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The Friends of Eddie Coyle: A Novel Paperback – April 27, 2010
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“Rings true as a police siren.” ―The Boston Globe
“The best crime novel ever written--makes The Maltese Falcon read like Nancy Drew.” ―Elmore Leonard
“Chilling . . . The most penetrating glimpse yet into what seems the real world of crime. . . . Positively reeking with authenticity.” ―The New York Times Book Review
“Truly a bravura performance. Higgins is a master of colorful street language heard around Boston. Throughout the novel, without quaintness or self-parody, he is able to sustain long arias of criminal shoptalk. . . . A sophisticated thriller.” ―Time
“First-rate, absolutely convincing, enormously readable.” ―The Christian Science Monitor
“Simultaneously a brilliant thriller and a cold and convincing business prospectus of felony--a profession that traps both sides, gunmen and policemen, into ceaseless compulsory degardations.” ―The New Yorker
“The most powerful and frightening crime novel that I have read this year. It will be remembered long after the year is over, as marking the debut of a fine original talent.” ―Ross Macdonald
“The first thing to know about George V. Higgins' The Friends of Eddie Coyle is that it directly entered the crime-fiction canon upon its 1970 publication. The second thing to know is that it holds up as both a writer's-writer thriller and as popular pulp, with Dennis Lehane introducing Picador's new 40th-anniversary reissue of the novel by heralding it as ‘the game-changing crime novel of the last fifty years'--a moderate claim compared to that of Elmore Leonard, who hails it as the best crime novel period.” ―Troy Patterson, SLATE
“Weighed and calibrated like the barrel of a pistol. The fact that he's writing about crooks is crucial in some ways, incidental in others. The real subjects here are life's futility and its bleak humor… Elmore Leonard learned from this novel, likewise David Mamet and of course Quentin Tarantino, who saw the narrative virtue in marrying violence to comedies of manners…. Higgins took the tough-guy novel into areas of demented anthropology and re-created a genre.” ―Richard Rayner, Los Angeles Times
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Top Customer Reviews
The story is very simple, the dialog is incredibly lifelike and readable. The characters are very real and the story is believable. Its not really a mystery as much as it is a story about some criminals and what they think and feel.
Warning, though. Don't buy this if you like the 'high concept' plots of Grisham and Patterson. This is a very simple story about real people and real criminals. If you're an aspiring writer of crime fiction, definitely check it out especially the dialog.
The only way Eddie can avoid prison is to trade information & he's soon caught in between the Feds, his gun dealer & the Mob. George V. Higgin's debut novel (now almost thirty years old) is notable for it's streetwise dialogue and the nearly Shakespearean sense of tragedy (well, at least, Billy "Sonnets" Shakespeare) that surrounds Eddie.
This book is still a bleak, fascinating read.
I had also been searching for the film for years (it was not available on VHS or DVD) but thanks to Amazon Unbox, I finally got a chance to see this classic with Robert Mitchum. Highly recommend!!!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Remarkable dialog...I have no idea how this guy came up with the dialog!Published 15 days ago by Amazon User #1
Too many people get lost along the way with a good crime novel is. Or even just a crime story in general. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Bobby Lux
I've viewed the movie on several occasions...terrific movie....however the book really goes into details of the characters and the story itself... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Normand Richard
I heard that this was an inspiration for Elmore Leonard and that genre of crime writing, and wanted to check it out. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Guido Paolano
I read that this was a great book, but I do not get it. As previously noted, the dialogue is good. I can imagine people in these situations actually talking this way. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Matthew K. Steele
It has a gritty authentic feel both in dialogue(which is most of it) and locale description. It doesn't lead you by the nose, it gives you information and lets you discover what is... Read morePublished 3 months ago by T. OCONNELL
Got this after watching the final episode of Justified. Raylan Givens gives a well worn copy to Tim Gutterson (sniper agent) on his way out the door. I just had to get it. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Redbeard