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Little Green (Easy Rawlins Mysteries)by Walter Mosley
Mystery is not a genre I dive into very often, but I always make an exception for the well-written characters of Walter Mosley: Socrates Fortlow, Fearless Jones, Leonid McGill, and — my favorite — Ezekiel "Easy" Rawlins. Over the course of 10 novels, spanning from 1948 to 1967, the L.A.-based black detective and World War II vet has solved murders while confronting the racial inequities that are sadly still a part of the African American experience.
When the author appeared to kill off Rawlins in 2007's Blonde Faith, I mourned the end of a great series. But Mosley delighted his fans with Easy's return this past summer. In Little Green, Easy is cruising the Sunset Strip during the Summer of Love, recovering from his injuries as he investigates the disappearance of a young black man on a bad acid trip and his reappearance with over $200,000 he can't explain.
If you're an Easy fan, reading Little Green is like slipping on a comfortable pair of shoes. All your favorite supporting players are back (plus a surprise return). And if you've never read the series, I urge you to start at the beginning with Devil in a Blue Dress. You won't be sorry.
Synopses & Reviews
When Walter Mosley burst onto the literary scene in 1990 with his first Easy Rawlins mystery, Devil in a Blue Dress — a combustible mixture of Raymond Chandler and Richard Wright — he captured the attention of hundreds of thousands of readers (including future president Bill Clinton). Eleven books later, Easy Rawlins is one of the few private eyes in contemporary crime fiction who can be called iconic and immortal. In the incendiary and fast-paced Little Green, he returns from the brink of death to investigate the dark side of L.A.’s 1960s hippie haven, the Sunset Strip.
We last saw Easy in 2007’s Blonde Faith, fighting for his life after his car plunges over a cliff. True to form, the tough WWII veteran survives, and soon his murderous sidekick Mouse has him back cruising the mean streets of L.A., in all their psychedelic 1967 glory, to look for a young black man, Evander “Little Green” Noon, who disappeared during an acid trip. Fueled by an elixir called Gator’s Blood, brewed by the conjure woman Mama Jo, Easy experiences a physical, spiritual, and emotional resurrection, but peace and love soon give way to murder and mayhem. Written with Mosley’s signature grit and panache, this engrossing and atmospheric mystery is not only a trip back in time, it is also a tough-minded exploration of good and evil, and of the power of guilt and redemption. Once again, Easy asserts his reign over the City of (Fallen) Angels.
“In 2007’s Blonde Faith, set in 1967, Easy Rawlins drove drunkenly off a cliff in what his creator indicated was likely his last appearance. Now, after two months of sliding in and out of consciousness, Easy begins the long journey back to the living, in Mosley’s superb 12th mystery featuring his iconic sleuth….If there were an Edgar for best comeback player, Easy Rawlins would be a shoo-in.” Publishers Weekly (starred)
"Mosley fans were pining for the resurrection of Rawlins. Their dreams have come true....Mosley returns here to doing what he does best: setting the pain and pleasure of individual lives, lived mostly in L.A.'s black community, within an instantly recognizable historical moment and allowing the two to feed off one another....[A] major event for crime-fiction fans." Booklist
Easy Rawlins is back (almost literally from the dead after the car wreck that ended Blonde Faith, his last outing) and cruising the hippified streets of the Sunset Strip circa 1967, in search of a young black man who has gone missing — and maybe of his own rebirth.
Walter Mosley burst on the literary scene in 1990 with Devil in a Blue Dress (recently named one of the L.A. Times's best novels about L.A.), the first Easy Rawlins mystery, a combustible and irresistible mixture of Raymond Chandler and Richard Wright that future president Bill Clinton picked up on, as did hundreds of thousands of other readers. Eleven books later, Easy Rawlins is one of the small handful of private eyes in contemporary crime fiction who can be called immortal. So it is great news on every front that this major figure's new mystery features the return of his signature and most resonant character.
About the Author
Walter Mosley is the author of more than forty books, including eleven previous Easy Rawlins mysteries, the first of which, Devil in a Blue Dress, was made into an acclaimed film starring Denzel Washington. Always Outnumbered was an HBO film starring Laurence Fishburne, adapted from Mosley’s first Socrates Fortlow novel. A native of Los Angeles and a graduate of Goddard College, he holds an MFA from CCNY and lives in Brooklyn, New York. He is the winner of numerous awards, including an O. Henry Award, a Grammy, and PEN America’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
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