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Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up? 
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Post Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
I've always loved his books, especially the Dave Robicheaux series. His novel of a couple of years ago "Wayfaring Stranger" was the best one of his works I've read. However, "House Of The Rising Sun" issued in early 2016 was a big disappointment. His latest novel was just gibberish IMO. Mr. Burke is 81 now and it looks like time has caught up with him.

James Michener was able to write terrific novels in his late '80s and Wilbur Smith still puts out good work at an advanced age.

I hope this is a temporary glitch in Mr. Burke's stellar career because I certainly like to see more work from hin equal to what he has done in the past.



Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:33 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Old Reb wrote:
I've always loved his books, especially the Dave Robicheaux series. His novel of a couple of years ago "Wayfaring Stranger" was the best one of his works I've read. However, "House Of The Rising Sun" issued in early 2016 was a big disappointment. His latest novel was just gibberish IMO. Mr. Burke is 81 now and it looks like time has caught up with him.

James Michener was able to write terrific novels in his late '80s and Wilbur Smith still puts out good work at an advanced age.

I hope this is a temporary glitch in Mr. Burke's stellar career because I certainly like to see more work from hin equal to what he has done in the past.



I am a HUGE JLB fan. Indeed, he is my favorite American novelist. And I agree with the old review from the newspaper Denver Post which called him "America's finest novelist."

I also thought "Wayfaring Stranger" was one of his strongest works. As were "Creole Belle" and "Feast Day of Fools" and "The Tin Roof Blowdown."

I must admit I miss his Robicheaux books, and hope he returns to them soon. In fact, I just remembered that I heard he DOES have a Robicheaux novel coming out next year, entitled, well, "Robicheaux." LOL

I for one hope he is far from finished writing and has many more books to come. Nobody can write believable and evil or just humanly-flawed characters like JLB. His descriptions of the settings and especially of nature are nonpareil. His ear for dialogue is the best since Elmore Leonard.

The ONE aspect of his past, oh, maybe 3-4 novels that I AM tiring of, however, is his continual disparaging and criticism of the wealthy families and people in America. JLB would have you believe they are ALL, to a man, corrupt, greedy, heartless exploiters or the lower classes. JLB has gotten to sort of an old curmudgeon in this regard, and it is tiring and a bit boring. He is not alone of course, as I have seen other authors do this late in their careers. Especially after they have made a shit-pile of money! LOL



Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:22 am
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
I'm sure JLB will get back in the game. I'm really looking forward to another Dave Robicheaux book as well as more of the Holland series. I really relate to his books as I grew up in Houston and spent a lot of time in East Texas and Louisiana before we moved to Austin in 1992.

You might also want to try some of the Bernie Gunther novels by Philip Kerr. Bernie is kind of like a Teutonic Dave Robicheaux. He is an anti-Nazi ex Berlin police detective, whose adventures take him through Germany, Russia, the Balkans and South America after the war. Bernie has a very wry sense of humor and I think you might want to try a novel or two about him.



Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:50 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Old Reb wrote:
I'm sure JLB will get back in the game. I'm really looking forward to another Dave Robicheaux book as well as more of the Holland series. I really relate to his books as I grew up in Houston and spent a lot of time in East Texas and Louisiana before we moved to Austin in 1992.

You might also want to try some of the Bernie Gunther novels by Philip Kerr. Bernie is kind of like a Teutonic Dave Robicheaux. He is an anti-Nazi ex Berlin police detective, whose adventures take him through Germany, Russia, the Balkans and South America after the war. Bernie has a very wry sense of humor and I think you might want to try a novel or two about him.



And I have a suggestion for you...since you like the Robicheaux books. You might want to try Jo Nesbo with his Harry Hole (pronounced "HU-lay") series. Hole is much like a Norwegian Robicheaux. He works for the Oslo PD. Like Dave he is somewhat of a rogue..a maverick..with lots of enemies. Unlike Dave, Harry is NOT in recovery but is a practicing alcoholic. The book "The Snowman" from this series was recently made into a move. (I heard it was terrible, btw.) But the book was great. Almost read like a horror novel...with the Snowman being the nickname for a serial killer that Hole is hunting. (the killer leaves snowmen built in the yards of his victims, with a personal item from the victim as part of the snowman. brr!) LOL



Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:00 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Yeah I have to admit the last couple of JLB books I've really not enjoyed at all.

Robicheaux comes out on January 2nd of next year. Already have it pre-ordered and I think this is my "do or die" book in terms of Burke. I'm hoping he can recapture the magic but if not - well it's been a great ride but can't see me purchasing anymore.



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Wed Dec 20, 2017 8:08 am
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
EmptyBoxFrank wrote:
Yeah I have to admit the last couple of JLB books I've really not enjoyed at all.

Robicheaux comes out on January 2nd of next year. Already have it pre-ordered and I think this is my "do or die" book in terms of Burke. I'm hoping he can recapture the magic but if not - well it's been a great ride but can't see me purchasing anymore.



Wow...thanks for the heads-up on Robicheaux, Frank. I will order it on Amazon right now. I agree about how it could equate to being a "do or die" novel for the series. Then again. I think it very well could be the LAST installment of the series. If memory serves, I believe I read about how it is going to be a sort of prequel. At least part of it. And anyway, how much longer could Clete and Dave go on with their daring lifestyle? Ya gotta remember that these cats have gotta be in their mid-70s now. I recall that Dave mentioned himself being 50 when Black Cherry Blues came out. (The first book in the series I read.) Well, that was, what? In 1992 or so? So.....25 years ago.
And I always had a hunch that Clete would be killed in the last book. Just my personal guess, though.
Thanks!!



Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:18 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Slaverz_Bay, I bought of the Harry Hole books "The Leopard" today at one of the library branches and will give it a try-looks pretty interesting. Skimming through it, looks like Harry is Bernie Gunther's brother!



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Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:36 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Old Reb wrote:
Slaverz_Bay, I bought of the Harry Hole books "The Leopard" today at one of the library branches and will give it a try-looks pretty interesting. Skimming through it, looks like Harry is Bernie Gunther's brother!


Way to go...Reb. Let me know how you like "The Leopard." If you enjoy it...you might want to try "The Bat" and then save Snowman for later. sb



Thu Dec 21, 2017 10:27 pm
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Post Re: Is it time for James Lee Burke to hang it up?
Has anybody read "Robicheaux" yet? I'm interested to see if JLB got back in the groove with this one!



Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:29 pm
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