Wednesday, September 10, 2014

REVIEW: Smoke 'Em if You Got 'Em by Chris Leek

Chris Leek is one of the best practitioners of the crime short story, which he sets out to prove in Smoke 'Em if You Got 'Em. He's appeared a couple of times before in All Due Respect, stories with crackling dialogue and a strong sense of rural America.

In a genre that loves its despicable assholes and filthy sadists, he often writes about surprisingly decent characters. Sure, they've fucked up a time or ten, but they were just trying to get by, and maybe now they're even trying to set things right.

These are the kind of people from messed up families and messed up towns, who are struggling in more ways than one. Yet this book is a lot of fun--Leek's sharp sense of humor and narrative drive keep the pages turning. And these characters still have hopes and dreams--usually about Vegas or drinking or smoking that last cigarette.

Be sure to pick this one up--AND he's got another coming out soon from One Eye Press, Gospel of the Bullet.

1 comment:

  1. Gospel of the Bullet will blow your mind. A Brit has written the successor to True Grit. That rhymed. I should write a haiku.