Robert's Reviews > Pity Him Afterwards

Pity Him Afterwards by Donald E. Westlake
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Oct 14, 2013

bookshelves: crime-detective
Read from April 12 to May 11, 2012

This book didn't really work for me, though I can imagine that others might not feel the same way. A multiple murderer has escaped from a "secure" psychiatric facility. His continued psychological problems lead to further killings...


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Reading Progress

04/14/2012 page 16
9.0% "Struggling to get in to this."
04/26/2012 page 39
21.0% "I liked it more when it switched from the psycho's point of view to that of an inexperienced actor...but it switches back again..."
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Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Kelly H. (Maybedog) Sounds awful.

message 2: by Robert (new) - added it

Robert I think it's a failed experiment, or perhaps multiple experiments, most of which didn't work. The Police Chief was potentially really interesting, but didn't get enough "air time."

I also think others might not necessarily have the same problem with the killer's perspective. I find it difficult to pin down exactly why I didn't like it.

Kelly H. (Maybedog) I've had that problem too. A couple of days ago I finished a book that looks like my thing when I broke it down but something about it just didn't work for me when looked at as a whole. And I can't say what that is.

message 4: by Robert (new) - added it

Robert When I say I find it difficult to pin down why I didn't like it, I'm referring specifically to the killer's perspective.

I suspect that the narrower the genre the harder it is to be innovative and successful at the same time. If you try a heap of non-standard approaches in one such novel it is much more likely than not that the end-product will turn out flawed. I don't think people should refrain from all experimentation, though: we wouldn't have hard-boiled detective fiction, for instance, if nobody ever tried anything but the Victorian amateur sleuth, for example.

Kelly H. (Maybedog) I probably should pay more attention when I read posts. :)

It does make complete sense that the narrower a field the harder it is to do something different. It is also affected by the sheer numbers of readers and authors now. Did I interpret that one right? I have a migraine do I'm down about 20 IQ points.

message 6: by Robert (new) - added it

Robert well, I think my original comment about what I didn't like was ambiguously phrased...

I guess the issue of the number of books published applies across the board, too; it's hard to write a novel that's actually novel,regardless of genre, these days! but proportionately harder, the narrower the genre.

I hope the migraine passes quickly.

Kelly H. (Maybedog) It's a mild migraine. They vary. I don't even feel that nauseated. If I can type its not the bad kind. This kind will pass in a couple if hours. No big deal. People think that all migraines are excruciating and I do have plenty that are but I have a lot of small ones. They have the same symptoms, on one side of the head, nausea, light and sound sensitivity, dizziness, sometimes aura, and a significant drop in intelligence. :) I didn't even think about it when I mentioned it. I promise I wasn't fishing for sympathy. :)

Apparently another side effect is verbosity.

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