Elizabeth's Reviews > The Sweet Forever

The Sweet Forever by George Pelecanos
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's review
Sep 13, 2007

liked it

George Pelecanos writes for The Wire and David Simon raves about him so he's been a 'to-read' for a while. I've finally read a few of his novels and this is my favorite. He writes about DC, the part that feels a lot like Baltimore, and this book, unlike his later ones, isn't strictly a crime novel. The backdrop of the book is the 1986 NCAA tournament - the year of Len Bias - and there are great thematic connections between the frenetic pace and unpredictability of the tournament, the 1980's cocaine epidemic, and the street violence that sweeps up the characters. It's highly structured without feeling artificial. Dialogue and character are his strengths but this book is also very well-crafted. It was pure enjoyment.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Molly (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:29PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Molly Oooo I want to read this. I can't wait for season 5 of the wire to start. Is it true it is focused on the press?? Marc is sooooo excited.

message 2: by Elizabeth (last edited Aug 25, 2016 12:29PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Elizabeth You'll definitely like it - it sounds like the Wire. I heard the press and politics and corruption - they've filmed a lot in the courthouse where I work but the crew is so tight-lipped I haven't heard much. I saw the tail end of one scene being filmed. It was a grand jury hearing and the State Senator Clay something was there.

Molly You were right - I loved it! Read it in a few days of Christmas! WHat do you think of the Wire this season? It is so frustrating for me to watch because of all the newsroom stuff - I get mad when he portrays reporters taking short-cuts!

I thought of you yesterday because I downloaded "99 Luftballoons" and have become mildly obsessed with relearning the German lyrics this weekend.

Elizabeth I get frustrated by the portrayal of the political players and their interactions - it's heavily cynical which I could live with, except that it's also distorted and the combination is wildly irritating. I still love the show but increasingly I see David Simon's personality and know-it-all self-righteousness coming through which detracts. The media part is really frustrating too - it feels like a caricature and I am certainly no fan of the Sun.

Molly Gosh, I am so glad I am not the only one. I was thinking maybe I thought that because I'd read so many of the stories about David Simon that I was seeing his point of view in the episodes, but I really do think it is true that it just isn't the same as the previous seasons.

Normally the characters are so complex they feel like real people and you love them and hate them but the newsroom "young cub" reporter - there's nothing likeable about him or the editors! It's clear how biased he is.

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