When three small-time country gangsters break out of jail, they return to the only life they know - small-town bank robbing. When Bowie, the youngest of them, falls in love with Keechie, one of the older gangster's cousins, it becomes a classic tale of love with nowhere to hide and no hope of reprieve.
"One of the great forgotten novels of the '30s." (Raymond Chandler)
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The start of the Noir genre
Absolutely. The narration brought the story to life. It was much easier to listen to than it would have been to read.
It’s the late 1930’s – the depression has hit America full bore. Banks are failing, people are losing their life savings and the bankers seem to have enough money to keep their extravagant lifestyles.
Thieves Like Us was written by Edward Anderson, published in 1937, and represents the start of the “Noir” genre, popularized by writers like Hammett and Chandler. The story focuses on three criminals who escape from an Oklahoma prison and revert to the one thing that they know well – robbing banks. The language that Anderson uses is vivid; representative of the pulp fiction of the time. He doesn’t pull punches with the dialog, racial interaction is described as it was in the 1930’s in the south, and violence is treated matter-of-factly, neither sectionalizing it, nor downplaying it. This is a classic noir novel, and to some it may feel dated, but it is very representative of the style of pulp fiction of that time, but more important, it captures the spirit of how people lived through that time.
Steve Scherf does a great job reading this. As usual, he makes it easy to distinguish the characters and nails the pace and timing perfectly. To be honest, I’m not sure I’d have enjoyed the book if I was reading it – Scherf’s narration really made this a delight to listen to.
An engaging, captivating listening experience!
Yes, to further explore the logic of the thieves and their interpersonal relationships.
I enjoyed the relationships between the crooks and how Steve Scherf was able to accurately portray each character so that I could be in the scene with them ...robbing banks, running from the law, telling jokes! Each character's voice had a unique tone and inflection; so well delivered that it was easy to detect who was speaking. Although the plot was very familiar, Steve was able to bring a fresh and natural approach to the voices which made me eager to listen whenever I could!
Mobley, because I could visualize his face even his clothes and style of walking At times I liked him and then he would perform a despicable act so I'd feel a strong dislike. I liked how the excellent depiction of Mobley could swing my emotions.
Ever loyal, never without heart
I look forward to acquiring more of Steve Scherf's audiobooks to enjoy during the next long Alberta winter!