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4.0 out of 5 stars There's more than one way to skin a cat
After a tour of duty in Afghanistan, a former soldier and Pulitzer Prize nominee, Cason Statler, goes back to his home town in Camp Rapture, Texas, in the hope of landing a job reporting on the local newspaper, and patching things up with his ex.
He lands the job no problem, after all he's a good reporter. But with the nightmares of his experiences in the Middle East...
Published 3 months ago by Arch Stanton

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3.0 out of 5 stars For a Lansdale this is dissapointing
I was looking forward to this being a massive fan of Big Joe, but i found it a rather dissapointing and dare i say it dreary read.
The plot isn't up to much and when we do find out the killers motives its something of a big so what.
Characters are also pretty thin, usually a Lansdale speciality. The main character is pretty dull, but fortunately Booger is a...
Published on 3 Oct. 2011 by GeneralCromwell


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4.0 out of 5 stars There's more than one way to skin a cat, 4 Dec. 2014
By 
Arch Stanton (Cornwall, England.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Leather Maiden (Hardcover)
After a tour of duty in Afghanistan, a former soldier and Pulitzer Prize nominee, Cason Statler, goes back to his home town in Camp Rapture, Texas, in the hope of landing a job reporting on the local newspaper, and patching things up with his ex.
He lands the job no problem, after all he's a good reporter. But with the nightmares of his experiences in the Middle East still haunting his thoughts, not to mention the occasional bout of 'innocent' drunk stalking, his ex~girlfriend is less easily convinced..
So to take his mind off her and more importantly keep from getting a restraining order slapped on himself, Cason decides to delve into the more interesting archives of his predecessors work files, with one crime case in particular capturing his attention. A case whereby a girl just vanished..
But as Cason continues to scratch the surface, he soon finds out that although his home town might not be as exciting as Afghanistan, it can be just as deadly, with just as many nightmares...

This is another decent southern~noir/comedy thriller from Joe R Lansdale. As usual we get a laid back, 'rocking chair on a porch' style tale, that's punctuated by colourful characters, often vulgar yet witty dialogue and a smattering of dark, visceral action.
This one reminded me a little of Twin Peaks, but with some Edgar Allan Poe thrown in for good measure...
The story not unleashing too much of Statler's potentially unhinged veteran yet, but certainly giving the reader a feeling that Statler might grow into his own dark beast in further stories to come.. Some of his other characters in 'Leather Maiden' like, Booger ~ a rambunctious, head~case war buddy of Statler's who decides to 'help' out; and Timpson ~ his cantankerous, female boss and editor, characters who're already fully fleshed out and undoubtedly happy to steal the show.

I suppose one could argue that the books biggest let down is that it's maybe slightly over long, even at only 287 pages, and that the ending is not only a little neat and tidy, but also quite easy to work out. But that's maybe being a little harsh on a book that's trying to introduce us to a new series of characters.
Either way, Leather Maiden is another entertaining effort that is sure to please existing fans of Lansdale's and convert a few new ones I'm sure..

4/5
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4.0 out of 5 stars noir with a comic twist, 1 Aug. 2012
By 
Rob Kitchin - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Leather Maiden (Hardcover)
Joe Lansdale has long been one of my favourite authors and Leather Maiden confirms why. His stories are earthy, fecund, and often dark, exploring the underbelly of society. Delivered in a back-porch storytelling style, he expertly immerses the reader in East Texan landscape and its peoples. There's no better person at writing noir with a comic twist. He's particularly good at portraying colourful characters that teeter on the edge of normality, yet making them seem everyday rather than caricature. And the dialogue, as per usual, is to die for: the conversations crackle off the page (the verbal battles between Cason and his editor are particularly entertaining). The pacing is spot-on and the plotting well conceived, although it gets a little pedestrian after the halfway point and the ending was a little telegraphed and flat. Whilst not quite as strong as some of his other works (the bar is set damn high), this is nevertheless superior stuff.
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3.0 out of 5 stars For a Lansdale this is dissapointing, 3 Oct. 2011
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This review is from: Leather Maiden (Hardcover)
I was looking forward to this being a massive fan of Big Joe, but i found it a rather dissapointing and dare i say it dreary read.
The plot isn't up to much and when we do find out the killers motives its something of a big so what.
Characters are also pretty thin, usually a Lansdale speciality. The main character is pretty dull, but fortunately Booger is a typically good Lansdale creation.
Not sure whats happened to Joe's writing recently as i was dissapointed with Lost Echos, Vanilla Ride and now this one.
I hope Lansdale can raise his game again, because at the moment it seems he's creativity has hit a brick wall.
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Leather Maiden (Vintage Classics)
Leather Maiden (Vintage Classics) by Joe R. Lansdale (Paperback - 18 Aug. 2009)
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