Saturday, April 25, 2009

Saturday Short Story: Mulholland Dive

Michael Connelly "Mulholland Dive." Los Angeles Noir.Ed. Denise Hamilton. Akashic Books: 2007. 21-38.

A departure from everything I've read and discussed here so far, "Mullholland Dive" is a short story set in Los Angeles, written in the noir style. It features Detective Clewiston, an accident investigator, as he attempts to explain what caused a brand-new Porsche to dive off the side of the road, killing the rich and famous driver who happened to be involved in a messy divorce.

While this story was slow to capture my attention, starting as it did with blood and crime scene procedure (including some unfamiliar police vocabulary), by the end I was impressed by Connelly's command of the form. It was a tight, clever, and perfectly illustrative of the noir style, particularly the work of James M. Cain. It also has an excellent sense of place, perfectly depicting the geography and spirit of the dark and twisty roads that divide city from suburbs.

This is a story for lovers of noir and lovers of Los Angeles, one of those short stories that leaves you with a wry smile on your face and an admiration for the author's skill.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like an anthology I would enjoy. Thanks for coming by Short Story Sunday. I'd love to have you join in as a regular. But please don't worry about doing them on Saturdays. There's also a Short Story Monday over at The Book Mine Set.

    The more people reading short stories the better, I say.