Friday, May 23, 2008
Non-Oprah Book Club: The Horse Latitudes
This is one of those special surprise books. I remember that I was looking through the small book selection of my hometown drug strore, Laverdier's - one of the only "bookstores" in town, when I came upon this neon cover. It definitely stood out from the rest of the paperbacks. I picked it up and read the back; it reminded me a little of the few Elmore Leonard books I had read at the time. I bought it, probably went and played a couple of games of Hipoodrome in the arcade next door and went home to read.
That summer, there were two books that I read cover to back without taking a break: The Cider House Rules and The Horse Latitudes. I loved the book, but it was years before I saw another book by Robert Ferrigno. Back before Amazon and Borders, there were small bookstores scattered here and there where I lived; but they really didn't have a huge selection - and the selection at Laverdier's and Doug's Shop 'n Save didn't offer much.
If you've never read it, the book is a violent story of a drug dealer accused of a murder that involves his ex-wife. He has to get to the bottom of a scheme that involves a scientific breakthrough. And as savage as the novel is, it is also pretty funny, especially the bumbling of two thick-necked goons who have about a half of a brain between them.