BOOK & BLOG
February 18, 2007
Book of the Week: THE BLADE ITSELF by Marcus Sakey
Marcus Sakeys THE BLADE ITSELF has gotten such good buzz in the mystery community that I had to check it out myself. I had the pleasure of meeting Marcus at LOVE IS MURDER, the Chicago convention I attended early this month. He seems like a nice guy, and I hoped his book lived up to its word-of-mouth recommendations.
It does. Set in Chicago, the book deals with what happens to Danny after his old pal Evan gets paroled. Danny has reformed since his days on the street with Evan. Evans taken the fall for a burglary they both committed, and Danny, though feeling guilty, also feels not-so-bad about that, since Evan was the one who brought a gun and shot the store owner. During the years Evans been in prison, Danny has gone straight. Hes become a construction foreman, hes got a committed relationship with Karen, and they live in a decent apartment among decent people.
Evan has no intention of going straight, from the moment he hits the streets. He begins to menace Danny, reminding Danny in subtle and not so subtle ways that Danny owes him. Their mutual friend Patrick finds out that Evan is trying to draw Danny back into the criminal life, and Patrick decides to kill Evan first to save his friend. But Evans spent his years in prison getting stronger and harder, and he kills Patrick first. Then Evan stages an incident with Karen so Danny will know how easily she can be hurt.
THE BLADE ITSELF is as cinematic as a novel can be. Its easy to see Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Ryan Phillippe in the three main male roles, with maybe Maria Bello as Karen. Just in case this doesnt get made into a movie, enjoy the book experience. The suspense is incredible.
Sometimes its hard to decide what to write for this space. I never know what people want to hear. I just sit at the keyboard until a topic occurs to me. The past week, my lifes been such a tangle of little issues there hasnt been a main theme.
My husbands been in a play, and the rehearsals have eaten up every evening for literally months. Theres one more performance, and then hell be a civilian again. Its been fun seeing him in a different light, but itll be great to have our lives on a less complicated schedule.
Im the senior warden at our church this year, and we dont have a regular priest. I have to help arrange for a priest to come from time to time so we can have communion. Also, our Lenten Soup Luncheons are about to begin. Every Wednesday in Lent, we serve soup to whoever comes to the church, in exchange for a donation. This is our big church fundraiser, and almost all the proceeds go to charity. This is five weeks of hard work, believe me, and our church is not large, so everyone has to work.
And the Softball Booster Club is having its big fundraiser next week. So we have to sell tickets for that, try to increase everyones awareness that we actually HAVE a softball team, and then work that night serving a fish dinner to whomever comes to the restaurant. Somehow, Im president.
Ill be glad when these events are over and I can crawl back into my shell. Theres a reason I work by myself. I love to see people, interact with people, and help out from time to time. But this is a big dose of togetherness all in one month, for someone who usually doesnt talk to more than ten people in a week.
Next year, Im not going to be president of anything. And if I can swing it, I wont belong to anything -- or at the most, one organization. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
© 2009 Charlaine Harris