Over on that excellent site The Violent World of Parker a letter about Don Westlake's soft core books contained the following: "Never read one of these. I don’t imagine Westlake would want me to, but I may have to track a couple of them down anyway at some point. "
Several years ago I found a soft-core novel (can't remember the title) that the dealer said positively absolutely was Westlake. I read it and found it to be a damned good piece of work. Set on a college campus in the late fifties the story involved a coed who got in trouble with the law. The writing was tight, perceptive and the social commentary spot on.
I e-mailed Don and told him how much I liked it. He said something like "I'll have to check that one out." And a few days later he emailed back and said that in all in all he was surprised the book had held up pretty well. He didn't want to see any of them back in print but he was able to acknowledge that at least a few of them were worthy examples of craft.
F*** YOU GOP
I send out political pieces culled from various sites to a list of people I know. They aren't just shots at the GOP; I get tired of Dems, too. One of the pieces I sent out brought this response from Fred Blosser and it speaks for me, too.
"The President needs to take a page out of the GOP's playbook. Remember
how the Bush paranoia apparatus hit the Code Red button to scare people
during the invasion of Iraq? How about a scenario in which 1 million
jobless Americans (shouldn't be hard to find that many) are mobilized in
a march on the Mall? A few press briefings in which the President
intones the dire (and all too true) prediction to the rest of us,
"Folks, without our jump start to the economy, this is your future," ...
and see what happens.
"Seems like the Dems have been bitch-slapped so many times by the Repubs
that they're paralyzed by Battered Spouse syndrome."