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Absolute Perfection of Crime Hardcover – Jan 1 2003


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1 pages
  • Publisher: New Press (Jan. 1 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1565847571
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565847576
  • Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 14.9 x 19.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 204 g
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,089,271 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
The French fascination with noir is demonstrated in this unsatisfying novella about a casino heist in an anonymous coastal city. The book starts with the release of the narrator's partner, Marin, from jail after three years. The two are part of a tiny "family" of gangsters with a bedridden old man as godfather. Led by Marin, the gang is just tough enough to control a small piece of the action, but are minor players in the underworld. Marin emerges from jail with a grand scheme to rob a casino in what will be "the absolute perfection of crime". The narrator and another gang member, Andrei, realize that the job is beyond them and it will all end badly, yet true to the noir form, they accept the inevitability of fate and go along with everything. It's all atmosphere and terse sentences as the group plans, and then in an odd shift, the narrator describes the actual heist in a reenacting for a judge. Clearly things didn't quite work out, and indeed, the "absolute perfection" disintegrated in in a shootout with the cops. The final part of the story shows the narrator emerging from jail after seven years to track down his betrayer and exact revenge. Even though all the elements are there: betrayal, death, a beautiful woman, a heist, revenge- it's never all that interesting. Perhaps because it's little more than homage to a hundred films and books we've already seen and read, and has no voice of its own. If you're really after French noir, I'd suggest finding one of Jean-Patrick Manchette's recently translated books from the '70s, like The Prone Gunman.
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Format: Hardcover
I must confess that I have trouble with novels in translation. All too often I'm brought up short by a phrase or construction that simply sounds, well, "translationese".
APOC suffers from this more than most. It is a real struggle to translate the translation into something resembling "American". Once you do, if you can, it's a pretty taut little tale of crime, vengeance, and low-lives as they are lived. But for so brief a book, on so explosive a theme, to move as slowly as it does, weakens the effort considerably.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 2 reviews
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Slim Homage To Noir Never Finds Its Own Voice Oct. 27 2003
By A. Ross - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The French fascination with noir is demonstrated in this unsatisfying novella about a casino heist in an anonymous coastal city. The book starts with the release of the narrator's partner, Marin, from jail after three years. The two are part of a tiny "family" of gangsters with a bedridden old man as godfather. Led by Marin, the gang is just tough enough to control a small piece of the action, but are minor players in the underworld. Marin emerges from jail with a grand scheme to rob a casino in what will be "the absolute perfection of crime". The narrator and another gang member, Andrei, realize that the job is beyond them and it will all end badly, yet true to the noir form, they accept the inevitability of fate and go along with everything. It's all atmosphere and terse sentences as the group plans, and then in an odd shift, the narrator describes the actual heist in a reenacting for a judge. Clearly things didn't quite work out, and indeed, the "absolute perfection" disintegrated in in a shootout with the cops. The final part of the story shows the narrator emerging from jail after seven years to track down his betrayer and exact revenge. Even though all the elements are there: betrayal, death, a beautiful woman, a heist, revenge- it's never all that interesting. Perhaps because it's little more than homage to a hundred films and books we've already seen and read, and has no voice of its own. If you're really after French noir, I'd suggest finding one of Jean-Patrick Manchette's recently translated books from the '70s, like The Prone Gunman.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Noir that suffers from becoming Black March 15 2003
By S. Berner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I must confess that I have trouble with novels in translation. All too often I'm brought up short by a phrase or construction that simply sounds, well, "translationese".
APOC suffers from this more than most. It is a real struggle to translate the translation into something resembling "American". Once you do, if you can, it's a pretty taut little tale of crime, vengeance, and low-lives as they are lived. But for so brief a book, on so explosive a theme, to move as slowly as it does, weakens the effort considerably.

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