NOW'S THE TIME by John Harvey


The Complete Resnick Short Stories
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paper 1-871033-53-5 Fans mourning the news that Last Rites (p. 414) is the last of Harvey's ten peerless novels about Nottingham's Inspector Charlie Resnick have won at least a modest reprieve in these eleven stories, two never before published. Harvey's already won widespread praise for his gritty urban backgrounds, his nice attention to the limits of the law, and his nuanced portraits of no-nonsense, jazz-and-cat-loving Resnick and his mates. The most welcome news here is how sensitive he can be to the differences among the dozens of different crooks who cross Charlie's path, from smirking, irredeemable Nicky Snape in "Dexterity" to Grabianski, the burglar who falls for a nun in "Bird of Paradise," to Ray-o Cooke, the slaughterhouse worker who drags his pathetic way through four stories ("She Rote," "Confirmation," "Work," "Stupendous") in between the two novels (Cutting Edge, Last Rites) he appears in. As his refreshingly candid introduction implies, Harvey's as capable of routine work as the next writer, but even the most pro forma items here, the anecdotal "Cool Blues" and "Slow Burn," the surprisingly one-note tone poem to arson, are a-glint with off-speed dialogue and lowlifes you've never imagined before.

Pub Date: Sept. 6th, 1999
ISBN: 1-871033-53-5
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Slow Dancer--dist. by Dufour