The Collected Works of Billy the Kid Paperback – Jan. 1 1997
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- ISBN-10 : 0887846084
- Paperback : 112 pages
- ISBN-13 : 978-0887846083
- Product Dimensions : 12.7 x 0.81 x 20.65 cm
- Publisher : Anansi (Jan. 1 1997)
- Item Weight : 136 g
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,395,012 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
The virtuosity of later Ondaatje characters Buddy Bolden, Temelcoff, Caravaggio, and Kip is here found in the "machine-like left hand" of the famous gunslinger Billy the Kid. As startlingly and intimately violent as Cormac McCarthy's Border Trilogy, Billy's fusion of poetry and prose creates a uniquely associative and perspectival voice: "The hands were cold as porcelain, one was silver old bone stripped oak white eastern cigarettes white sky the eye core of sun." The carousel of changing speakers offers a vividly fractured portrait of Billy, jumping from the distance of rumour and legend to the psychological intimacy of first-hand accounts.
On the lam in an abandoned barn, Billy convalesces to the hideous sound of rats gorging themselves on fermented grain. As Billy tells it, "[I] filled my gun and fired again and again into their slow wheel across the room at each boommm, and reloaded and fired again and again." In this unapologetically observant examination of the mechanization of both violence and art, Ondaatje, a confessed "child of the bijoux," simultaneously depicts and denounces the dangerously infectious glamour of graceful villains. --Darryl Whetter