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Customer Review

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Pale shadow of former glory... one eye on the movie sequel rights?!, 30 Jun 2011
This review is from: Moonlight Mile (Paperback)
I sped through this greedily like I have most of Dennis Lehane's Kenzie and Gennaro novels. I can't help myself. I have such a good time in their company. It's always a pleasure. And it was a pleasure this time too. I mean, Lehane has proved over and over again that he can write. That he can build believable characters (and not-so-believable, but unequivocally loveable characters like Bubba!) That he can paint portraits of Boston that manage to get under the skin of the city. I was thoroughly entertained by Moonlight Mile. And I was willing to go with the premise and was intrigued to see where the case in question would end up. Unfortunately, by the end of the book, I felt somewhat cheated. I could handle the world-weariness of the PI husband-and-wife team. I could handle their domesticity. I was even almost convinced by the imagining of Amanda McCready in her steel-souled, wise-before-her-time early adulthood. What I could not handle was the sheer preposterousness of so much of the plot. I could not handle the half-baked quality of most of the characters - both the major players and the incidental ones. I was disappointed with the sometimes lacklustre dialogue (dialogue, above all, was Lehane's forte in his previous novels in the series.) Everything seemed so cobbled-together. The germ of a good idea was here. Maybe, after the harrowing and deeply moral and deeply intelligent Gone, Baby, Gone I expected far too much in this sequel to that fantastic novel. But Moonlight Mile feels so lightweight in comparison. Farcical, even. Everything is done and dusted at such hyperspeed that the more profound themes of the novel are never given the chance to mature. My suspicion is that there was a commercial imperative to come up with a sequel to Gone, Baby, Gone so that it could be adapted into a film as soon as possible. I will be interested to see how the inevitable film of this book turns out. (Especially if the supremely watchable Casey Affleck again takes on the role of Patrick.) It's just a pity that Lehane has written what, to me, is easily the least impressive novel of his career so far.
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