Evan's Reviews > Deliverance

Deliverance by James Dickey
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's review
Mar 12, 09

bookshelves: modern-library-top-100-list, __in-my-collection, adventure-fiction, survival
Read in December, 2008

Some impressions of the book four months after having read it:

The book, unlike the film, is told completely from the perspective of ad agency studio artist Ed Gentry, and so there's a lot of stuff about his home, work, family and his lust for an artist's model that are completely missing from the film. The filter of having it all told by him, with his analysis, also is not part of the movie. Ed is a main character in the film, for sure, but quite diminished in the screen version.

The first encounter with hillbillies as the men set out on their adventure is far less ominous in the book than in the film. "I like the way you wear that hat" and the reaction of the hillbilly in the film ("You don't know nuthin'") is a lot more eerie in the movie.

Ed's climb up the hill to slay his invisible adversary is a tour de force of meticulous description in the book that is shorthanded in the movie.

Ed's following of his "prey" after striking him is more drawn out and interesting in the book.

Both versions, book and film, are excellent. Each does honor to the other. But I was glad to have finally read the book after having seen the film so many times over the years. Highly recommended.

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12/04/2008 page 12
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