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Nobody Move

by

Nobody Move Cover

ISBN13: 9780312429614
ISBN10: 0312429614
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

 

Staff Pick

Denis Johnson never ceases to amaze, going from a National Book Award to this quick and dirty pulp novel — a transition that would seem strained if not for the evident ease with which he executes this diction switch. Must be read to be believed.
Recommended by Nathan W., Powells.com

Jimmy Luntz has a knack for survival, if not for much else. Despite the trouble his gambler's instincts keep getting him into, he's a character with heart — which keeps getting in the way when it's time to pull the trigger. A smokin' good story.
Recommended by Kelly L., Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Jimmy Luntz is an innocent man, more or less. He's just leaving a barbershop chorus contest in Bakersfield, California, thinking about placing a few bets at the track, when he gets picked up by a thug named Gambol and his life takes a calamitous turn. Turns out Jimmy owes Gambol's boss significant money, and Gambol's been known to do serious harm to his charges. Soon enough a gun comes out, and Jimmy's on the run. While in hiding he meets up with a vengeful, often-drunk bombshell named Anita, and the two of them go on the lam together, attracting every kind of trouble.

From the National Book Award-winning, bestselling author of Tree of Smoke comes a provocative thriller set in the American West. Nobody Move, which first appeared in the pages of Playboy, is the story of an assortment of lowlifes in Bakersfield, California, and their cat-and-mouse game over $2.3 million.

Review:

"So noir it's almost pitch-black, [Nobody Move] concerns a lovable loser named Luntz — barbershop-chorus member, Hawaiian-shirt wearer, and inveterate gambler — who is in debt to an underworld bad guy....with wisecrack-laden dialogue and evenly dispersed cliffhangers that are a legacy of the work's genesis as a serialization in Playboy. But there are also moments of arresting lyrical beauty — a river's swollen surface under a crescent moon 'resembled the unquiet belly of a living thing you could step onto and walk across.'" The New Yorker

Review:

"A sly take on California crime noir fiction." Bob Hoover, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Review:

"All of its symbols — if you want to take a shot at finding deeper meaning — are in your face and seem to be saying, at least to me, that for the most part, most of us live within the status quo, one way or another, just trying to locate the next move." The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"Reads like a Coen brothers movie waiting to happen, a cross between Blood Simple and No Country for Old Men." The Miami Herald

Review:

"Displays a wicked sense of fun." Sarah Weinman, The Washington Post

Review:

"The God I want to believe in has a voice and a sense of humor like Denis Johnson's." Jonathan Franzen

Synopsis:

Touched by echoes of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett, Nobody Move is at once an homage to and a variation on literary form. It salutes one of our most enduring and popular genres — the American crime novel — but with a grisly humor and outrageousness that are Denis Johnson's own. Sexy, suspenseful, and above all entertaining, Nobody Move shows one of our greatest novelists at his versatile best.

Synopsis:

Jimmy Luntz is an innocent man, more or less. He's just leaving a barbershop chorus contest in Bakersfield, California, thinking about placing a few bets at the track, when he gets picked up by a thug named Gambol and his life takes a calamitous turn. Turns out Jimmy owes Gambol's boss significant money, and Gambol's been known to do serious harm to his charges. Soon enough a gun comes out, and Jimmy's on the run. While in hiding he meets up with a vengeful, often-drunk bombshell named Anita, and the two of them go on the lam together, attracting every kind of trouble.

The latest from National Book Award-winning author Denis Johnson, Nobody Move "does exactly what noir should do--propel the reader downhill, with its cast of losers, louts and toughs as they cheat, shoot, and exploit one another into fast-talking oblivion" (Jess Walker, The Boston Globe).

Denis Johnson is the author of six novels, three collections of poetry, and one book of reportage. His novel Tree of Smoke was the 2007 winner of the National Book Award. He lives in northern Idaho.

From the National Book Award–winning, bestselling author of Tree of Smoke comes a provocative thriller set in the American West. Nobody Move, which first appeared in the pages of Playboy, is the story of an assortment of lowlifes in Bakersfield, California, and their cat-and-mouse game over $2.3 million. Touched by echoes of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett, Nobody Move is at once an homage to and a variation on literary form. It salutes one of our most enduring and popular genresthe American crime novelbut with a grisly humor and outrageousness that are Denis Johnsons own. Sexy, suspenseful, and above all entertaining, Nobody Move shows one of our greatest novelists at his versatile best.

"Johnson is one of the last of the hard-core American realist writers, workingin his own wayalong a line that might be charted from Melville and Stephen Crane, with a detour through Flannery OConnor and Don DeLillo. He routinely explores the nature of crimeall his novels have it in one form or an­otherin relation to the nature of grace (yes, grace) and the wider historical and cosmic order . . . Johnson is a great writer, and even a casual entertainment, written well, has meaning. If Tree of Smokeintricately plotted, embracing the entire Vietnam era and bringing it up alongside the war in Iraqwas a huge piece of work, a Guernica of sorts, then Nobody Move is a Warhol soup can, a flinty, bright piece of pop art meant to be instantly understood and enjoyed."David Means, The New York Times Book Review
"Hot on the heels of his National Book Award-winning novel, Tree of Smoke, Denis Johnsonby far one of our best writershas written what might seem like a side step: a short, tight crime noir, produced under deadline as a serial for Playboy magazine. Like so many contemporary crime narratives (Pulp Fiction comes instantly to mind), Johnsons new novel, Nobody Move, keeps a narrow focus, homing in on the plight of Jimmy Luntz, a barbershop chorus singer, compulsive gambler and Steve Buscemi type who owes money to a guy named Ernest Gambol, who collects for a guya dealer of some sortnamed Juarez . . . To give much more of the plot away would be to betray this hugely enjoyable, fast-moving novel . . . One senses that Johnson took great pleasure in writing on a deadline, keeping the story tight to the bone, honing his sentences down to the same kind of utilitarian purity he demonstrated in Tree of Smoke. His descriptive passagesand they are few and far betweenshow his poetic mastery . . . Johnson is one of the last of the hard-core American realist writers, workingin his own wayalong a line that might be charted from Melville and Stephen Crane, with a detour through Flannery OConnor and Don DeLillo. He routinely explores the nature of crimeall his novels have it in one form or an­otherin relation to the nature of grace (yes, grace) and the wider historical and cosmic order. So how does Nobody Move fit into his oeuvre? As Susan Sontag might say, it seems to operate as a flight from interpretation, settling into the genre for a ride, looking away from the wider implications of the world to enjoy itself by unfolding action within a neatly closed universe. But something more is at hand, because Johnson is a great writer, and even a casual entertainment, written well, has meaning. If Tree of Smokeintricately plotted, embracing the entire Vietnam era and bringing it up alongside the war in Iraqwas a huge piece of work, a Guernica of sorts, then Nobody Move is a Warhol soup can, a flinty, bright piece of pop art meant to be instantly understood and enjoyed. It opens with the line 'Jimmy Luntz had never been to war,' and it closes with two characters near a river. All of its symbolsif you want to take a shot at finding deeper meaningare in your face and seem to be saying, at least to me, that for the most part, most of us live within the status quo, one way or another, just trying to locate the next move."David Means, The New York Times Book Review

"So noir its almost pitch-black, this follow-up to Johnsons National Book Award-winning Tree of Smoke concerns a lovable loser named Luntzbarbershop-chorus member, Hawaiian-shirt wearer, and inveterate gamblerwho is in debt to an underworld bad guy. 'My idea of a health trip is switching to menthols and getting a tan,' he tells Anita Desilvera, a beautiful Native American woman whom he beds after a boozy night out, and who has bad guys of her own to escape. Against a desolate Western background of shantytowns and trailer parks, the pairs story plays out largely according to the genres dictates, with wisecrack-laden dialogue and evenly dispersed cliffhangers that are a legacy of the works genesis as a serialization in Playboy. But there are also moments of arresting lyrical beautya rivers swollen surface under a crescent moon 'resembled the unquiet belly of a living thing you could step onto and walk across.'"The New Yorker

"Jimmy Luntz has got to be the first protagonist in noir history to begin his blood-soaked descent singing in a men's choir. Jimmy's pipes are only the first clue that Nobody Move isn't your run-of-the-mill, bullet-hole-jacketed crime novel. Instead, this fast, funny diversion is protean writer Denis Johnson's sly follow-up to his Vietnam epic Tree of Smoke, winner of the 2007 National Book Award. It can be dicey for a literary lion to wander into the crime genre. Adhere to form and the author risks condescending or producing a faint copy of something disposable; subvert those conventions and the result is often flat, a thriller with no thrills. As if that balance weren't tricky enough, Johnson chose to write Nobody Move as a four-part serial for Playboy magazine. Well, as his Iraq War-distracted characters might say: Mission accomplished. Nobody Move does exactly what noir should dopropel the reader downhill, with its cast of losers, louts, and toughs as they cheat, shoot, and exploit one another into fast-talking oblivion. Yet there's a playful tilt, a humane rendering of its dark characters, and a relentless buzz in the sentences that recalls Jesus' Son, Johnson's tight

About the Author

Denis Johnson is the author of six novels, three collections of poetry, and one book of reportage. His novel Tree of Smoke was the 2007 winner of the National Book Award. He lives in northern Idaho.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

JasonM, September 30, 2011 (view all comments by JasonM)
More Hammett than Chandler, a good read when you need something fast-paced and hard-edged. West Coast noir for the current age, Johnson's writing feels both old an modern. The plot doesn't disappoint, and is only predictable to the extent you want it to be.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
Rand, January 4, 2011 (view all comments by Rand)
Great book. Gritty dialogue, quickly moving plot.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Craig Ensz, June 8, 2010 (view all comments by Craig Ensz)
Straight out of the 1940's film noir comes a rich and funny story of gangster, molls, and on-the-run lovers. Low lifes abound as $2.5 million causes mayhem and a chase reminiscent of the suspense yarns of Robert Ludlum. Will Jimmy and Anita out run the mob through the streets of Bakersfield, California? You'll skeep turning the pages to find out. An enjoyable read.
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 3 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780312429614
Author:
Johnson, Denis
Publisher:
Picador USA
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Thrillers
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Subject:
Crime
Subject:
noir
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20100431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
208
Dimensions:
8.24 x 5.52 x 0.56 in

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Related Subjects


Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Sale Books
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Popular Fiction » Contemporary Thrillers

Nobody Move Used Trade Paper
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$6.95 In Stock
Product details 208 pages Picador USA - English 9780312429614 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Denis Johnson never ceases to amaze, going from a National Book Award to this quick and dirty pulp novel — a transition that would seem strained if not for the evident ease with which he executes this diction switch. Must be read to be believed.

"Staff Pick" by ,

Jimmy Luntz has a knack for survival, if not for much else. Despite the trouble his gambler's instincts keep getting him into, he's a character with heart — which keeps getting in the way when it's time to pull the trigger. A smokin' good story.

"Review" by , "So noir it's almost pitch-black, [Nobody Move] concerns a lovable loser named Luntz — barbershop-chorus member, Hawaiian-shirt wearer, and inveterate gambler — who is in debt to an underworld bad guy....with wisecrack-laden dialogue and evenly dispersed cliffhangers that are a legacy of the work's genesis as a serialization in Playboy. But there are also moments of arresting lyrical beauty — a river's swollen surface under a crescent moon 'resembled the unquiet belly of a living thing you could step onto and walk across.'"
"Review" by , "A sly take on California crime noir fiction."
"Review" by , "All of its symbols — if you want to take a shot at finding deeper meaning — are in your face and seem to be saying, at least to me, that for the most part, most of us live within the status quo, one way or another, just trying to locate the next move."
"Review" by , "Reads like a Coen brothers movie waiting to happen, a cross between Blood Simple and No Country for Old Men."
"Review" by , "Displays a wicked sense of fun."
"Review" by , "The God I want to believe in has a voice and a sense of humor like Denis Johnson's."
"Synopsis" by , Touched by echoes of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett, Nobody Move is at once an homage to and a variation on literary form. It salutes one of our most enduring and popular genres — the American crime novel — but with a grisly humor and outrageousness that are Denis Johnson's own. Sexy, suspenseful, and above all entertaining, Nobody Move shows one of our greatest novelists at his versatile best.
"Synopsis" by , Jimmy Luntz is an innocent man, more or less. He's just leaving a barbershop chorus contest in Bakersfield, California, thinking about placing a few bets at the track, when he gets picked up by a thug named Gambol and his life takes a calamitous turn. Turns out Jimmy owes Gambol's boss significant money, and Gambol's been known to do serious harm to his charges. Soon enough a gun comes out, and Jimmy's on the run. While in hiding he meets up with a vengeful, often-drunk bombshell named Anita, and the two of them go on the lam together, attracting every kind of trouble.

The latest from National Book Award-winning author Denis Johnson, Nobody Move "does exactly what noir should do--propel the reader downhill, with its cast of losers, louts and toughs as they cheat, shoot, and exploit one another into fast-talking oblivion" (Jess Walker, The Boston Globe).

Denis Johnson is the author of six novels, three collections of poetry, and one book of reportage. His novel Tree of Smoke was the 2007 winner of the National Book Award. He lives in northern Idaho.

From the National Book Award–winning, bestselling author of Tree of Smoke comes a provocative thriller set in the American West. Nobody Move, which first appeared in the pages of Playboy, is the story of an assortment of lowlifes in Bakersfield, California, and their cat-and-mouse game over $2.3 million. Touched by echoes of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett, Nobody Move is at once an homage to and a variation on literary form. It salutes one of our most enduring and popular genresthe American crime novelbut with a grisly humor and outrageousness that are Denis Johnsons own. Sexy, suspenseful, and above all entertaining, Nobody Move shows one of our greatest novelists at his versatile best.

"Johnson is one of the last of the hard-core American realist writers, workingin his own wayalong a line that might be charted from Melville and Stephen Crane, with a detour through Flannery OConnor and Don DeLillo. He routinely explores the nature of crimeall his novels have it in one form or an­otherin relation to the nature of grace (yes, grace) and the wider historical and cosmic order . . . Johnson is a great writer, and even a casual entertainment, written well, has meaning. If Tree of Smokeintricately plotted, embracing the entire Vietnam era and bringing it up alongside the war in Iraqwas a huge piece of work, a Guernica of sorts, then Nobody Move is a Warhol soup can, a flinty, bright piece of pop art meant to be instantly understood and enjoyed."David Means, The New York Times Book Review
"Hot on the heels of his National Book Award-winning novel, Tree of Smoke, Denis Johnsonby far one of our best writershas written what might seem like a side step: a short, tight crime noir, produced under deadline as a serial for Playboy magazine. Like so many contemporary crime narratives (Pulp Fiction comes instantly to mind), Johnsons new novel, Nobody Move, keeps a narrow focus, homing in on the plight of Jimmy Luntz, a barbershop chorus singer, compulsive gambler and Steve Buscemi type who owes money to a guy named Ernest Gambol, who collects for a guya dealer of some sortnamed Juarez . . . To give much more of the plot away would be to betray this hugely enjoyable, fast-moving novel . . . One senses that Johnson took great pleasure in writing on a deadline, keeping the story tight to the bone, honing his sentences down to the same kind of utilitarian purity he demonstrated in Tree of Smoke. His descriptive passagesand they are few and far betweenshow his poetic mastery . . . Johnson is one of the last of the hard-core American realist writers, workingin his own wayalong a line that might be charted from Melville and Stephen Crane, with a detour through Flannery OConnor and Don DeLillo. He routinely explores the nature of crimeall his novels have it in one form or an­otherin relation to the nature of grace (yes, grace) and the wider historical and cosmic order. So how does Nobody Move fit into his oeuvre? As Susan Sontag might say, it seems to operate as a flight from interpretation, settling into the genre for a ride, looking away from the wider implications of the world to enjoy itself by unfolding action within a neatly closed universe. But something more is at hand, because Johnson is a great writer, and even a casual entertainment, written well, has meaning. If Tree of Smokeintricately plotted, embracing the entire Vietnam era and bringing it up alongside the war in Iraqwas a huge piece of work, a Guernica of sorts, then Nobody Move is a Warhol soup can, a flinty, bright piece of pop art meant to be instantly understood and enjoyed. It opens with the line 'Jimmy Luntz had never been to war,' and it closes with two characters near a river. All of its symbolsif you want to take a shot at finding deeper meaningare in your face and seem to be saying, at least to me, that for the most part, most of us live within the status quo, one way or another, just trying to locate the next move."David Means, The New York Times Book Review

"So noir its almost pitch-black, this follow-up to Johnsons National Book Award-winning Tree of Smoke concerns a lovable loser named Luntzbarbershop-chorus member, Hawaiian-shirt wearer, and inveterate gamblerwho is in debt to an underworld bad guy. 'My idea of a health trip is switching to menthols and getting a tan,' he tells Anita Desilvera, a beautiful Native American woman whom he beds after a boozy night out, and who has bad guys of her own to escape. Against a desolate Western background of shantytowns and trailer parks, the pairs story plays out largely according to the genres dictates, with wisecrack-laden dialogue and evenly dispersed cliffhangers that are a legacy of the works genesis as a serialization in Playboy. But there are also moments of arresting lyrical beautya rivers swollen surface under a crescent moon 'resembled the unquiet belly of a living thing you could step onto and walk across.'"The New Yorker

"Jimmy Luntz has got to be the first protagonist in noir history to begin his blood-soaked descent singing in a men's choir. Jimmy's pipes are only the first clue that Nobody Move isn't your run-of-the-mill, bullet-hole-jacketed crime novel. Instead, this fast, funny diversion is protean writer Denis Johnson's sly follow-up to his Vietnam epic Tree of Smoke, winner of the 2007 National Book Award. It can be dicey for a literary lion to wander into the crime genre. Adhere to form and the author risks condescending or producing a faint copy of something disposable; subvert those conventions and the result is often flat, a thriller with no thrills. As if that balance weren't tricky enough, Johnson chose to write Nobody Move as a four-part serial for Playboy magazine. Well, as his Iraq War-distracted characters might say: Mission accomplished. Nobody Move does exactly what noir should dopropel the reader downhill, with its cast of losers, louts, and toughs as they cheat, shoot, and exploit one another into fast-talking oblivion. Yet there's a playful tilt, a humane rendering of its dark characters, and a relentless buzz in the sentences that recalls Jesus' Son, Johnson's tight

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