Tuesday, December 25, 2012

I'm not dead...just reading a lot

With the presidential election over with, behind us, & done...I've tried to lay off of politics for a while. (Not that Obama-caused disasters aren't still happening, I'm just tired of reading and discussing them.)  So I've taken advantage of my Kindle Fire and have been reading a lot. Books by Bob Newhart (ghostwritten, ahem,) Asmiov, Lawrence Block, Doyle, and several more have provided me with a lot of mental fodder.

The latest book I read was by Trent Zelazny, son of Roger Zelazny.  Zelazny the Younger is from Santa Fe, and writes fiction in the genre(s) which I happen to delve into with my own fiction writing.  The book, Too Late to Call Texas, really hits home as it's set in southern New Mexico, and the city of Seminole, Texas plays prominently in the plot.  (He also mentions, in passing, Andrews, Lubbock, Abilene and San Antonio.)

Not to give too much away, but the protagonist, a white trash* cowboy type, happens upon a pile of drugs and drug money, goes back to his trailer house and his white trash wife, then runs when the owners of said drugs and money chase after him.

If that sounds familiar, it's because the main plot is very similar to No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy, which I read (and very briefly reviewed) back in 2006. If you watched the movie (or even - gasp!- read the book,) you already know how that story plays out.

The main difference in the two stories is that Zelazny gives it the more genre fiction treatment.  Lots more cussing and sex, and even, if you can believe it, more action.  Without trying to ruin the book for any of his potential readers -- stop reading now if you are afraid of inadvertent spoilers -- I finished Zelazny's book to see how far he was going to follow NCfOM's storyline.

I'll be danged if he didn't follow it all the way to the bitter end.  A bit of a disappointment, but it makes me feel better about those times when my own stories seem too derivative.

* I can call people "white trash" because I are one.  Substitute redneck if that soothes your hurt sensibilities.

1 comment:

Tracy said...

I loved Roger Zelazny's "Chronicles of Amber." I might have to give this a try just for the name recognition factor.