“The Double follows the story of Spero Lucas”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
As soon as I start reading another George Pelecanos novel I remember what I don’t like about his writing. Then, 150 pages later, after staying up much later than I meant to, I forget that and remember what I love about his books.
Pelecanos even sets his stylistic stall our here. Describing some books his hero is leaving at a hospital, he writes: “…like most people, the recovering veterans enjoyed a good story told with clean, efficient writing, a plot involving a problem to be solved or surmounted, and everyday characters the reader could relate to.”
It’s almost a manifestor, and that’s exactly what you get. My reservations about Pelecanos are about that “efficiency”. Sometimes it’s just too damned efficient. The lists of brand names, the police-like descriptions of characters, places and even action, the quick psychological sketches. It can feel a bit cold and lacking in life.