I often struggle with JLB, most times I feel like I waited entirely too long to become a fan and sometimes I wonder if I would have really appreciated and understood his style at any earlier age. Jolie Blon's Bounce is the work that has really epitomized that internal dilemma.
In this book I realized that most of the Robicheaux series is constructed around a tight formula. Something occurs to set Dave into motion, and he of the eternal good heart bounces around off of the lives of the guilty and innocent alike, and irritating the sheriff in the process. His blunderbuss weapon of choice, Clete Purcell, wields mayhem and chaos while getting his heart broken by an unlikely cast of lovers. Dave and Clete take turns saving one another, and sometimes justice gets served to all. The thing is, I am ok with this formula. JLB writes the characters and the places so well, I want to experience them over and over again. JLB certainly delivers in this book.
Last night I finished re-reading Jolie Blon's Bounce and I think I loved it better this time than I did when I first read it five years ago. It is part of Burke's terrific Dave Robicheaux series set in New Iberia, Louisiana and it seethes with atmosphere from alligators peering through Spanish moss hung trees to the ominous dark clouds laced with lightning hovering over the Gulf of Mexico but not coming ashore to relieve the relentless drought and heat. Dave Robicheaux may be one of the most interesting characters in American literature, a tormented cop with a history of addiction and bad luck with women. James Lee Burke may be one of the best writers in American literature with a gift for description, of both characters and settings, that is so finely-tuned you are rarely aware of the writing you get so lost in the story.
So the last few evenings I've been deep into New Iberia amid a cast of zydeco musicians, gangsters, Cajun fishermen, corrupt cops, good cops battling...
Always a perfect read from James lee Burke and this was no exception. He has to be the most outstanding writer with his descriptive ability. I can picture the scenes almost as though i were watching a movie instead of just reading a book. I am always eager to read every page and can hardly put the stories down but when I am finished with the book, I feel like I just lost friends. So I am on to the next one. What will I do when I have finally read all of his stories!!!! Dave Robicheaux is a character all can identify with, I like him better even than Jack Reacher and that's saying a lot!
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