Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Book Note: Lawrence Block, Afterthoughts (2011)

Afterthoughts collects the many afterwords that Lawrence Block has written mostly for his out-of-print works that have become available as ebooks. Not surprisingly, given Block’s recent popularity, these works skew toward the beginning of his career. Because Block chose not to take the time to turn Afterthoughts into a coherent memoir, he offers it for 99 cents and makes no bones about what it is: an extended advertisment for his backlist. In return for that bargain price, you are not allowed to complain that you hear certain stories over and over again, sometimes verbatim, as they are repeated in the afterwords to different novels from the same time period. Everything is informal and chatty and reads quickly, and you will be consistently entertained (if you can put up with the repetition). On top of that, the book serves Block’s stated purpose well: You will likely finish Afterthoughts with a good idea of which Block ebooks you want to buy.

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