June 27, 2012 |
You can take Walter Mosley out of Los Angeles - in fact, Mosley did so himself, moving to New York decades ago - but you can't take L.A. out of Walter Mosley. The master of several genres keeps the city present, from his Easy Rawlins detective novels set in black postwar Los Angeles to the Greek-myths-in-South-Central elements in one of the two novellas in his latest volume. Mosley appeared to wrap it up with Rawlins in "Blonde Faith" in 2007, but five years later, he's found more for his most famous detective to do, just as Mosley has for himself.
March 18, 2011 |
Walter Mosley's latest, "When the Thrill Is Gone," is the third installment (after "The Long Fall" and "Known to Evil") in the series featuring Leonid McGill, a tough, philosophic African American private detective who plies his perilous trade in today's New York City. The book is as complex and thoughtful as its narrator-hero and is also smartly paced, well plotted and elegantly written. And yet, when compared to the author's initial, career-igniting novels about Easy Rawlins, it seems to lack a key ingredient: originality.
December 19, 2010 |
Walter Mosley, 58, the prolific L.A.-born, Brooklyn-based crime novelist, has a lot to say about pop culture ? but it isn't about books. His latest is "The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey. " What were your favorite books this year? That should be an easy question, although I didn't read a whole bunch of new books this year. I was reading "V. " by [ Thomas] Pynchon and old Roger Zelazny, books that I had read before. . ? My problem is ? the industry publishes 150,000 books a year, and you get overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of it. Are there any new writers you're watching?
December 5, 2010
Amy Clampitt Selected Poems Edited by Mary Jo Salter Alfred A. Knopf, $19.95 This collection serves as a kind of memorial to the gifted poet, who died in 1994. The Brave A Novel Nicholas Evans Little, Brown, $26.99 A documentary filmmaker with a complicated childhood must confront his past to deal with his estranged son, accused of committing atrocities while serving in Iraq. Canti Poems Giacomo Leopardi Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $35 This thoroughly modern 19th century Italian's lyric poetry about the self and loneliness are given new freshness in this translation by Jonathan Galassi.
March 30, 2010
The Movie That Inspired Me David Fincher, celebrated director of "Fight Club" and "Zodiac," presents George Roy Hill's William Goldman-scripted "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" in this month's installment of the UCLA Film and Television Archive series. Post-screening, Fincher and series host Curtis Hanson will discuss the lighthearted 1969 chronicle of the notorious leaders of the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang. Billy Wilder Theatre, 10899 Wilshire Blvd. 7:30 p.m. $9. (310) 206-3456. cinema.
March 21, 2010 |
Known to Evil A Novel Walter Mosley Riverhead: 326 pp., $25.95 Walter Mosley's last novel, "The Long Fall," was the detective fiction equivalent of a system reboot, a riff on the author's favorite brand of story. Instead of Los Angeles, we have New York; instead of the past, there is only the present (or, at least, the 2008 variety of present). Instead of Ezekiel "Easy" Rawlins stumbling through tumultuous social change with lethal sidekicks and an unorthodox family, meet Leonid Trotter McGill, "a survivor from the train wreck of the modern world" who stumbles through his own prolonged internal crises backed by a lethal sidekick and a most dysfunctional family.