Monday, July 17, 2006

RIP, Mickey...

Just found out that Mickey Spillane has passed away. He was 88 years old. One of my favorite writers, he is always an inspiration. His prose is lucid, dripping with detail, and--most importantly--kinetic. I appreciated how his mysteries were not hackneyed yarns that you race to finish before the end of the book--they seem to be written off the cusp, improvised almost: it's about how Mike Hammer acts and reacts. When actions spoke louder than words, the action hollered. And Hammer, too, is not the usual detective hero: he's not the smartest cookie, but he's the most wired, explosive detective there ever was, and he'd go farther than anyone around. That was his strength: to be unafraid of extremes. The same can be said of Spillane's writing, which unabashedly used italics and exclamation points, punctuation that has become taboo over the years. Spillane was fearless.

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