelin

9. "Die Erzählungen" by Frank Kafka (I've got this particular edition at home still to be read)

10. "The Stand" by Stephen King

11. "The Company" by Stephen Littell

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