Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Chasing Darkness by Robert Crais

I was able to steal 10 minutes here and there, and was able to finish Elvis Cole's latest adventure. This is the best Cole in years (The Watchman, technically a Joe Pike novel, doesn't count).

Pike is Pike (Hawk to the 3rd power); Elvis is still the less-funny, more-broody of the later novels; the nameless cat is still the nameless cat, and the regular supporting cast is at least mentioned.

The status remains quo with Elvis' relationships with Carol and Lucy. Elvis won't let go of Lucy, who is trying to distance herself from him (with a degree of success). Carol's still hung up on Elvis, but seems in more control of her emotions. I've liked Starkey in every one of her appearances, this time, perhaps more than others.

Crais was near the top of his game when it came to plotting--I suspected the culprit early on, but it was still well plotted. What appealed to me most about this was that what drew Elvis into the case wasn't something in his personal history, a friend's past, Pike's past, etc. Yes, there was a historical draw--but it was professional, making this a case of Elvis finishing a job, not exploring what made him who he is today, etc.

The ending was also pleasantly small. There was no apocalyptic battle between Elvis, Pike and several gunmen, or whatever. A simple, solid resolution. Yes, something that resonated, something that read well and contained the requisite suspense...just not an 'end of the world' scenario.

Sadly, have to wait another year for the next installment--but am sure it'll be worth it.