Friday, August 16, 2013

Busted, Part II

Remember last week's post about my bus trip from Boston, a journey extended from eight hours to ten by highway tie-ups that pushed my arrival smack into the middle of Philadelphia's evening rush hour? You know, the post that began "Remind me never to travel by bus again"?

That was a longish trip; what could possibly happen on a short hop, like the one from Philadelphia to New York? I pondered the question Thursday as my bus sat in a spreading red pool of engine coolant on the shoulder of Route 90 in Pennsauken, New Jersey, waiting for a tow truck, a replacement bus, and an ambulance for the cardiac patient/passenger who had begun feeling faint during the delay.

The new bus arrived, the heart patient was all right, and I found Derry's own Desmond Doherty, for whose debut novel, Valberg, I inverted a few commas and made sure no dashes were used where hyphens were called for, browsing patiently in the Mysterious Bookshop in Lower Manhattan when I arrived, barely half an hour late for our meeting.

The day's haul included books by John Lawton, J. Robert Janes, and "Owen Fitzstephen," and some good Derry stories over lunch from Doherty, a lawyer with business on both sides of the Atlantic who made the brave decision not to make his debut novel the story of a lawyer with business on both sides of the Atlantic.

The book is a serial killer/police procedural/story of its city that does, however, incorporate some of Doherty's own professional experiences, including a heart-rending bit of backstory. I'll look forward to discussing the novel's sequels with Doherty, only I'm traveling to our next meeting by plane.

© Peter Rozovsky 2013

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7 Comments:

Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

Ooh, I zeroed in on J. Robert Janes. Do I recall correctly that you haven't read him yet?

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

You do, though I know of his work. I also saw him on a Bouchercon panel one year and, for someone who writes about such a touch subject, he seems a relaxed, loosey-goosey type of guy in public.

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

If you zeroed in, I presume you're read him, probably the Kohler-St. Cyr books?

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

Yup. I think we've discussed them before. I'm pretty fond of them.

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Do you remember where we discussed them? If not, what do you like about them? And how do you get around that delicate question Janes addresses in an author's note at the beginning of each book, about the ticklish issue of writing about "ordinary" crimes during Nazi occuption, with a a Surete and a Gestapo officer working together?

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

I can't remember what post it was on. I can't think of anyone who writes quite like him. There are things about his style that I don't like, but I still find it compelling. Some pretty brutal things happen in the books, but they don't seem heavy-handed or written for shock. They seem real. I guess that's what I appreciate -- he does a good job with evoking the place and the time, and all the nasty bits that come along with it.

I wish you would read one, because I know you could describe them much better than I could. All I know is I like 'em.

August 16, 2013  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

That's not a bad job of describing the books. And I can assure you that I will reading a few of his books over the next month or so and very likely writing about them here.

August 16, 2013  

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