Monday, 10 March 2014

Book Report #81 - Fifty-Two Pickup by Elmore Leonard

Book 5 of 52
Page count - 239

After the adventures of Max Fisher from Ken Bruen and Jason Starr, I just had to pick up a classic Elmore Leonard.

Published in 1974 it still stood fresh and believable 40 years later.  What I love best about Leonard's writing is how delves into the world of the criminals, something I find fascinating. 

Harry Mitchell, owner of a Detroit auto parts manufacturing business, is targeted for some classic blackmail.  His affair with a younger woman was filmed and shown to him along with their demands for money.  But the bad guys have targeted a man who decides to fight back.  Harry knows that if he pays, the bad guys will not just go away.

The book was a fun read.  One of the things I like about reading older books is how they can be a snapshot of the past.  Technology is a fun one; it's easy to forget how important payphones were or how different life was without the Internet.  In the opening scene Harry is shown the movie from a portable screen and home projector.

I was a few chapters in when my wife mentioned the line at the bottom of the cover: "Soon to be a Major Movie!"  An INDb search brought up the 1986 production starring Roy Scheider and Ann-Margret.  I'll have to track it down and watch it.

If anyone is interested in the vintage paperback book itself, leave a comment and I'll contact you for a mailing address.

Elmore Leonard

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