King Suckerman Mass Market Paperback – Jul 6 1998
|New from||Used from|
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
D'origine grecque, Dimitri Karras est revendeur "d'herbe" dans un quartier pauvre de Washington. Accompagné de son ami, le Noir Marcus Clay, il passe se ravitailler chez un petit caïd italien, Eddie Marchetti. Celui-ci est en pleine transaction avec un quatuor de tueurs venus de Caroline pour acheter de la cocaïne. L'entretien tourne mal. Quelques coups sont échangés avec les sudistes et en représailles, Clay empoche le paquet de dollars qu'ils avaient versés à l'Italien. Les deux parties vont désormais s'affronter et tous les coups seront permis.
Sur cette trame de vengeance et de guerre mortelle (qui s'achève le 4 juillet, alors que la population fête joyeusement le bicentenaire de l'indépendance), Pelecanos reconstitue de façon efficace l'atmosphère d'un quartier de Washington avec moult détails sur la vie quotidienne des Noirs. Si les petits matchs de basket, la fumette et la soul music occupent une place importante dans leur existence, le cinéma est aussi très présent, plus particulièrement ce qu'on a appelé la "blaxploitation", cette série de films violents avec des "héros" noirs, qui débuta en 1971 avec Sweet Sweetback Baadass Song, écrit, réalisé et produit par Melvin Van Peebles. Premier volet d'une chronique sur la ville de Washington durant les années soixante-dix, King Suckerman est une reconstitution historique chaleureuse, écrite de façon béhavioriste, et qui permet de découvrir un milieu jusqu'alors bien négligé par le roman noir. On retrouve le héros du roman dans Un nommé Peter Karras, prix Cognac 2001 du roman noir étranger. --Claude Mesplède --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
Cheech and Chong meet Pulp Fiction in a retro novel of Seventies drug culture. Small-time pot dealer Dimitri Karras and record-store owner Marcus Clay stumble into the wrong warehouse looking for weed and pocket some hot cash in the bargain. They are pursued by a gang of trigger-crazed lowlifes more concerned with savoring the taste of Kools and death than recovering their money. Dimitri slowly begins to realize that he's wasted many years dealing to kids and getting high. He proves his desire for redemption to Marcus by participating in a rooftop showdown with the Wilton Cooper gang. Few other characters here show potential for growth or transformation, but Pelecanos (The Big Blowdown, LJ 4/15/96) has an ear for the jivey talk of the era. This noir thriller may find a limited audience with baby boomers or fans of the author's well-received Nick Stefanos series.?Susan A. Zappia, Maricopa Cty. Lib. Dist., Phoenix
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
All of this lightly covers some heavier issues underneath the surface of King Suckerman; chiefly race, drugs, and violence in our nation's capitol. Marcus Clay is a black DC record store owner (Real Right Records) and Demitri Karras is a young white man with no clear direction in his life. The two play ball together on DC's famed city courts, and when a simple drug deal draws Clay into pulling a gun on a local dealer, Karras and Clay become the subject of the dealer's (and some out of town boys') revenge.
The novel follows a pretty tight storyline from there with the redneck goons tracking down Karras and Clay, ultimately leading to the novel's The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly style climax on a DC bicentenial July 4th with fireworks exploding in the background!
As with other Pelecanos novels (Right as Rain, Shame the Devil, Soul Circus, The Sweet Forever), King Suckerman is a deeply moral novel where redemption and loyalty rises above ignorance and hatred. There is an interesting passage in Suckerman where Karras finds out that a young kid he's sold some dope to has died in an automobile accident, and for a time he seems torn, trying to choose between right and wrong, friendship and honor.Read more ›
In 'King Suckerman' the author spends a lot of time, arguably too much time, on waltzing through 1970s memory lane. Blaxploitation flicks and the music of the times dominate the book. Yes, there are some nasty dudes in this book, lots of drug dealing, but before long we realize the author isn't going to deliver anything special. George Pelacanos has done much better ('Shame the Devil', 'Right as Rain').
Bottom line: the author seems to be into more of a nostalgia trip rather than writing a crime novel. But for those craving a taste of pre-disco 1970s ambiance this book is "really baaad".
why three stars? mostly because pelecanos relies on cheap morality toward the end. the moral revelations, or maybe evolutions, seem like jokes. they're just so obvious and unimaginative. i don't want to post a spoiler, but the body count at the end is painfully predictable.
on the plus side, pelecanos has a great gift for dialogue and characterization. while it's often more entertaining to watch bad guys develop, the ambiguity of the characters early on keeps you interested in the entire cast. everything is tight until the last fifth or so. at that point the good guys arc and it seems canned and facile.
as you can see, the crude moralizing bothered me, but that doesn't mean that i wouldn't recommend the book. i thoroughly enjoyed it overall and look forward to more of pelecanos' work.
Cheech and Chong because everyone seems to be stoned, getting stoned or looking to get stoned. As a result, I just couldn't take the characters all that seriously, even those with murderous intent. Reservoir Dogs because, at times, the violence was very graphic, the bad guys took no prisoners and the undercurrent of menace was constant.
It's an unusual book in that there really is no obvious lead character. Dimitri Karras is the nearest thing to the lead. He is a deadbeat who gets by dealing pot and playing pickup basketball games.
The pace is frenetic, there's definitely never a dull moment, mayhem abounds and there's a nice little cameo by Nick Stefanos for all the insiders who have read "Nick's Trip". I enjoyed it, it was very entertaining.
Most recent customer reviews
This book did little for me. At times, it read like nothing more than a recount of 1970's brand names and music trivia. Read morePublished on Jan. 9 2003
I am sorry. Have read several books by Pelecanos ant this is the only one I have not liked. I quit reading after 108 pages. To much reference to songs and movies. Read morePublished on Sept. 17 2002 by Mac Blair
I've read most of Pelecanos' work and, in my opinion, King Suckerman would rank as one of his weaker efforts. Read morePublished on Sept. 1 2002 by brazos49
Why do Americans think violence is so cool? I don't get it...
I love crime novels. Always have. I was weaned on Chandler and Hammett and James M. Cain and Jim Thompson. Read more
Alright I am a Pelecanos junkie; I've read most of his novels and this one is still my favorite. While D.C. Read morePublished on June 3 2002 by D. A. Douglas
A crime novel with a "moral to the story"; Dmitri Karras, a pot-smoking, dope-selling, basketball-playing, fun-loving guy with no goals or direction. Read morePublished on Jan. 28 2002 by Tim Smith
I loved this book, great thriller, good action, killer dialogue. But, the couple of heroes at the heart of King Suckerman are loathsome, to say the least. All macho, all the time? Read morePublished on May 29 2001 by Carlos I. Camacho González
This was my first book by this author, and I don't think I want to read another. I like the genre of "hard-boiled" detective novels, but Pelecanos obviously thinks... Read morePublished on May 14 2001