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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully tough, poignant and topical Los Angeles thriller, 9 Jun 2001
By A Customer
The publicist for Boston Teran's NEVER COUNT OUT THE DEAD calls it "a cross between 'Chinatown' and 'Macbeth,'" and for once the hyperbole is right on the money. Just as the theft of water from the Owens Valley provided the perfect real-life backdrop for Robert Towne's classic filmscript, so the equally greedy plans to build Belmont High School on a particulary toxic patch of Los Angeles real estate gives Teran's story a jolt of vile verisimilitude. And Dee Storey, a once-lovely woman whose brains and beauty have been frazzled down to grotesque caricatures by speed and Southern Comfort, is the ideal Lady Macbeth -- a creature so full of dangerous venom that she threatens to explode at any moment. As he did in his spectacular debut mystery, "God Is A Bullet," the reclusive (and pseudonymous) Teran manages to create a fistful of memorable characters while telling a terrific story in a smart, yeasty, poetic, totally original voice. "To Terry, William has always resembled this androgenous George Armstrong Custer," he says of a major character, an investigative journalist who calls himself Landshark. "Too intense for his own flesh. Driven hard by sad, desperate needs that might bring about his own destruction. And angry to a point he doesn't recognize." It's Landshark who literally brings back from the dead John Victor Sully, a police officer from Baker ("one of those atrocious desert landmarks dry-docked on the northern border of the Mojave") who 11 years before was shot and buried by Dee Storey and her 13-year-old daughter, Shay, as part of a complicated coverup plot involving Belmont. Shay is another stunning creation, a young woman attached to her increasingly-wretched mother by bonds of hate as strong as any love. And even the lesser characters ("Crocker looks like a collection of side effects") come bouncing onto the scene fully-blown, thanks to the heart and brain of a writer who has quickly blasted a place for himself in the rockface of the genre.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Re-hash of God is a bullet., 7 April 2006
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Quite brilliant but the central charachters are a bit of a re-hash of those in 'God is a Bullet'. Also the same kind of geography - which I suppose is Boston Teran's neck of the woods and works for him. No surprises at the end but still one of those novels you don't want to end.
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Never Count Out the Dead
Never Count Out the Dead by Boston Teran (Paperback - 7 Feb 2003)
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