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General Discussion and News => Chat => Topic started by: Ingrid on October 17, 2006, 01:58:21 PM

Title: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 17, 2006, 01:58:21 PM
This is a wonderful book -- lean, rich, and powerful.  To my mind, it achieves all that crime fiction can and should achieve.  It is one of the Jack Taylor novels (the others were also great), but incredibly controlled in style so that it isn't very long but packs an enormous punch.  It is a character-driven novel.  In fact, while it would probably be defined as P.I., such distinctions don't seem to apply.  It is primarily a very human novel which is also coincidently about serial crime and a page turner.

Ingrid 
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Susan August on October 17, 2006, 04:15:55 PM
I'm reading Killing the Tinkers right now...first time reading K Bruen.  I'm having some trouble with the dialogue which I find confusing, but hope that if I stick with it, I'll 'get it' soon.

Susan
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 17, 2006, 05:20:19 PM
He has an odd habit of separating speaker and speech by starting a new line.  He also centers thematic nouns, usually three, like poems in the text in the earlier Taylor novels.  This takes some getting used to.  I believe he is experimenting with the novel form.  Not sure what is being gained by the dialogue thing, but the thematic nouns are relevant to the meaning.

Other than that, this is a book about the Irish.  They talk like that. I like that part very much because it gives you insight into a mindset that is different and, in its own way, fine and admirable.

Ingrid
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: JIM DOHERTY on October 17, 2006, 06:37:33 PM
Nothing to do with Bruen's writing, but I had the opportunity to talk to him at Bouchercon.  He mentioned that he lost his older daughter earlier this year in a car accident.

I think he'd appreciate any good thoughts and prayers that might be sent his way.
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Susan August on October 17, 2006, 07:03:34 PM
I think I had heard that here or on DL, about his daughter.  There is no greater tragedy than surviving a child, IMHO.  I'm trying to 'learn' Irish-speak, though I wish the book was more helpful to the uninitiated!  I am sure if I used 'pharma-speak' in my WIP without translating, it would not be tolerated. But then, the Irish are undoubtedly more revered than the pharmaceutical industry.  Alas, I am doomed to be amongst those ranked with tobacco growers and HMOs.  Perhaps I can create some good will with my writing, though I'm sure the issue is much bigger than me. :(

Susan
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Daniel Hatadi on October 17, 2006, 07:45:46 PM
I've read a few of Bruen's novels and plan to read more. Haven't caught up to THE DRAMATIST, but THE KILLING OF THE TINKERS is excellent. Brutal ending. With THE GUARDS I found myself getting annoyed at Bruen's writing idiosyncrasies, but I think he's finally programmed me to understand them. One thing I never had trouble with was the language. Maybe because I'm Aussie or maybe there's just a lot of Irish pubs around here, not sure.

Can't wait to read THE DRAMATIST, but I have a mountain of books to climb before I get there.
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Caro on October 17, 2006, 10:34:59 PM
I was absolutely stunned by the first Bruen book I read! I've read a few more and bought some at B'Con, too.  Haven't made it to The Dramatist, yet, but looking forward to it.

I enjoyed him so much I've invited him to be the International Guest of Honour at Bloody Words when it gets back to Toronto in 2008!

Caro
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Poisonguy on October 18, 2006, 05:20:55 AM
I loved what Bruen did with Tinkers, eventhough it was a little thin on Story for my usual taste. However, good writing is good writing. I've kept the goode ole chap on my "To read" list.

What the heck is a thematic noun? How about an example, Ingrid? Educate the poor Canadian cretin.
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 18, 2006, 01:34:21 PM
Nothing to do with Bruen's writing, but I had the opportunity to talk to him at Bouchercon.  He mentioned that he lost his older daughter earlier this year in a car accident.

I think he'd appreciate any good thoughts and prayers that might be sent his way.

Oh, Jim, that's a lovely idea, but I'm entirely to timid to write to him.  He'll remember you (I only met him for a moment in Chicago).  Why don't you drop him a note and tell him that other fans from MWF send their best to him and his family?

Ingrid
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 18, 2006, 01:39:06 PM
 Poisonguy writes:  "What the heck is a thematic noun? How about an example, Ingrid? Educate the poor Canadian cretin."   You're way too hard on yourself.  :)

This is my fault.  I made up the term in lieu of a better idea how to describe it.

Okay.  From THE DRAMATIST:

   In my years on the force, I encountered every type of

                           Trickster
                           Con man
                           Villain
                           Rogue.

   And the years after I met the

                            Sad
                            Lonely
                            Depressed
                            Dispirited.



Ingrid
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: JIM DOHERTY on October 18, 2006, 02:11:40 PM
Ingrid,

Re your nice comments below:

"Oh, Jim, that's a lovely idea, but I'm entirely to timid to write to him.  He'll remember you (I only met him for a moment in Chicago).  Why don't you drop him a note and tell him that other fans from MWF send their best to him and his family?"

I meant private prayers and good thoughts.  I believe prayer works even if the person prayed for doesn't know about it.

I've already sent him a Mass card. 
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 18, 2006, 05:22:29 PM
Ah!  Hmm!  I thought I fixed that typo ("to" into "too").  This site is still a bit strange to me.  Take it as corrected.

Ingrid
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Poisonguy on October 19, 2006, 05:53:12 AM
Thanks, Ingrid. I think I get it.  :-\ I hope it's not formatted in this way, though!
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Ingrid on October 19, 2006, 01:41:37 PM
It is indeed formatted that way.  I had some trouble replicating it.  :)

The guy has no respect for the conventions.  Or rules.  Nice, that!

Ingrid
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Angie on October 22, 2006, 12:28:03 AM
I adore Ken Bruen's writing.  His books are the first I've come across in ages that are actually on the experimental edge without losing sight of character and story.  Bruen is, by far, my favorite contemporary writer.  I haven't gotten to The Dramatist yet, but it's on my top 5 TBR list.

Angie J-S 
Title: Re: Ken Bruen's THE DRAMATIST
Post by: Michele Viney on October 23, 2006, 05:28:38 AM
I sent Ken an email via his web site when I first heard about his daughters death (thank's Jim for letting me know on the old MWF site). I used to know him well when I lived in Galway, and he is a very unusual man, practically self educated, and I think that with his own extraordinary experiences have of course shaped his writing.

 I admit the first time I read one of his - THE GUARDS - I was reviewing it! I did find the style a little odd but he has really captured the cadence of speech in Galway. Reading one of his Irish set novels will prepare you nicely if any of you plan to come to Ireland and the West of Ireland particularly.

I'm sure Ken would like to hear from people - for whatever reason he is a very approachable man

Michele
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