Community Self Help

December 17, 2019

Several years ago, Coast Mountain removed the bus shelter that used to be on the east side of Commercial by E. Georgia (opposite the York Theatre). This was a grave inconvenience to a tired old fart like me and also because the bus stop is close to a major seniors’ facilities. I wrote both to the bus company and CoV Engineering at the time, without any response.

I happened by there this morning to discover that some civic minded person has come up with a partial homemade solution:


Image: Sky Diving

December 17, 2019

In A Lonely Place

December 17, 2019

While waiting for my next 2010s novel to arrive at the local library, I decided to read something rather older, a crime novel that was recommended to me some while ago,  It is In A Lonely Place by Dorothy B. Hughes, published in 1947.

Set in Los Angeles, In A Lonely Place was one of the first literary portraits of a serial killer.  In a vivid and fast-paced mix of first and third person views she gets deep into the mind of a murderer, detailing his confident highs and his anxious lows. Never judgemental, Hughes traces his isolated life through a period of several weeks, including his desperate and ultimately unsuccessful attempt to create a normal relationship with a girl he falls for.  In the finest noir tradition, Hughes paints an intense impression of Los Angelenos going about their daily lives beneath a cloud of deepening dread as the number of murders increases and the police are unable to make a breakthrough in the case.

Her writing is clear and direct, drawing fine believable characters in swift sketches. She is expert at precisely building tension, releasing it, and then rebuilding it over and over again. How many victims are there? Can he get away with it?  Eventually, the string is pulled so taut that the end seems a relief for everyone concerned.

The 1950 Humphrey Bogart movie adaption great though it is as a noir cinema classic, makes a number of major changes to the story, and I prefer the book.

What a marvelous book this is.  I read it in three big draughts, not wanting to put it down.

Well worth the read!