The Expendable Man
“It was surprising what old experiences remembered could do to a presumably educated, civilized man.” And Hugh Denismore, a young doctor driving his mother’s Cadillac from Los Angeles to Phoenix, is eminently educated and civilized. He is privileged, would seem to have the world at his feet,... show more
“It was surprising what old experiences remembered could do to a presumably educated, civilized man.” And Hugh Denismore, a young doctor driving his mother’s Cadillac from Los Angeles to Phoenix, is eminently educated and civilized. He is privileged, would seem to have the world at his feet, even. Then why does the sight of a few redneck teenagers disconcert him? Why is he reluctant to pick up a disheveled girl hitchhiking along the desert highway? And why is he the first person the police suspect when she is found dead in Arizona a few days later?Dorothy B. Hughes ranks with Raymond Chandler and Patricia Highsmith as a master of mid-century noir. In books like In a Lonely Place and Ride the Pink Horse she exposed a seething discontent underneath the veneer of twentieth-century prosperity. With The Expendable Man, first published in 1963, Hughes upends the conventions of the wrong-man narrative to deliver a story that engages readers even as it implicates them in the greatest of all American crimes.
Publish date: 2012-07-03
Publisher: NYRB Classics
Pages no: 264
Edition language: English
, Literary Fiction
, Mystery Thriller
Venner departed with the hate still ugly in his eyes, with more hate for an innocent Hugh than for a guilty. The Venners would not be changed in their generation. I'm not going to provide many plot details for this book as I found it hugely beneficial to know next to nothing about this book. Every...
A very smart, cleverly written and well paced noir. Hughes places an interesting spin on the wrong man noir genre here, with a soaring critique and indictment of societal prejudices and injustices.
I've read a lot of noir fiction/crime by such auhors as Raymond Chandler and James Cain, but this book was more satisfying and engaging than any I've read. Sadly, I'd never heard of Dorothy B Hughes despite the fact that she wrote some of the finest crime fiction of her (or our) day. She's now bein...