Books read Fast One –

Let s face it they deserve itPretty much everyone in a noir story Or Film Is Driven film is driven greed lust ealousy or alienation a path that inevitably sucks them into a downward spiral from which they cannot escape They couldn t find the exit from their personal highway to hell if flashing neon lights pointed to a town named Hope It is their own lack of morality that blindly drives them to ruin That pretty much sums up Fast One If you read this novel

Don T Try To 
t try to out who s doing what to whom and why Just go along for the violent action packed ride It s a roller coaster to hell action packed ride It s a roller coaster to hell if you don t want to follow that route by all means skip it Paul Cain wrote many short stories but astonishingly only this one full length novel And what a novel Praised by contemporaries such as Raymond Chandler on completing it I can see why Rarely has a amoral bunch of characters been assembled together in work of fictionThe two main characters no doubt have SOME redeeming ualities but I can t for the life of me work out what they may beIf you re a fan of hard boiled noir crime fiction do yourself a favour and read thisFast One also appears in this Black Mask omnibus along with many of his short stories The Paul Cain Omnibus Every Crime Story and the Novel Fast One as Originally Published In addition seven of his Black Mask short stories are available in Seven Slayers Great cover Paul Cain is a bit of an enigma a terrific writer who published only one novel and some short stories before pretty much disappearing from print and from history At least easily uncovered history His one novel FAST ONE is as hardboiled as anything I ve ever read It reminds me a good deal of Dashiell Hammett s classic RED HARVEST inasmuch as it has a central figure pitting various groups of nasty folk against each other The one drawback I have with the book is that the plethora of characters are not well separated one from another descriptively and I had a hard time keeping them separate in my mind Only reaching midway through the book could I picture an individual whenever I saw a character s name This uibble aside FAST ONE is a dark and dirty crime novel with great writing and a compelling story If I m being completely honest my rating should be 25 Stars But this book is grim as FUCK and I love grim shit It also became very very clear while I was reading this book that the author Paul Cain didn t really give a shit if anyone liked his story And for those 2 reasons I upped my rating to 3 stars Truly I think the story of the mystery surrounding the author s life is a much fascinating story then the one in this book Not much is known about the author Paul Cain wasn t his real name His name was allegedly George Carrol Sims but even that might not be true The real life Paul Cain seems like a real life Tom Ripley Under the name Peter Ruric he worked as a screenwriter dated actresses and travelled the world He claimed to be from Chicago but who knows if that s true I want someone to write a book about him I would definitely read that Fast One is a grim and dark gangster story There are no good guys in this book everyone is a stone cold criminal with no feelings of guilt or remorse Its unapologetically violent and the author doesn t attempt in anyway shape or form to downplay the gritty grim nature of things If you love Raymond Chandler novels then give Fast One a chanc. 'Fast One' was originally a collection of stories featuring the gamblergunman Kells The tales ran in 'Black Mask' magazine from 1931 1932 This work has been occasionally republished most recently as a graphic novel by No Exit Press. ,
Of action Gambler tough guy gunman Kells refuses to be messed with by anyone Eve Wikipedia says Paul Cain is the pseudonym George Caryl Sims used He wrote the one novel Fast One 17 Black Mask short stories and the movie script for the Boris KarloffBela Lugosi horror film The Black Cat I ve seen The Black Cat and liked it The Fast One published in 1932 during the Depression and heyday of the celebrated armed bank robbers like Dillinger is regarded as a hardboilednoir classic I can see why Gerry Kells the protagonist arrives in LA and decides he wants to be the top dog OF THE CRIMINAL UNDERWORLD THERE ARE the criminal underworld There are of double crosses femme fatales and loose money The pace is relentless and I sometimes got a little lost in keeping up with Kells and all the characters he deals with There s not much character development and Kells remains something of an enigma He wants to grab the money but he can t bring himself to run with it There is always one complicatio Huh Well That was certainly a book This may be a case of me ust not getting it This is generally considered one of the great hard boiled books To me it was pulpbut not in the better sense of pulp This was far closer to Carroll John Daly than it was to Dashiell Hammett or Raymond Chandler The protagonist Gerry Kells has come to LA we know it s LA because a good 10% of the prose is devoted to telling us the directions and streets everyone drives and walks on from New York The local gangsters and political machines keep trying to lure Kells infor reasons At the same time they keep trying to double cross him even if he doesn t want to be involvedfor reasons Then when he decides to get involved various things happenfor reasons Part of the problem with discerning the motivations of the characters is that Cain spends pretty much no time developing any of them There the characters is that Cain spends pretty much no time developing any of them There no discernible personalities here There are names of characters who are about an inch deep in characterization One of the things here There are names of characters who are about an inch deep in characterization One of the things people tout about the book is that it ust keeps driving forward And I guess it does except when it s explaining how to drive from one side of LA to the other road by road But the drive doesn t add up to much And to the extent is adds to anything it s not much that we haven t seen done infinitely better in Red Harvest or in The Glass Key I wouldn t say that I m unhappy I read this I Investigating the Supernatural just have to say that I don t find it in any way special uintessential 1930 s Noir This is not Chandler or Hammett s hard boiled fiction No Sam Spade Continental OP or Philip Marlowe No tough but basically decent guy working the mean streets who is not himself mean Gerry Kells the protagonist is mean He s a gambler a gunman a crook He isn t hardboiled he s hard raw and rotten Moreover there are no good guys and galsust different categories of bad like the damned souls in the several levels of Dante s hellOtto Penzler made the distinction between Noir and the Hardboiled Detective novel in his excellent Huffington Post Article Noir Fiction is About Losers Not Private Eyes Here s a uote from Penzler that applies to Paul Cain s novel Look noir is about losers The characters in these existential nihilistic tales are doomed They may not die but they probably should as the life that awaits them is certain to be so ugly so lost and lonely that they d be better off ust curling up and getting it over with And. Uist she has no first name who rearrange the LA underworld and disappear in an explosive climax that matches their first appearance The pace is incredible and relentless and the complex plot with its twists and turns defies summary. This was pretty much a slog for me Yes it moves at a blistering pace but the author makes no attempt to connect the reader to the main character or any of the other cardboard characters In fact it was nearly impossible for me to differentiate between the myriad players here as they all talk in the same way with little or no physical description and when some minor character pops up 100 pages later I had no idea who he or she was You never really get into any of their heads so I cared about nothing that happened because there Were No Emotional Stakes no emotional stakes really needed a cast of characters list at the beginning which I see some other editions do have so I wouldn t have had to constantly flip back and forth but that wouldn t have saved Fast One from being a confusing mess20 Stars It s SENSATIONAL Swift and intense in the mode of the very best hard boiled crime tradition A rich discovery of a mostly unknown 1930s talent Cain clobbers He whales Takes names and kicks butt He goes off On a rampage Gotta love it His techniue is superb Only one down side as far as I can see The side effect of such a fast moving tale is I can t keep track of who s body that was on the floor a moment ago because another track of who s body that was on the floor a moment ago because another came in and disposed of it and now the hero is chasing someone we should know the name of but we don t But it is soooo worth it The mayhem in this little book very reminiscent of Dashiell Hammett s Red Harvest Much for today s writers to learn from here Much also which will appall and dismay today s mamby pamby warriors for social ustice Yes be warned there are slurs galore in this readSlim short page count but blazing hot read Pulse pounding action I very much recommend it Originally a collection of short stories in the Black Mask magazine Fast Fury reads as such It is sometimes difficult to link the chapters up and the story described on the back cover blurb as complex with its twists and turns defies summary uite no surprise thereGerry Kells comes to town with the intention of being the top man there are uite a number of floozies plenty of money floating about much of it seemingly for no apparent reason and there are numerous bumpings off many of them uite sudden and out of the blue The characters however are far from memorable those that do get bumped off being as memorable as those who continue through the book that is until they are also killedHard boiled it may be but I find it very difficult to agree with the strapline on the cover of the book which has Raymond Chandler proclaiming Some kind of highpoint in the ultra hardboiled manner I would hate to come across a low point in the genre What a disappointment Fast One by Paul Cain was recommended to me by GoodReads because I d read and enjoyed March Violets by Philip Kerr one of the splendidly subtle and addictive Bernie Gunther booksIn the introduction to Fast One Max D charn states that if there s a better hard boiled novel than Fast One out there he s still looking for it I rubbed my hands together with glee The Bernie Gunther novels are sublime and I usually enjoy noirish hard Gunther novels are sublime and I usually enjoy noirish hard novels I adore Raymond Chandler s books and Ted Get Carter Lewis s novels are also firm favouritesWhilst I can accept that Fast One might be a key work in the development of the genre given it pre dates Chandler s novels that is about all it has going for it Well that and plenty. The toughest tough guy and most brutal gangster story ever written Set in depression Los Angeles 'Fast One' has a surreal uality that is positively hypnotic It is the saga of a gunman gambler Gerry Kells and his dipso lover S Grand. ,

Fast One

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