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Cruisers: A Novel Paperback – July 12, 2005
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Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
It is taut, sharp, to the point and there are no heroes, flawed or otherwise; the "good" guys and the "bad" guys are ordinary people whose personalities and lives have taken them in a certain direction and, at the end of the day, they find they have little control over their destinies.
Goodbye plodding beer-drinking, crossword-solving detectives like Rankin's Rebus, Rendell's Wexford and Dexter's Morse and welcome Russell Boyd, a lowly police trooper with troubled memories of his childhood, who spends the night hours alone patrolling the dark, wintry highways of Vermont where each of the vehicles whizzing by is a potential menace.
Every time Boyd pulls up a car for speeding, he is aware that he faces the possibility of a gun being stuck in his face and fired.
The title "Cruisers" refers to the police patrol cars and much of the actions centers on cars and the fascination they have for Americans, their speed and what they represent as a means of escape and sexual attraction.
The story follows a few months in the unhappy lives of Robb and the other main character, Frank Kohler, a loner and misfit.
Both are all-American males who love guns, cars and women in that order.
Both are trying to come to terms with a new life: Robb with a schoolteacher he has just met and Kohler with a mail order bride from Russia who has just been delivered.
All the characters' paths mingle and intermingle like a Thomas Hardy story, with a similar dark cloud hanging over everything they do, and the reader knows the ending will be explosive.
The style is low key and the dramatic ending is almost underwritten, with a similarly understated follow-up.
This book is crying out to be made into a decent film.
Well! Reading this novel was a brand new experience!
The story is gripping, the characters are "real", and my soul just "resonated" to the "words"....the duality of our humaness and lives, the dark and the light, the mundane and the violence, the confusion and the clarity.
Never have I read anything like this before.
I am a new Craig Nova fan.
the killer seems to have a similar dispositon, although his troubles come from a really bad childhood. there's no way to know why his wife and russell's girlfriend are so moody. kohler's wife clearly has good reason, but it's not revealed.
This reminds me of a dark thriller movie, maybe something like insomnia. much of the writing seems to be quite deep, but most of it is incomprehensible. craig nova has a good command of the language, but i'm not sure it's possible to really enjoy this book.
The most important thing about any novel (in my opinion) is having characters you can sink your teeth into. Characters who jump to life, right off the page.
This book completely lacks that. Never have I cared LESS for main characters in a book as I did with Russel Boyd and Frank Kohler.
Russel is a State Trooper. Brooding with very little to say.
Frank Kohler is a computer repairman more or less who comes from a horrible childhood and is looking for love.
Both characters are extremely depressing to read. The constant back and forth about how they're feeling at any given moment (and beleive me, not a sentence goes by where Nova doesn't wax poetic about how each character feels about the trees outside, the color of the snow, the sound of a coffee maker, etc, etc) is confusing and totally takes you out of the story.
And there's really not much of a story. Kohler's the 'bad guy', Boyd's the 'good guy', their paths meet several times, an event happens, end of story.
This book is almost written as if it's two different stories. One about Boyd and his relationship and how his job affects that, and the other about Kohler's demons and his quest for love (or just companionship as the case may be). The stories intertwine and come to a definite, if not anticlimactic, conclusion but each separate story just isn't that interesting.
Another problem I had with the book was the dialogue, or shoud I say lack thereof.Read more ›