13 July, 2012
The Friends of Eddie Coyle by George V Higgins (1971)
This book should be a showcase for aspiring crime writers. Coyle is a small-time crook who has been painted into a corner by the law and has to make some very careful choices. Pretty standard stuff? Yeah, except the entire story is carried exclusively by fizzing, gritty dialogue that makes the whole grubby world of Boston lowlifes almost lift off the page. This was Higgins' first novel, and although he went on to write quite a few more, he doesn't get the recognition he deserves. Guess Cold War thrillers were the order of the day and he kinda fell through the cracks. Pity.