Now the basis of the new series on SundanceTV.
Only Hap and Leonard would catch a cold case with hot cars, hot women, and ugly skinheads.
The story starts simply enough when Hap, a former '60s activist and self-proclaimed white trash rebel, and Leonard, a tough black, gay Vietnam vet and Republican with an addiction to Dr. Pepper, are working a freelance surveillance job in East Texas. The uneventful stakeout is coming to an end when the pair witness a man abusing his dog. Leonard takes matters into his own fists, and now the bruised dog abuser wants to press charges.
One week later, a woman named Lilly Buckner drops by their new PI office with a proposition: Find her missing granddaughter, or she'll turn in a video of Leonard beating the dog abuser. The pair agrees to take on the cold case and soon discover that the used car dealership where her granddaughter worked is actually a front for a prostitution ring. The mystery of her disappearance only deepens from there.
Filled with Lansdale's trademark whip-smart dialogue, relentless pacing, and unorthodox characters, Honky Tonk Samurai is a rambunctious thrill ride by one hell of a writer.
"Employing an East Texas drawl, narrator Christopher Grant ably gives voice to the mismatched investigators and their longtime friends and allies, along with ne'er-do-wells.... Grant's laconic delivery helps provide a Dust Bowl feel to this suspenseful production, right through its twist of an ending." (AudioFile)
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The tone it was written in. It was somehow off-hand and lazy and nobody really came across as likable. The story, while on the outset interesting, fell flat and I wasn't rooting for anyone. Hap and Leonard appeared to be, if anything, tired and off their game. The prose felt forced and where I used to laugh or at least chuckle a book or two ago, I could only shake my head this time.
It was okay. Phil Gigante would have been my preference, as others already noted, but Grant isn't so bad either.
Hap and Leonard surely are the golden goose for Lansdale, and he certainly deserves his success. This book just felt like fan-service to me and lazily done at that. Too bad. Question in general: why isn't there an audio-book of the full-length book before that, Devil Red?