Sunday, May 30, 2010

Book Review: "Road Dogs" by Elmore Leonard

Elmore Leonard is one of those authors, like Stephen King, John Grisham, Joyce Carol Oates or Jeffery Deaver, whose ability to churn out novels on a regular basis is truly amazing. Sometimes I can barely muster the creativity for a blog post, and they're turning out novel after novel.

Leonard's latest brings together characters from three previous books: Jack Foley (George Clooney's character) from Out of Sight, Cundo Rey from La Brava and Dawn Navarro from Riding the Rap. Foley and Rey meet in prison and become "road dogs," trusted jailhouse comrades watching each other's back. Out of friendship, Cundo pays his attorney to get Foley's sentence reduced from 30 years to 3 months, and, upon Foley's release, asks him to keep an eye on Dawn Navarro, the psychic who is Cundo's common-law wife. Dawn, of course, has other plans for Foley. From that moment on, the twists come so fast and furious, at times you can't quite tell who's doing what to whom and why...and then Cundo is released earlier than expected.

When this book was on, it was great; sadly, though, it isn't always firing on all cylinders. And while Foley and Dawn's characters are tremendously layered, I felt as if many of the supporting characters, including Cundo and Foley's FBI nemesis, Lou Adams, were a little more stereotypical. But Leonard's dialogue and the twists he throws in this novel are still worth your time.

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