Thursday, September 23, 2010

Book Review: W. R. Burnett, The Silver Eagle (1931)

The Silver Eagle is the follow-up to W. R. Burnett's groundbreaking gangster-novel debut, Little Caesar (1929). Businessman Frank Harworth is just smart enough, just persistent enough, and just lucky enough to have earned a place among the nouveau riche of late 1920s Chicago, but he isn't satisfied. Frank wants to be accepted by the old(er) money of the city, and he wants to make even more money himself. The former desire leads to romantic entanglements; the latter, to mob entanglements. Frank's character is sympathetic but not sufficiently complex to sustain much interest. Grade: C

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