Sunday, January 12, 2014

Two classic fugitive novels

For a while now I've been working my way through the generally accepted crime classics. I happened to get these two novels from the library at the same time. They have a lot in common. Early seventies. Debut novels. Both turned into iconic films. Both about men on the run. And they're both excellent reads, never mind the fact that the man on the run book (or woman on the run, although I can't think of one of those right now) is one of my favorite storylines.

James Grady's 1974 Six Days of the Condor is about a desk-bound CIA agent analyst who is suddenly being hunted by the agency he works for. It's a pretty exciting, quick read, although the cutaways to the CIA agents tracking down the hero were less exciting than the rest of the book.

The 1972 First Blood was my favorite of the two. Just an unrelenting story about two war veterans caught in a no-win situation. This, of course, produced the more famous movie of the two, but the film, while following the essential plotline, is pretty different. Read this, if you haven't. A very dark thriller.

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