Thursday, June 23, 2016

Man, that Gil Brewer could write

I'm reading The Erotics, a previously unpublished 1970s novel by Gil Brewer, part of a three-fer from Stark House Press. I once ranked Brewer behind Charles Williams and Peter Rabe in my small pantheon of Gold Medal paperback original writers, but Brewer may be moving up. He's almost as good as David Goodis at portraying doomed men, and his prose style is very much better than those of most other writers America was reading in the middle of the last century. (Despite its late date, the novel reads as if if had been written in the 1950s, and I mean that in the best possible way.)

By comparison, I've also been reading some Mickey Spillane and, while Spillane was indeed capable of noir poetry, he can also read like a first draft by a newspaper reporter who had something else on his mind while he was writing. Brewer was a better writer, and he could come up with lines that Spillane might have liked. Here's an example from The Erotics:
"Her name's Bernice. She's a sex-pot. I saw her once. Somebody pointed her out to me. Wow, is all I can say. And Wow again. She's a walking mattress."
 © Peter Rozovsky 2016

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Blogger Kelly Robinson said...

He's another of those authors I have stacks of books by, but haven't tackled yet. Still waiting for that immortality serum.

June 23, 2016  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Brewer's books are short and fast. They won't take much time out of your life on the off chance that immortality serum gets lost in the mail.

June 23, 2016  

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