Monday, August 13, 2012

Noteworthy Reads: FORT WORTH NIGHTS by James Reasoner

The 1980 novel TEXAS WIND first introduced Cody, James Reasoner's Fort Worth-based PI, to readers. It remains Cody's only novel-length appearance, despite being highly lauded and nowadays considered something of a cult classic.

Yet while Reasoner penned no further full-length adventures featuring Cody, he did write a number of Cody short stories that appeared in various publications between 1982 and 1988. These stories—along with a brand new one—have now been gathered together for this fine collection entitled FORT WORTH NIGHTS.

Cody is outwardly a common guy type with simple tastes and an easy manner. But he is methodical and tenacious when on the job, sharp at picking up clues and nuances, and not easily swayed from accomplishing whatever he's hired to do. He doesn't regularly carry a gun, but certainly knows how to use one (a wide variety, in fact) when need be. He knows how to handle himself when it comes to the physical stuff, too.

The stories contained here are fast-paced, interesting, filled with colorful people and settings, a good dose of action, and covering a wide range of crimes and exciting plot twists. All told in Reasoner's forthright style, setting just the right tone for the time, place, and most of all for the character of Cody himself.
The new story, "Assisted Dying", written especially for this collection, brings us a Cody who has aged appropriately since the earlier adventures and is quite aware of the fact he is grown older and has certain limitations. But he knows how to work within them … and proves quickly enough that he still isn't someone to be trifled with.

For me, reading these stories—old and new—was like reminiscing with an old friend I hadn't seen in a while. It was a great visit … one I would welcome again soon.
Highly recommended.

Persevere --- WD

1 comment:

James Reasoner said...

Many thanks, Wayne. I had a great time writing the new story and going back over the old ones.