Thursday, June 16, 2011

I Wanna Be Somewhere Sunny

I just finished Don Winslow's 'The Gentlemen's Hour' and it really brought home to me how miserable our late-onset spring really is. I mean, the man's writing about a Southern California full of cartels and sleazy developers and torturers-for-hire and all I can think is that at least the damned sun is shining.

I'm not a surfer. Never have been. Haven't ever even really known any. Couldn't tell you diddly about the sport except what's glaringly obvious--it's athletic people balancing on boards in the ocean. However, I love Don Winslow's mysteries set in the surfing community in and around San Diego. Even a complete outsider like me can understand the surfing mindset and culture a little, the way Winslow writes about it. Plus, the guy knows how to plot a decent mystery. I think it's highly unfortunate that probably his best-known book is 'Savages', which isn't about this culture at all. That's not to say that 'Savages' is a bad book, by any means. It's just missing that ineffable something that makes his "surf" books such must-reads for me. 'The Gentlemen's Hour' is the second Winslow title to feature PI Boone Daniels and the members of the Dawn Patrol (the first was 'The Dawn Patrol', natch) and I really, really hope he has plans to give these characters a longer series. Unlike a lot of characters in crime fiction, these are the kinds of folks I, at least, wouldn't mind hanging out with in real life, so spending several hundred more pages with them would be no kind of hardship. It doesn't hurt, either, that, where these guys are, the sun seems always to be shining, even while the shit rains down.

And, right now, I could do with a little more sunshine.

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