READ è Street of No Return


In Street of No Return we meet the pathetic figure of Whitey Once upon a time Whitey was a. Goodis is known for writing gloomy books and this is definitely one of them It starts at the bottom and stays there Whitey was once a famous singer whose precious throat gets ripped to shreds after he refuses to let go of his love for Celia a dancer and gangster's girl Now he's a down and out drunk living on Skid Row for seven years and going nowhere One night he decides to actually go somewhere and finds himself on a dark adventure in the Philly Hellhole neighborhood on one eventful night You can't help but feel sympathy for Whitey knowing what he's been through and to root for him now that he's finally found a purpose And although he's prone to rambling Goodis really knows how to evoke an atmosphere and knows how to give a voice to characters who are at their lowest pointyesterday could never really be discarded it was always a part of now There was just no way to get rid of it No way to push it aside or throw it into an ash can or dig a hole and bury it For all buried memories were nothing than slow motion boomerangs taking their own sweet time to come back This one had taken seven years

CHARACTERS Street of No Return

Street of No ReturnCrooner with a million dollar voice and a standing invitation from any woman who heard hi. David Goodis's star is ascending in the noir writers' skies He had a Library of America volume of his five novels appear this year Goodis is an ace on several fronts For instance I like his breezy dialogue that sounds authentic to my ear I like his characters especially the protagonist Whitey in STREET OF NO RETURN Once a promising golden throated crooner did his career remind you of a young Sinatra Whitey's life has wrecked but the Skid Row lush still rises to the occasion to do one heroic act I like Goodis's social commentary underpinning the story Yeah life sucks a lot for some us His secondary characters are unforgettable especially Bertha and Chop the pair of muscle goons The three hundred pound Bertha is as hardboiled a dame as they get in noir Great stuff Loved it

David Goodis È 1 READ

READ è Street of No Return æ In Street of No Return we meet the pathetic figure of Whitey Once upon a time Whitey was a crooner with a million dollar voice and a standing invitation from any woman who heard him use it Until he had the bad luck to fall for Celia And then nothing would ever be the sameM use it Until he had the bad luck to fall for Celia And then nothing would ever be the sa. This was my first experience with a David Goodis book and thinking about the story and the style over the last couple of days it's better than three stars Goodis does a great job of establishing most of the characters none were predictable or stereotypical And after a so so start he does a good job of taking the reader on a wild if not uite believable ride over the course of one night in the late forties in what were then the rougher parts of PhiladelphiaPrecinct 37 I think Our hero Whitey doesn't fit what I was expecting for a hero I use the word hero but in all honesty Whitey is the most reluctant hero I've come across since Holden Caulfield He meets and falls for the femme fatale Celia early on Then he loses her in what has to be one of the most half hearted attempts in literature to steal the girl The word lazy comes to mind but it was less than that It was like he didn't care; about anything or anyone Without giving it away it plays like this After Celia's boyfriend finds out that Whitey and Celia are than friends he meets Whitey one night even eats dinner with him all pretty civil and calm considering This guy is connected with the syndicate mafia or was and wants back in again or whatever Anyways the mob boyfriend straight up tells Whitey; leave Celia alone or he will mess him up And he can make that happen there's no doubt So what does Whitey do Whitey dreams up this terrible plan to flee with Celia just pack what they can carry meet at the train station at pre arranged time and place and catch a train somewhere south the very next night Well the boyfriend is still suspicious he'd just met with him He's keeping close tabs on Celia The half assed plan fails miserably and Whitey is taken for a ride to the country by several people severely beaten and left for dead He barely survives and is a shell of the man he once was; messed up bad and permanent So over the next several years he takes to drink spends all his money burns all his friends Classic slide to skid row life by the drop He's homeless and pitiful and likely mentally ill Thing is I was rooting for the guy hoping he would do something to 'save' himself or at least to try It was frustrating the first third of the book watching this apathetic hero keep giving up every chance he got Then one night seven or eight years later he gets in a tight situation; he's wanted for killing a Cop He's innocent of course but it's not looking good for old Whitey He ends up on the run from the Police and others Along the way he meets up with a wide variety of characters all in the same night Goodis' talent is undeniable throughout the last half of the book Take these couple lines describing how Whitey who is sober feels about himself He has been beaten he's hungry scared and cold and is trying to move north through the poorer neighborhoods keeping out of sight using backyards and alleys He happens to look at a house with the lights on over a backyard fence And who is standing in the kitchen window but Celia Our hero is dumbstruck and begins telling himself how there is no way he can reach out or try to talk to her now; his situation is hopeless and he's likely a dead man So now you're getting to see You're in that same bracket buddy You're one of them less than nothings who like the taste of being hurt That makes you lower than the mice and the roaches At least they try to save their skins they got a normal outlook But you you're just a clown that ain't funny And that's a sad picture that's the saddest picture of allOn that cheerful uote I'll wrap it up I'll recommend it Goodis was uniue I found plenty of things to like in this book but I'm betting he had success in others