It’s All the Crais
Robert Crais has written another terrific novel with THE SENTRY.
It would be redundant to praise him as a mystery writer. He certainly is, but you’ve read that a thousand times. What makes his books stand out are two things: the relationship between the primary male characters, and his use of Los Angeles as a character.
There’s little doubt that Joe Pike and Elvis Cole are tough, macho and capable male prototypes. Sure. That’s a given. But they also love each other. Neither has been terribly successful in affairs of the heart, but they are as close to brothers as any two non-consanguineous guys can be. (Note: I just looked up “non-consanguineous.’ It’s 7:30 a.m. on a Saturday. I did not have that word just tripping off my tongue. Sorry.)
I mean no disrespect to Robert B. Parker, but Crais captures the “band of brothers” thing with Elvis and Joe was a spare, parsimonious writing style that no other writer I know in the mystery genre can match.
Crais also does a terrific job of introducing us to Los Angeles. He’s about 15 books into this city, and by now we should be tired of the venue. But no. in THE SENTRY, he takes us to the faux canals of Venice, Calif.
I think I can safely say I have enjoyed every Robert Crais mystery; even those not in his series. THE SENTRY is another keen entry into his opera omni.