4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
A Gallic Gem,
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This review is from: How's the Pain? (Kindle Edition)
I romped through this comically trenchant novella as if I were devouring a bowl of French onion soup, impossible not to woof it down in one go. It refuses to be genre defined but pays homage to the noir origins of American hardboiled fiction of the 1930s and 1940s. One can hear the influence of Raymond Chandler in the beautiful pared down prose, but the cultural references are decidedly Gallic. Emerging from a simple straightforward narrative, the main protagonists interlock against a background of supermarkets, service stations and campsites. Mostly, we see the story through the ironic gaze of Simon, the washed up assassin, and with it come instances of stark violence that not only surprise but also delight with lashes of mordant wit. The surreal tendency makes this a literary work rather than a plot driven crime story, but with diamond bright prose allied to a superb translation, it leaves one in no doubt that this is a French gem par excellence.