Sunday, October 23, 2011

I'll shut up about Derek Raymond one day ...

 ... but not just yet. I mentioned that The Devil's Home on Leave sticks somewhat more closely to outward forms of the police procedural than did I Was Dora Suarez, the one previous novel of Raymond's that I'd read.

There's also more than a bit of the serial-killer novel to the book, which makes me wonder what role Raymond played in the development of that subgenre. (The Devil's Home on Leave, second of Raymond's "Factory" novels, appeared in 1985.)

The nameless detective sergeant's interrogation of the killer, conducted on visits to the killer's home, are informal, (verbally) harsh, full of mutual goading, and punctuated in at least one case by a beer break in which both take part. That's not just a good way for the investigator to get inside the villain's head, but also for the villain to do the same to his questioner.

© Peter Rozovsky 2011

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8 Comments:

Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

Ooh, I'll be adding him to the list.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger seana said...

I read this one, but too long ago now to remember the plot. I know it was a bit violent for my taste at the time, but I've probably become more inured since then, like everybody else.

We have the new edition copies in now and they are an attractive set, but I don't think people know him well enough here. I'm going to have to piece together some kind of writeup.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Kelly, I don't what to tell you except that if you've read some of today's harder-boiled crime writers and then you read Derek Raymond, you'll see where they got their chops -- or what they would be if they had Raymond's aching and sometimes futile compassion.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Seana, this one is not nearly as graphic in its depiction of violence and disease as is I Was Dora Suarez, but it's up there. And if readers are going to encounter violence, why not do so in a place where it hits hard and does not appeal to prurience?

You might introduce Derek Raymond to readers who like Ken Bruen, Allan Guthrie, or Ian Rankin. He also gets a nice blurb from James Sallis.

And the new editions' orange covers might fit nicely in a Halloween display.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger seana said...

Good idea about the Halloween theme. Might as well milk it.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger seana said...

I know you'll probably take it down, but that last spam comment made me laugh.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Yes, I think poor Derek is beyond worrying about hair by now.

October 23, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Yep, you still have a few days to milk the Halloween theme. I'm not sure I'd suggest slipping Factory novels into trick-or-treaters bags. But some "If you like ... you might like Derek Raymond" tags appropriately placed in the store might not go amiss.

October 23, 2011  

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