Book Review – Raylan by Elmore Leonard

Since I have not read a book for review this week, I’m re-posting a blog piece from 2013. 

I thought I would try something different this week. Thanks to a tip from Kristen Lamb, an awesome lady who gives advice to writers on her blog, I found out about a different approach to blog sharing. I have had writer friends, Slim Randles, Tracy Farr and Carl Brookins who have either sent me a review, as in the case of Carl, or given me permission to use one of their blog posts or essays. But what Kristen suggested recently is that we give a teaser on our blog with a link to the site where the original was posted.

Since Sunday is my usual day for a book review, I decided I would link to one of the premier review places, The New York Times. Here is the opening of a recent review of Elmore Leonard’s latest book, Raylan. The review was written by Olen Steinhauer.

 In an essay that appeared in The New York Times in 2001, “Easy on the Adverbs, Exclamation Points and Especially Hooptedoodle,” Elmore Leonard listed his 10 rules of writing. The final one — No. 11, actually — the “most important rule . . . that sums up the 10,” is “If it sounds like writing, I rewrite it.” It’s a terrific rule. In fact, I liked it so much that I passed it on to a creative-writing class I once taught. However, there’s more to it, which I didn’t pass on: “Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I can’t allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the ­narrative.”

I thought this was a bit serendipitous, as Leonard is one of my favorite authors, and I love his rules of writing, especially:  “Or, if proper usage gets in the way, it may have to go. I can’t allow what we learned in English composition to disrupt the sound and rhythm of the ­narrative.”

What we learned in school does not always apply to writing fiction. The rhythm of the words is so very important in setting the tone and moving the story along.

I hope you can go read the rest of the review of the new book in which U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, now the star of the TV show “Justified,” returns to confront gambling, mining and organ trafficking in Elmore Leonard’s latest.

The book is still available, and the television series that ran from 2010 to 2015 can be seen on Netflix.
One Perfect Love is the sequel to One Small Victory, and both books are still priced at only .99 each. Grab your copies before the price goes upon Thursday.

 Praise for One Perfect Love

“Jenny Jasik is one tough cookie. Two years ago, her son’s tragic death propelled her to join a drug task force. Working undercover, she helped take down a major dealer. So of course, when her florist shop is burglarized, she can’t sit on the sidelines and wait for the police to find the criminal. But this time, her investigation leads to much more than an arrest. Is it finally going to be happy-ever-after for Jenny and Steve? Buckle up for the exciting conclusion to Jenny’s story!” Catherine Richmond, Inspirational Romance author of Third Cord of the Strand, Spring for Susannah, and Gilding the Waters.

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