Written in homage to the hard-boiled detective novels of the 1950s, Falling Angel follows the efforts of private eye Harry Angel, who’s hunting a missing big-band front man, Johnny Favorite. When the investigation takes a turn for the bizarre, Angel must fight for his life, sanity, and soul. The novel won a Playboy Editorial Award for Best Major Work, with Graham Greene co...more
Thanks Jeff- just what I was in the mood for.
FALLING ANGEL...the 2nd novel I have read this month that Mickey Rourke stared in the movie...but this time, the book was sooooooooooooooo much better than the film...and it has nothing to do with the fact that Mickey is cuter in Nine and a Half Weeks- I swear.
New York City 1959
Private investigator- Harry Angel is hired by mysterious client- Louis Cyphre to find Johnny Favorite- a cr ...more
‘Pretty good. Go on.’
‘Your role-playing ability has a darker side and presents a problem when you confront the dual nature of your personality. I would say that you were frequently the victim of doubt. Cruelty comes easily to you, y ...more
There are two reasons I bought this book. 1. I bought it at my favorite brick and mortar bookstore, Bunch of Grapes(http://bunchofgrapes.com/), because I wanted to contribute in some small way to their beautiful store. 2. Because my friend Marc has been hounding me to read it for a couple of years now. He was right, and I now wish I had read this book sooner.
This is a crime-noir novel, written in the 70's but actually taking place in the early 50's. As such, there are some racist comm ...more
The story is set in 1959. New York City P.I. Harry Angel is hired by a mysterious man named Louis Cyphre to track down a former popular singer named Johnny Favorite. As the Second World War began, Favorite was becoming a major star on the order of what Frank Sinatra woul ...more
The obviousness of the plot and the literary devices did make it extra-amusing that my copy was annotated by someone who pointed out all the most obvious things:
'Cause I just had to see, was someone watching me.
In the mist dark figures move and twist
Was all this for real, or just some kind of hell?
666 the number of the beast
Hell and fire was spawned to be released.”
(cue face-melting guitar solo)
“The Number Of The Beast” - IronMaiden
“I took a closer look at what protruded from his swollen lips and suddenly one drink wasn’t going to be enough.”
That quote from the book made me chuckle, William Hjortsberg’s prose ...more
Angel interviews a cast of characters and the story seems to take on a run of the mill "interview and look for loopholes in the story" plot. The occasional gruesome murder that seems to dog Angel keeps the story ...more
I've watched Angel Heart several times over the years, having no idea until last year it was spawned from a novel. Unobservant me never noticed until it was brought up in someone else's review. Being a fan of the twisted supernatural story-line meets hard boiled detective, I instantly purchased it. Did the book hold up to the movie?
I have never seen the movie Angel Heart (1987) which is based on this book, so I went in with very little knowledge of what happens. I want to watch the movie now!
The story is set in 1959 in New York City as P.I. Harry Angel is hi ...more
Falling Angel tells the story of Harry Angel: a P.I. hired by a mysterious stranger to find out the whereabouts of 1940's crooner Johnny Favorite. What seems fairly straightforward at first glance becomes more and more compl ...more
What a thoroughly enjoyable hard boiled detective thriller. I picked this one up thanks to recommendations from Goodreads as I normally do not veer into the straight up mystery genre. To my surprise I had a tough time putting down this noir thriller.
Hjortsberg does a fabulous job of giving this story a 1950's feel. He stays true to the noir genre. First person narrations, plenty of dark and gloomy environments, and a hero that is also flawed and more real. The plot can be some what compl ...more
In preparation for this review, I read the book again. I don’t usually re-read books as there’s too much out there I haven’t read. But I felt the passage of 30 years w ...more
When I got off the phone I checked Kindle and there it was. I downloaded it and began reading. I read it in two days also.
Noir, Jazz, Mystery, Voodoo, The Occult, familiar locale and even a real life character I remember. That's a five star formul ...more
5 STARS, favorited ...more
Constant pacing and a more than satisfying ending. Highly recommended.
Although a film was made of this novel in 1987 (Angel Heart), the book had already been released nearly a decade earlier, so I consider this an undiscovered book, despite the recent promotion by the new publisher. The author Hjortsberg I put in the same category, i.e. undiscovered, at ...more
After probably twenty years or so, I decided to pick this up and read it again. It stood the test of time quite well-- possibly since I have in the interim read a lot of other authors, his literary allusions might stand out better to my mind now. The tale begins as a first-person narrative by a private detective, told in the now-familiar manner of Chandler and Ross MacDonald. The action takes place over ...more
I've seen the movie of this book and although there are some similarities they are vastly different. I liked the character of Angel even though he played fast and loose with the law, he was well written and ...more
When his fellowsh ...more