Saturday, April 2, 2011

Why I love Joe Lansdale's writing

If you already read Lansdale, then you know what I'm talking about, and you can slide on by--unless, of course, you don't have a copy yet of Hyenas. If that's the case, stay a minute.

Subterranean Press, a publisher whose fine books I love, recently put out a limited edition of Lansdale's novella, Hyenas. It features two of Lansdale's most successful characters, Hap Collins and Leonard Pine. The Hap and Leonard books are always great, and one of the biggest reasons is Lansdale's voice. For an example, go here. I'll wait.

Most folks have one of two reactions to a chapter excerpt like this one. The first is, "WTF? Why would I want to read this garbage?" If you're one of those folks, I'm sorry, and this is definitely not for you. The second, more common (at least among my friends) response is a combination of "Wow!" and laughing out loud, even if you're alone.

I'm definitely in the second camp. Lansdale is so prolific and has so many different editions of various works in print that I'm not at all willing to claim I've read everything he's written, but I sure have read a lot of it. He's written in pretty much every genre, and though his voice is strong, it's not always the same. Most of his work exposes the dark side of life, but often you laugh at what you see. No matter what genre Lansdale is working in, however, he's excellent.

If you don't already know Lansdale, pick up Hyenas, then grab the newest Hap and Leonard novel, Devil Red, and then keep the good times rolling with more of his work. You'll be glad you did.


Ticia said...

Okay. That is phenomenal! Why have I never heard of this man?!? Must have! Thank you for telling us about him.

ROFL The word verification is "whantie". How perfect is that?

Mark said...

Joe is a wonderful writer. That is a perfect verification word.


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