Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Two Sentence Tuesday

I'm taking my time reading The Goliath Bone to really enjoy it since it's chronologically the final Mike Hammer novel. So far, it's tops. Spillane has a stylistic approach all his own as our favorite detective deals with Islamic terrorists, Israeli extremists, and the alleged preserved femur of one Biblical giant. I decided to highlight some of his descriptive text:

He wore no topcoat—he’d gone from the phone call from me straight to his limo and here. In his early sixties, he looked like what the guy in the old Arrow Shirt ads might have aged into, movie-star handsome with steel gray hair but black eyebrows over green eyes that could eat you alive and the kind of quietly regal demeanor high officials assume when they wear the robes of office.
To think that Phillip Marlowe had been pounding the pavement for years when Hammer first appeared on the scene in I, The Jury in 1947. Marlowe 'soon retired' to Poodle Springs, but not Hammer and Velda. They are in New York still fighting the good fight in 2008. That makes for a good feeling.

My two pitiful lines come from a story that has been idle for more than a year, and I can see why. It doesn't hold a candle to the fine words of Spillane but maybe if I keep working at it. Here's something from "The Suitcase":

After the drug had worn off the confined denizen, the sound of a latch sliding open inside the suitcase resonated throughout the empty diner. A small figure stepped free from the leather prison, stretching his muscles and yowling.
Yowling? That probably gives away our confined denizen. And denizen? Ha! Back to the drawing board as they say.

For more Two Sentence Tuesday, check out the Women of Mystery...

13 comments:

ARCHAVIST said...

Is this the new one from Hard Case Crime? was this novel finished by Max Allen Collins after Spillane's death? If so I think I've been reading out it.

David Cranmer said...

The Hard Case was called Dead Street and featured NYPD Captain Jack “Shooter” Stang. It was also finished by Max Allan Collins and I've heard it's a seamless job. The Goliath Bone is a Hammer novel. What I like best is Mike is acting his age. When some punks take a shot at him and go out the window. He fires back but doesn't give chase. He says: "I was no kid, and wasn't kidding myself otherwise. Once upon a time I'd have been out on that fire escape, ice be damned, scrambling down the stairs into whatever hell those two wanted to throw back at me. But I was faster then..." Of course, he still kicks ass. So far, it's classic Spillane.

Charles Gramlich said...

I don't know, man. I liked your lines. But I can be pretty cricial of Spillane.

pattinase (abbott) said...

When you're done with his whole oeuvre, tell me what one I should read since I never have.

Barbara Martin said...

David, there's nothing wrong with your two lines.

Sarah Hina said...

I liked eyes that could eat you alive. Nice intensity there.

I agree with you about "denizen," but otherwise, your lines are nicely evocative. I very much appreciate those small, sensory details, like a latch sliding open in quiet space.

Thanks for coming by my blog, David.

Josh said...

great lines

Terrie Farley Moran said...

Hi David,

I agree with you and with Sarah about denizens.

There is a nice rhythm to the way you string your words in this bit of story.

Terrie

David Cranmer said...

Thanks everyone for the kind words. I'll have to work on those few glitches. I hope you all go over to Women of Mystery for more Two Sentences.

Thanks, Sarah, for stopping by... Everyone should also check out her blog for some excellent poetry.

Patty, it may take me a little time but I'll get back to you.

Clare2e said...

Hey, denizens have their places. You'll figure out where and when to stuff their yowling yaps.

David Cranmer said...

Clare, you always give me cause to smile. Thanks.

Rachel Burton said...

I got a great visual from your two sentences - the empty diner, the lone suitcase. Of course, I'd have to know more about the denizen to have a verdict on "yowling!"

David Cranmer said...

Thanks Rachel. Hopefully, I can get back in and finish this story.