‘Sympathy Among Humans’ focuses around local cop Sara and her four investigations; runaway teen, illegal practicing doctor, liquor store holdups, and‘Sympathy Among Humans’ focuses around local cop Sara and her four investigations; runaway teen, illegal practicing doctor, liquor store holdups, and the murder of Shorty (bad guy from the first book). All added a little something to Sara’s character development with the doctor investigation proving particularly entertaining – each of these combined to maintain a solid pacing and easy to follow plot. I can’t help but think would’ve liked this book even more if I’d read the first in the series. While Compton does a good job of establishing back story, the minor character interactions would’ve meant so much more with the added history. 4 stars, a worthy reread. ...more
Hank Thompson is haunted by his failed attempts at being somebody. From horrific accident, to horrific accident, he's lost pieces of himself (figuratiHank Thompson is haunted by his failed attempts at being somebody. From horrific accident, to horrific accident, he's lost pieces of himself (figuratively and literally) as well as friends. His dreams are constant reminders of why his lives life out of a bottom of a whisky glass. That is, until reality catches up with him and the glass smashes into his face. A bar brawl leaves him a kidney light, remedying his unhealthy outlet and unearthing a whole new world of pain. With a busted leg, bleeding wound, ghosts of friends haunting his dream-scape, and busted feat, his job prospects low after the doc tells him he needs to give up the bouncing gig - life is pretty low. It's just the beginning.
With a corrupt cop named Roman, Russian gangsters and professional madmen all wanting a piece him, Hank slowly evolves into an accidental hardman handing out beatings like they're cheap advice. Who knew looking after a cat would cause so much trouble?
'Caught Stealing' is a hard hitting New York bar room brawl of a novel. From it's blood stained opening, murderous intense plotting to bare knuckle ending, the first installment in the Hank Thompson trilogy is a homage to pulp noir.
This was a re-read for me in light of the recent news of it being adapted to he big screen. Having read it for a second time, I cant wait to see how it turns out. Alec Baldwin has been cast as Roman, and during 'Caught Steeling' I thought his look went well with the hard, greedy and vicious cop. Patrick Wilson will play Hank and I think he has the right look. Wilson very similar to how I pictured Hank so this works well for me. News on the movie can be found here: http://www.wordandfilm.com/2012/09/al...
Much like the first time I read 'Caught Stealng', the star rating remains at a solid 4.
SIX BAD THINGS, the second book in the Hank Thompson trilogy echoes Elmore Leonard’s dialogue with Charlie Huston’s trademark dark humour, action packSIX BAD THINGS, the second book in the Hank Thompson trilogy echoes Elmore Leonard’s dialogue with Charlie Huston’s trademark dark humour, action packed violence and comedic-like killer routine. Following on from the events of CAUGHT STEALING, Hank finds himself living a life of leisure on an off-the-grid beach haven surrounded by colourful characters who know just enough to buy his cover as a wealthy American taking time out from his high pressure, fast living lifestyle. Before long, the Russian Mafia learns of his whereabouts and Hank is once again transformed from average Joe to accidental murderer.
Much like CAUGHT STEALING, SIX BAD THINGS has a lot of descriptive violence. The scenes Huston depicts aren’t designed for the squeamish, after all it’s called noir for a reason – this stuff is supposed to be bleak and dangerous. Somehow Hank managers to escape the clutches of the Russian Mafia, police, crazed Mexicans, and strung out strippers as he attempts to track down his 4 million dollar bounty held safe by a friend in New York recently located to Vegas while promising pay offs to keep his mother and father free from harm.
SIX BAD THINGS is pretty action heavy. Hank is put through the grinder more times than I care to count. However, his resilience and survival instinct are commodities which bleed nicely into A DANGEROUS MAN, the last book in the trilogy while opening up some new job prospects along the way. Huston manages to make Hank endearing and dangerous at the same time. Despite often harming people in very graphic and seemingly painful ways, you cant help but feel him. Continuing on from the ‘wrong man’ theme of CAUGHT STEALING, Huston maintains a semblance and Hanks former self while further developing him into the character he’s ultimately destined to be in A DANGEROUS MAN.
I liked SIX BAD THINGS much better the second time. Having read it initially in June 2008 and giving it 3.5 stars, the second read was easily it 5 stars. The back of the book compares Huston to Crumley and co. SIX BAD THINGS is the reason why.