Saturday, August 26, 2006
Elmore Leonard - The Switch
It must be pretty tough sometimes when you're writing in an over-subscribed arena like crime fiction, to come up with an original story. But Elmore Leonard's 1978 novel feels like it's just that - a non-hackneyed story.
At the centre of the plot is a somewhat bungled and amateurish kidnap of the wife of a corrupt housing developer in Detroit. The criminal two-some who set-up the kidnapped seem totally unprepared - and together with a lunatic neo-Nazi, proceed to make a hash of every stage of this major crime.
But it's the actions of the victims husband that makes the story - his response and the consequences are what turns the tale on it's head.
If I have one criticism - the blurb on the back of my copy gives the entire story away. Why do publishers feel the need to do this? Saying that though, this Phoenix re-print is a nice modern edition, with great artwork. Far better than the cliched detective novel covers you normally get on Leonard's work!