Top positive review
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fuse lit for a devestating quartet
on 31 January 2004
I like my crime black as night and completely fearless. 1974 delivers not only great crime, just the way I like it, but great literature. Peace has redefined the crime novel.( I've heard this said many times as a crime afficianado, but in this case it really is true) Generally in crime novels bad things happen in an (essentially) good place. Someone then sets out to make things right. In 1974, the whole world (Yorkshire) is bad and NOTHING can set it right. The truth has to be squeezed out (and I don't use this cliche lightly) like blood from a stone. In Peace's world, the facts are profoundly disturbing and the emotions surrounding them are worse. Morality is virtually non-existent and what there is brings about only brutal survival. This is indeed a Godless universe, and visiting it through these pages truly gives a glimpse of hell. Peace has to be admired for his courage and his unflinching gaze into the abyss. It is troubling to read, what was it like to WRITE. Just to see the author's name - PEACE - after having read this book reminds you how far from peace this time and place are (were).
1974 is the first book of the red riding quartet (1974,1977,1980,1983) and cannot truly be appreciated (good as it is) without finishing the quartet. While a liitle rougher, and not quite as tight as the following three books, 1974 has a raw urgency and ends(?) with a lot of unanswered questions. Questions that are answered, or rather confronted and dissected in the following three books. 1974 lights the fuse,and then the bombs start falling. Woe to the reader with a weak constitution. Once read, these books will NEVER be forgotten