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Book Title: Head Games|
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 2009 times
Reader ratings: 6.7
The author of the book: Craig McDonald
Edition: Bleak House Books
Date of issue: September 1st 2007
ISBN 13: 9781932557428
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 379 KB
Read full description of the books:
You start a book like Head Games, set as it is in the fifties, and you wonder if it has to go so hard on period details like casual homophobia, and so often at that. The first novel written in Craig McDonald's Hector Lassiter series, although the seventh chronologically, starts well. People die indiscriminately, life is cheap, and women are accommodating without being doormats ... but then we get that little sting of poison.
The argument goes that homophobia was period accurate, but so was sexism and racism, and Lassiter is actually fairly enlightened on both of those counts. It wouldn't kill him, or McDonald, to not be like this - but that's what we've got ... and, fortunately, we can sort of get over it.
Because the thing is Head Games is ultimately a rollicking caper with a hardboiled protagonist in the form of hard drinking pulp novelist, screenwriter, and name dropper extraordinaire Hector Lassiter. Possibly McDonald wasn't planning a series at the time, or he might not have gone so hard on cramming Welles, Dietrich, and Hemingway in so soon, or set the novel so close to the end of Lassiter's life, but that's just the way it is.
Head Games is the sort of novel that you pick up for its name and concept combo: Lassiter goes on the road with a journalist and an actress with the purported skull of Pancho Villa, trying to protect it from falling into the hands of various fraternity members, treasure hunters, and the Bush family (that Bush family). Apart from the glaring flaw in Lassiter's character, he's a good lead and he carries the novel well. Some versions are paired with the short story in which he was introduced, which dovetails with the conclusion of the novel itself - the light contradictions that don't jive with Lassiter character make one question its canonicity, but it's helpful to have to hand.
McDonald wrote himself into several corners with Head Games, so one may want to forgive him for any retcons that have to be made along the way. There is a degree of forgiveness that you have to engage in to be able to stomach Head Games in its entirety, but if you can get past that sticking point it goes down very easily indeed.
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Read information about the authorEdgar/Anthony-nominee Craig McDonald is an award-winning novelist, editor and journalist. His internationally acclaimed Hector Lassiter series includes "One True Sentence," "Forever's Just Pretend," "Toros & Torsos," "The Great Pretender," "Roll the Credits," "The Running Kind," "Print the Legend," "Three Chords & the Truth," "Write From Wrong," and "Head Games," which was a finalist for the Edgar, Anthony, Gumshoe and Crimespree Magazine awards for best first novel. It is being adapted as a graphic novel by First Second for release in 2015.
A standalone thriller about illegal immigration, "El Gavilan," was published in autumn 2011 to starred reviews and was also selected for several year's best lists.
A new series of direct-to-eBook thrillers featuring crime novelist Chris Lyon was launched in 2012; the series features crossovers by characters from the Hector Lassiter series; Hector himself appears in "Angels of Darkness."
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