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Expendable Man (Revised)
Expendable Man (Revised) | Dorothy B Hughes
44 posts | 20 read | 45 to read
"It was surprising what old experiences remembered could do to a presumably educated, civilized man." And Hugh Denismore, a young doctor driving his mother's Cadillac from Los Angeles to Phoenix, is eminently educated and civilized. He is privileged, would seem to have the world at his feet, even. Then why does the sight of a few redneck teenagers disconcert him? Why is he reluctant to pick up a disheveled girl hitchhiking along the desert highway? And why is he the first person the police suspect when she is found dead in Arizona a few days later? Dorothy B. Hughes ranks with Raymond Chandler and Patricia Highsmith as a master of mid-century noir. In books like" In a Lonely Place" and "Ride the Pink Horse" she exposed a seething discontent underneath the veneer of twentieth-century prosperity. With "The Expendable Man," first published in 1963, Hughes upends the conventions of the wrong-man narrative to deliver a story that engages readers even as it implicates them in the greatest of all American crimes.
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review
Cathythoughts
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

From the very beginning I felt tense , had butterflies. I loved the desert setting. I loved the surprises along the way , Thankyou @vivastory for recommending I go in blind… I went in knowing nothing and it made all the difference. I was fascinated as the story unfolded and at the draw , the force , that brought certain characters together. What an excellent book. I‘ll definitely try In A Lonely Place next.

Tamra 👏🏾 Love it when that happens! 1d
LeahBergen Great review! I went in blind, too! 1d
Liz_M I love this book! 1d
See All 16 Comments
vivastory I'm so glad that this worked out for you! I think you'll like In A Lonely Place, too. 1d
sarahbarnes Stacking! 21h
BarbaraBB I loved this one too and I‘m sure you‘ll love In a Lonely Place as well 🖤 20h
Cathythoughts @Tamra Me too. Have you read this one, I‘d say you‘d love it ❤️ 17h
Cathythoughts @LeahBergen Thanks. I loved it. ❤️ 17h
Cathythoughts @Liz_M I know !! I‘m looking forward to A Lonely Place too. 17h
Cathythoughts @vivastory Thanks 👍🏻❤️ 17h
Cathythoughts @sarahbarnes I look forward to your thoughts 👍🏻❤️ 17h
Cathythoughts @BarbaraBB It‘s a good one ❤️ 17h
batsy I loved this and also went in not knowing anything when we read it with our NYRB group. Great review! 16h
Tamra @Cathythoughts not yet, but I have it TBR. Must bump it up! 😊 13h
Cathythoughts @batsy Thanks. It‘s so well written, I loved it. ❤️ 6h
Cathythoughts @Tamra You absolutely must 😁 6h
49 likes2 stack adds16 comments
review
erzascarletbookgasm
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I‘ve found a little gem in Dorothy B Hughes. Walter Mosley sums it nicely in the afterword, “Her novels are carefully crafted pieces, ahead of their time in their use of psychological suspense and their piercing observations about class and race.”
I think this is such a well done piece of noir fiction. Atmospheric writing, told with a great sense of dread, it held my attention to the very end. Recommend!

vivastory This book has one of my favorite twists. I love her! In A Lonely Place & Dread Journey are both good. 2y
erzascarletbookgasm @vivastory Yes! I was so surprised at the twist, I flipped back the earlier pages to see if I‘ve missed something! I thought his anxiety was due to a crime he committed in LA 😅 2y
erzascarletbookgasm @vivastory I‘ve heard how brilliant In A Lonely Place is, definitely stacking these two. Thanks for the recommendation. 2y
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Cathythoughts Sounds good Jessie! Stacked 2y
LeahBergen Oh, this is a great read. Nice review! 2y
batsy It's so good 🖤 2y
Leftcoastzen I too loved this and In a Lonely Place . 2y
64 likes1 stack add7 comments
review
sprainedbrain
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I wasn‘t able to get a copy of this book when #NYRBbookclub read it last year, but @Eyelit sent it as her choice for our #LGP2E book club and I‘m so glad!

I admittedly don‘t read a lot of noir, but I loved this slow burn mystery. The story has an undercurrent of doom to it, so even going in knowing nothing about it, I could tell from the first pages I was in for some discomfort and drama. Just fantastic writing.

Spoilerish stuff in comments. ⬇️

sprainedbrain Now that I‘ve finished it and researched, I know that what happened on page 54 of this 245 page book is widely regarded as a plot twist... but as I said, I knew nothing of this book when I started. So I sat straight up in bed when I realized the character whose eyes I had been looking through for 53 pages was a Black man, and not the white man that my assuming self had thought. Totally upended and elevated the whole story. Brilliant! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (edited) 4y
sprainedbrain What a fantastic pick, Lesley! Now I can read your journal entry! 😂 @Eyelit 4y
Eyelit Yes, read my very brief and rushed (yet spoilery) journal entry, lol! I‘m so glad you liked it. I first read it years ago and it really stuck with me. 4y
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batsy Yes, I loved it too! A very discreet yet layered novel... I love that the surface is somewhat bland but there is so much more than what you initially see. A clever way to involve the reader. 4y
LeahBergen Yes! Wasn‘t that plot bit very cleverly done?? 4y
Liz_M That early twist made me love this mystery so much! (edited) 4y
sprainedbrain @LeahBergen so well done! I can‘t remember the last time a book took me by surprise like that. It really challenged my assumptions. 4y
sprainedbrain @Liz_M It definitely hooked me. Totally changed the trajectory of the whole story. I remember vaguely thinking.. why does it make him so nervous to pick up this hitchhike? Wow. 4y
sprainedbrain @batsy you‘re absolutely right! There isn‘t a whole lot of ‘action‘ for much of the book, but there was still so much going on. So well written. 4y
katy4peas I‘m seeing this tag a lot. What is #NYRBbookclub and #LGP2E book club ?
🙂
4y
sprainedbrain @katy4peas NYRB is organized by @vivastory and reads one of the NYRB Classics each month. It‘s closed for voting/nominating members now, but I believe anyone can read along with the chosen book and join in the discussions here on Litsy each month. #LGP2E is Litsy Goes Postal 2nd Edition. Round 2 of the very first Litsy postal book club that originally began in 2016, and just recently started again with the remaining members mailing new books. 4y
93 likes4 stack adds11 comments
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Aimeesue
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Tried to get this one read in time for #nyrbbookclub but December was just too busy. Almost done now, though, and I'm enjoying it. I lived in the Mojave Desert for several years (about 2 hrs north of Indio, CA/ Palm Springs) so I completely understand why he picked her up. No choice, really. It's brutal out there.

batsy I would love to visit. The book really conveys that sense of space. 4y
31 likes1 comment
review
batsy
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I'm so glad I managed to finish this in Dec for the #NYRBbookclub. As mentioned in other fantastic reviews & responses to the brilliant discussion, this isn't a whodunit but a simmering piece of noir. And it's about waiting. That sounds boring, but it isn't. The pace of the novel, the temporal space we enter, is that of a paranoia brought on by the racial order. It's so subtly done & exquisitely done, a delicate puzzle that involves its reader. ⬇️

batsy I agree with @Billypar that the mystery fell a bit flat, although it's meant to be that way. I love @saresmoore 's description of the "practiced restraint" of the main character, reflected in the writing. My quibble is that Hugh is bland, but I think what we get in him is a character study of class aspiration, education, & "good breeding", which is revealing. A novel like a jewel; it gleams differently from every angle when held up to light. 4y
Cinfhen Wonderful review 4y
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TrishB What a gorgeous review, as always. 4y
Suet624 Beautifully reviewed. 4y
Tanisha_A Super review. Intrigued. ❤️ 4y
Blaire Your reviews always have me #stacking. Beautiful review. 4y
Billypar Great review! True about the waiting- it's a highly realistic version of noir. It creates suspense because of how much is at stake for Hugh, having to fear not just arrest but even a newspaper story that names him and destroys his reputation. 4y
saresmoore Well said, friend! Even now, I‘m seeing different facets of the story. 4y
batsy @Cinfhen @TrishB @Suet624 @Tanisha_A Thank you, lovely people ❤️ 4y
batsy @Billypar @saresmoore Thank you both! I loved reading yours and everyone else's comments in discussion today after I'd finished... This is one of those subtly-layered stories that yields much insight. 4y
BarbaraBB I mostly end up loving our reads even more after the discussion! 😘 4y
Billypar @BarbaraBB I'm still a newbie but that's so true - I've wanted to add another star to my initial rating after each of them. Thanks @Liz_M and @vivastory for facilitating this past month's discussion! 4y
Liz_M @Billypar Thank you for joining the discussion! 4y
batsy @BarbaraBB @Billypar Absolutely 💜 4y
100 likes5 stack adds15 comments
review
mklong
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I love the way this is written, especially the unsettling way that Hughes challenges the reader‘s assumptions. She also writes about the ways class and race affect the justice system in a way that is every bit as relevant now as it was when she wrote it more than fifty years ago. I only wish the mystery itself had a little more bite and, well, mystery.

Sorry to be late with this #NYRBBookClub pick but December never goes quite as planned!

BarbaraBB I felt the same but thanks to our hosts I now know noir novels are about the process, not the outcome 😉😘 4y
mklong @barbarabb I‘ll have to check out the discussion. @saresmoore made an excellent point in her review about the style matching Hugh‘s restraint and that made me appreciate, if not necessarily enjoy, it more 4y
LeahBergen Great review! And exactly what @BarbaraBB said, too. 👍🏻 4y
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vivastory I'm glad you enjoyed! Wonderful review! 4y
batsy I just finished! And this is a great review 👍🏽 4y
Suet624 Yes to all of this. 😁 4y
Liz_M I can't seem to copy-paste all the people tagged for the discussion, but please know that I am so glad it was a fun, rolling, all day discussion! I didn't want to interrupt or add a note that seemed conclusive. I am grateful to all that took time during the holiday season to participate! 😘 And many thanks to About for keeping me on task. 4y
Liz_M Sigh. About=Scott. ( @vivastory ) 4y
vivastory @Liz_M Thanks for co-hosting! And I agree, it was a great year end discussion! 4y
56 likes9 comments
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Reviewsbylola
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Here is my #bookreport for this week. Five books finished. Two were for book clubs. I‘m feeling lazy tonight. 🤷🏼‍♀️

Cinfhen Graphics work perfectly for me 😘 4y
87 likes1 comment
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Reviewsbylola
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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I have had a horrible headache since last night, so I‘m taking it easy with our #nyrbbookclub book this morning and taking the chance to cuddle one of our new Guinea pigs , Winter.

We‘re new to gps but loving them!

valeriegeary Winter is adorable! 😍 Boo to the headache, hope it leaves you alone soon! 4y
Librarybelle Hope you feel better soon! 4y
Megabooks Awwww!! 4y
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Bookzombie Hope you feel better soon! Winter is so cute! 4y
Nute I hate those lingering headaches. Do take it easy! I know that Winter is helping to make things better!💕 4y
Tamra Super cute new edition! 4y
LeahBergen Ohhhh, piggies! 4y
81 likes7 comments
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Liz_M
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Billypar Yes! That's one of the many things I love about noir- at its core its about someone who wants to figure things out no matter what the cost is, and that process is more interesting than the resolution. The suspense created while Hugh is trying to unravel the mystery is why it's compelling. 4y
Billypar I think one of the things that kept me from enjoying it more is I never felt truly lost in the mystery like other noir: the final explanation isn't very different from the original theory Hugh has. In other novels or films I like seeing how a case changes from what it looks like at the outset. 4y
Liz_M @Billypar In your review, you mentioned being disappointed by the actual mystery plot. But as implied by the quote, I believe the mystery wasn't the point. What I enjoyed is not whodunit or even whydunit, but the window into a specific society and time -- what are the norms, what are the transgressions, and what constitutes a “good outcome“. 4y
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Billypar @Liz_M I think it's true that the answer isn't the point, but for me, the mystery plot developments are important. I like how watching something that starts out looking simple but through the plot developments reveals itself to be very complex. Like an invisible side of society brought to the service.. 4y
Billypar @Liz_M I did enjoy the novel but for different reasons than many mysteries: it seemed more like the struggle against an injustice that characterizes a good, tense drama was what was most interesting. 4y
saresmoore I do agree with the quote, but I was a bit disappointed in the lack of intrigue in this one. It felt too neat and tidy in the end. I wanted another plot twist or some more dark depth to one of the “good guys.” 4y
Billypar @saresmoore I kept thinking he was going to be betrayed by someone - Ellen, Sky, Edward (at times I was picturing a conspiracy among all three 😁). 4y
Leftcoastzen There was a scene I remember where I thought for a moment Skye and Ellen might be caught in a tryst , when Hugh was headed to his house, did I dream that? 😄 4y
BarbaraBB I agree with the quote and with @saresmoore ; the plot was more noir than the ending. (edited) 4y
emilyhaldi I agree @saresmoore @Billypar While the book was more about the journey to proving innocence rather than the resolution itself, I did want the crime to involve more of a twist or conspiracy. 4y
Billypar @Leftcoastzen No you didn't dream it: I thought for sure something was up then because there's a point where Hugh is thinking 'why was Sky at her room?' I thought it was either a tryst or some kind of indicator of a major twist coming. 4y
vivastory @Billypar I had the same thought too. And, yes, I think this quote is actually a great way to summarize the difference between noir & mystery. A noir seems to be all process, whereas mystery is the solution 4y
Leftcoastzen @vivastory well put ! 4y
Reviewsbylola I see the point above about how it wasn‘t really a mystery. But Hugh unraveling the mystery, along with Houston and Ellen still kept me riveted. 4y
GatheringBooks as i was reading the question, the answer that immediately came to mind was: what, then, is the point? I wonder what Eleanor Gold had in mind. (edited) 4y
Liz_M @GatheringBooks The point is the journey, not the destination? Excellent question! 4y
sisilia I‘m with you @emilyhaldi @saresmoore @Billypar When I reached the end, I was like “That‘s all?!” I enjoyed the noir journey, though 🥰 4y
Suet624 @Billypar @leftcoastzen I totally thought Ellen and Skye were going to go off with each other. I actually wondered why they didn't. Honestly, I'm still not quite sure why Ellen ended up with Hugh. She was gung-ho for him from the very beginning. 4y
Suet624 @Reviewsbylola I'm with you. But I like this question. I hadn't really considered the difference between noir and mystery. 4y
Liz_M @BarbaraBB @emilyhaldi @GatheringBooks @LeahBergen @Leftcoastzen @saresmoore @sisilia @vivastory @batsy @Billypar @JenniferP @Reviewsbylola @Suet624

I am so glad this was such a fun, all day discussion! I didn't want to interrupt on the weekend to add a thank you note that seemed conclusive, but I am grateful to all that took time during the holiday season to participate. And, of course, many thanks to Scott for creating this fabulous group!
4y
Suet624 @Liz_M thank you for hosting and Happy New Year! 4y
Leftcoastzen @Liz_M thanks for hosting and some great questions I LOVE this book club! Thanks @vivastory too! 4y
LeahBergen Thanks for cohosting! I‘m glad I could manage to pop in on the discussion for a bit. Happy New Year! 4y
batsy @Liz_M Thank you for cohosting and for the interesting questions. I'm sorry I couldn't join in because I was in a mad rush to finish the book, but I loved going over the answers yesterday. Happy New Year! Wishing you plenty of bookish joy in 2020 📚📚🎉 4y
batsy Happy New Year @vivastory and thank you for the brilliant idea of the #NYRBbookclub it's been one of my reading highlights! 4y
BarbaraBB Thank you @Liz_M for coming up with these great questions. Here‘s to many more good books in 2020! 4y
emilyhaldi I love these discussions!!! Thank you for being a wonderful December cohost. Joining this bookclub was a 2019 highlight for me 😊 (edited) 4y
21 likes27 comments
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Liz_M
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Billypar I guess we have authors like Hammett, Chandler, and Cain to thank for film noir, but I'll bet the films influenced later mystery novels as much or more than the original novels. The images get seared into your brain, and sometimes works like this one are distinguished more by how they deviate from the noir prototype than what they retain. 4y
saresmoore This is a good question and I don‘t think I‘m informed enough to give it a good answer. But, when I think of noir—both books and films—I think of that pervasive, claustrophobic dread. Even the good, light moments are shrouded in something darker & heavier. 4y
Liz_M @saresmoore I also don't know much about noir film, but @vivastory and I were both intrigued by Hughes career -- in addition to being a journalist & poet, she also worked in Hollywood, most notably as Hitchcock's assistant on his 1945 film Spellbound. 4y
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Billypar @Liz_M That's so interesting- you wonder how that may have shaped her writing. Especially since Hitchcock had so many films about protagonists who were wrongly accused. I'm the opposite I've seen a ton of film noir but haven't read many noir novels. 4y
saresmoore Oh, that‘s fascinating! @Liz_M 4y
Leftcoastzen I have seen/ read a lot but that is hard to answer,there is definitely cross pollination,film can use light and shadow to create mood instantly,descriptions with words take longer. 4y
BarbaraBB Wow, you really did you homework @Liz_M and @vivastory I love noir novels live this one but hardly ever watch noir movies. So you think/mean Hitchcock produces noir movies? 4y
vivastory @Billypar I agree that Hammett, Chandler & Cain kicked off the whole genre. I know a number of the early noir novels were adapted into films (including Hughes other excellent book In a Lonely Place) & at one point the genre went international. I think that for awhile the films became a big influence on the books, but nowdays it feels like they're in constant communication with each other. 4y
vivastory @BarbaraBB Not all of them, but I'd classify Vertigo, Rear Window & Strangers on a Train as noir 4y
Reviewsbylola I can‘t really say, as I don‘t like movies and rarely watch them. 4y
Billypar @vivastory I can't think of any where I've read the book and seen the film but I'd be interested in comparing the two experiences (although I'll still have the actors in my head, so it wouldn't be exactly independent either). 4y
vivastory @Billypar That's always a risk! Especially when they are nothing like you picture 4y
vivastory @Reviewsbylola I used to love movies, but I'm starting to watch fewer & fewer. It just cuts into reading time. 4y
Billypar @vivastory @BarbaraBB Agreed about those Hitchcock's as noir. There are others that feel noirish in spots (e.g. Notorious and North by Northwest) but they also belong in the spy genre. N×NW is one that has the wrongly accused angle so I wonder if she drew inspiration from those themes. 4y
BarbaraBB @vivastory @Reviewsbylola Me too, I hardly watch any tv or films anymore. I am however interested in more noir books like this one, @Billypar @Liz_M 4y
Reviewsbylola Definitely check out James Cain, if you haven‘t already. He‘s the best! @BarbaraBB 4y
Reviewsbylola Exactly!! I usually only watch tv if I‘m doing something sedentary, like folding laundry. For some reason, my attention span is fine with books, but movies, forget it! @vivastory 4y
BarbaraBB @Reviewsbylola Thanks, I will! I read and liked The Postman Always Rings Twice but I remember your review about another book of his some time ago. I‘ll check it out! 4y
GatheringBooks i think the cross-pollination, as @Leftcoastzen pointed out is inevitable - esp in contemporary fiction where the narrative reads more & more like netflix episodes per chapter. but what i know (and like) of noir whether film or book is that sense of permeating grey dread that can not be shaken off, and becomes part of one‘s being, biting into one‘s insides - transforming characters into something other than who they are, despite redemption. 4y
sisilia I need to read more about Hughes and noir films @Liz_M @vivastory 😅 (edited) 4y
Suet624 I had no idea she worked with Hitchcock. I wonder what this novel would have been like if Hitchcock had made it into a movie. 4y
JenniferP @Suet624 it would be hard to lose the surprise of not knowing Hugh‘s race if this was made into a movie. But other than that I could really see it working well. 4y
Suet624 Well now. That‘s a very good point! @JenniferP (edited) 4y
BarbaraBB I agree with you @GatheringBooks , very well said. 4y
BarbaraBB @Reviewsbylola Double Indemnity! That was it! Thanks! 4y
21 likes26 comments
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Liz_M
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Billypar Densmore in some ways plays the part of a traditional private eye: he has to figure out when he's being lied to, and sometimes needs to do some play acting to get the truth from people who would be suspicious. But he is also his own client, so it added an urgency to the usual detective work: the stakes always seemed higher. 4y
Liz_M @Billypar Good point about being his own client!

I always think of hard-boiled detective novels being abut a flawed PI that bends the rules to achieve the right outcome for his client, but in Hugh's case (and to make the author's point about race), he has to be flawless, to do everything right in order to achieve a good outcome.
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saresmoore @Billypar That is a great point! 4y
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Liz_M I wan to hear more from @LeahBergan about Ellen being “the classic supportive “dame” in the noirish fiction of this era“ 4y
Leftcoastzen Hammett and Chandler are much more urban , though Jim Thompson did more dusty little town noir.Indio is still a dusty little town .Hughes got the heat and the feel of early 60s Phoenix /Scottsdale perfectly. 4y
Leftcoastzen One of the points of Hugh being his own PI , the tension in following the trail to people,places, or things you are linked to could highlight that you are guilty rather than find what could exonerate you. 4y
vivastory @Leftcoastzen That's a fantastic point! This does seem to be a bit of an anomaly as most noir novels do seem to be set in the urban centers. A refreshing change, for sure. 4y
Reviewsbylola I love noir from this time period, and this one did not disappoint. The crooked cops, Hugh being forced to do the detective work himself, the suspense, all made the story fit together perfectly. 4y
GatheringBooks am not familiar with usual tropes in crime fiction as i am merely a consumer, & rarely do i critique/analyze in this fashion. But the point raised by @Leftcoastzen about having to be one‘s own PI to exonerate (or dig a much deeper hole for) one‘s self is evident here, + the annoying cops who do not seem inclined to do actual investigative work, & the hero White lawyer who since his Whiteness is explicitly pointed out diminished his Saviour role. 4y
16 likes9 comments
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Liz_M
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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JenniferP I thought race was effectively explored but obvious. The other one that I noticed was gender. It was more subtly done, but I was especially troubled by Ellen. Something about the fact that she was intelligent, and beautiful (that was harped on too much for my taste), and successful, but all anyone talked about was who she would marry bothered me. 4y
JenniferP And then I felt that she was too supportive of Hugh too quickly. Was she actually attracted to him? Had she just seen enough about racial inequality to want to help him? I felt she was a flat character that deserved to be more rounded out on her own. I wasn't sure if that was a commentary on how women were perceived at the time or if it was just because Hughes didn't want her to be a focus at the expense of the “mystery“. 4y
Billypar @JenniferP I had the same reaction: I was confused why Ellen was so committed to a stranger she was fixed up with at the wedding 4y
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Billypar @JenniferP Maybe it was meant to be both her instant attraction and the racial inequality aspect that makes her so devoted, but it would have been interesting to see some moments of doubt creep in. 4y
Liz_M @JenniferP @Billypar From conversations Hugh had with his family, I gathered that Ellen had been primed by the niece/family for days (if not weeks or months) to like Hugh. People can have crushes on fictional characters and movie stars, so this didn't surprise me as much as it should have. 😄 4y
Billypar As far as class goes, it is interesting to see Hugh's view of Ellen and Houston being more natural together because of their mutual wealth. Yet many of the white characters see Ellen and Hugh through a racist lens and the middle vs upper class distinction is lost on them. 4y
Leftcoastzen @Billypar Great point! I read the wonderful nonfiction book Warmth of Other Suns. One person is a doctor. It was diabolical how someone who was educated and did “everything right “was dismissed with racism,sometimes with more venom because of his accomplishments. 4y
LeahBergen @JenniferP @Billypar I read Ellen‘s character as the classic supportive “dame” in the noirish fiction of this era and sort of forgave these faults. 🤷🏻‍♀️ 4y
saresmoore @JenniferP @Billypar @Liz_M I wasn‘t very surprised by Ellen‘s attachment, either. Not just the clear family connection, but being thrown together in a crisis can foster strong feelings. 4y
Liz_M Clearly race was the main dichotomy explored, but like @Billypar, I was intrigued by the interaction of class-assumptions -- Iris assumes Hugh is rich because he is a doctor driving a white Cadillac; Hugh's discomfort with Houston's wealth and Ellen's ease in Houston's world; the difference it made to Rangle that Hugh was related to Doc Willis. 4y
saresmoore I thought it was an equally effective commentary on class. Down to the subtleties, like Hugh changing his clothes to visit poor neighborhoods in Scottsdale and his thoughts about folks who‘d never been on a plane before. Hugh‘s hyper-self-awareness was a great vehicle for all that commentary without taking away from the story. 4y
JenniferP @Liz_M That's true - they were definitely being “fixed up“. I wonder also if that was a commentary on the relatively small circle of African Americans who had broken into the upper and middle classes at that point in American history. Though there were plenty who deserved to be there, it was still a relatively small percentage who had climbed the ladder. 4y
JenniferP @LeahBergen That's probably one reason I don't read much noir! I like at least one strong female character in every book! 4y
Billypar @Leftcoastzen That one sounds really good - just stacked it. 4y
Leftcoastzen Ellen puzzles me too. Though I agree if they develop her character too much , it slows the pace of the mystery ,but I wanted to know more about her.. But it seemed the racial injustice idea was strong, her father being a judge? Ellen was a proponent of getting a good lawyer quickly.Good point @Liz_M at a wedding in that era , parents and Grandparents wonder who might meet up, get married. 4y
Billypar @LeahBergen @JenniferP That's very true - I love noir, but a lot of times the most interesting female characters are the 'femme fatales'- there's a dearth of good female heroes. Though for this one @saresmoore makes a good point: I can see it being an instant bond brought on by the circumstances. 4y
Leftcoastzen @Billypar it‘s powerful. Had to put it down sometimes , the determination of people to find a better life and what they went through! 4y
vivastory I thought that Ellen was an interesting character. Although her family were in the legal profession, she didn't seem to be as naive as Hugh. Hugh seemed to believe, at first anyways, that the truth would exonerate him. Ellen was more realistic about the importance of truth considering race. As others have said she also urged him to get a good lawyer immediately. She refused to let him go to the dr. alone at the end. Granted, Ellen doesn't have as 4y
vivastory much agency as a character in a contemporary novel, but she also seems to have much more than your typical femme fatale. I think the most effective issue that Hughes tackled was race. And as others have mentioned, class issues, which crime fiction is excellent at addressing. 4y
Reviewsbylola Gosh, there are so many good points made in the comments above. I agree, Ellen‘s instant attachment to High didn‘t make much sense to me, especially given the circumstances. 4y
GatheringBooks similar to @Liz_M @LeahBergen I wasn‘t particularly disturbed by Ellen‘s immediate attraction towards Hugh who was described as a bit of a catch, & he seemed elusive & mysterious, unlike all the other men fawning over her. I also felt that she demonstrated a fair bit of agency. In fact, she seemed the more level-headed, practical, with a let‘s fix it attitude that was realistic, unlike Hugh who seemed too anxious to consider his plight rationally. 4y
GatheringBooks to answer @Liz_M ‘s query, tho, I felt the intersectionality bet race, class, gender are pretty nuanced esp given how the hitchhiker is a poor white girl, Hugh a brilliant Black doctor, add on the white police officers‘ unchecked reflex to pin the blame on Hugh, regardless of what the facts seem to reveal, & the lack of credibility of White witnesses whose testimonies are entertained mainly because they are White and confirm the officers‘ biases. (edited) 4y
Suet624 @JenniferP @billypar I had issues with Ellen's immediate support of Hugh as well. It didn't make sense to me.
(edited) 4y
17 likes23 comments
blurb
Liz_M
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Billypar Yes--at first I thought I was just being unobservant: I had to flip back to see if I missed anything. 4y
JenniferP I was definitely surprised! I actually had to stop and reread the sentence that makes it clear. And then I realized why Hugh had been so nervous about picking up the hitchhiker and why the kids chasing him had bothered him so much. I was sort of upset with myself for making assumptions about race. It made me realize that my default is to assume a character is white. That bothered me and I hope it will shift my expectations in the future. 4y
Billypar It reminded me of Toni Morrison's Paradise - until I read that, I never gave much thought about implicitly assuming a character was white unless told otherwise. And it made me think about how and when writers choose to describe their characters - e.g. how detailed do they need to be, why might they choose to reveal something about the character later in the story? 4y
See All 28 Comments
Billypar @JenniferP Yeah the reveal definitely clarified his anxiety since he picked Iris up. You would have just taken it for granted otherwise, but it forces you to consider the situation in a new light. 4y
Reviewsbylola Shocked! I‘d wondered if I‘d missed something at first, so I‘m glad to see it was intentional. Everything made a lot more sense at that point. 4y
Liz_M @JenniferP @Billypar Yes, as intended by Hughes, I also was surprised on the first read, and the brilliance of holding that critical bit back, of forcing the readers to consciously question their assumptions is why I loved this book. On a second reading, the skillful writing is still impressive, but it is more disheartening to understand how “the twist“ plays a role in Hugh's uneasiness and the plot to follow. 4y
Leftcoastzen I was a shocked a bit too.I am a little paranoid by nature but I thought his anxiety was high.It explained a lot.I thought I missed something too. (edited) 4y
saresmoore It was a slow reveal for me. I was trying to piece it together in my mind from the beginning. Why is he being harassed by teenagers in Indio? Is it a Mexican gang? But then Iris‘ physical appearance was distinctly blonde. I started questioning my (clearly racist) assumptions at the inspection station. Even so, I was still picturing a clean-cut, white, weirdly paranoid doctor until the cops showed up. 4y
LeahBergen I was totally surprised and, like @JenniferP said, a little disappointed in myself for making assumptions! I was suspicion of his anxiety level, too, @Leftcoastzen and automatically assumed he was running from a murder or some other crime he‘d committed. Geez. 🙄 4y
BarbaraBB I was so surprised too, suddenly the scene @JenniferP mentions made sense indeed and I felt so naive for not thinking of it myself. I love it when a book has such an effect on me. 4y
Liz_M @saresmoore Sounds like you were paying more attention to details than I was, and yet Hugh still pulled it off! I was just along for the ride (pun intended). 4y
Liz_M @BarbaraBB I loved this book for the same reason. 😊 4y
emilyhaldi The “surprise” stunned me to the point of pausing to reread several times. It‘s so interesting to me how Hughes crafted that reveal and understood that the majority of readers would make certain racial assumptions. I initially assumed that I must have been in the minority due to my own predispositions perhaps, but it‘s interesting that it sounds like most (all?) of us thought the same, and that in fact Hughes knew that we would.. 4y
Liz_M @emilyhaldi I read a bunch of reviews in order to prepare questions and this seems to be Hughes signature trait -- to write from a perspective very different from her own and to use the unexpected pov to create suspense and surprise plot twists. 4y
emilyhaldi It's a risky objective isn't it! @Liz_M especially considering the era- I appreciate that Hughes was able to write from other POVs so successfully. 4y
JenniferP @emilyhaldi And isn‘t it interesting that 50 years after it was written were still making the same racial assumptions? 4y
vivastory Sorry I'm jumping in late, I had a last minute invite for coffee from my cousin who is rarely in town. 4y
vivastory @Liz_M I agree, Hughes withholding of the info was brilliant & as others have said in the thread it really challenges readers' assumptions 4y
vivastory @JenniferP You're right. Same assumptions. Despite certain dated aspects this book feels even more relevant than when it was reissued in 2012 4y
vivastory To echo other comments, my assumption at the beginning was that he was nervous due to being involved in a crime in the past 4y
Liz_M @vivastory Perfect timing -- tag, you're it! I'm off to do some household chores. 😅 4y
BarbaraBB @emilyhaldi Exactly my thought. I was so afraid I was the only one! 4y
emilyhaldi Yes, it's fascinating!!! @JenniferP 🤯🤯 4y
GatheringBooks @JenniferP @emilyhaldi more than anything, this was what struck me the most: the fact that the entire narrative, with what is ostensibly called the “big reveal” still seems markedly contemporary. how frightening and disturbing the many assumptions and unchecked stereotypes many readers have, including myself, about race, ethnicity, etc (edited) 4y
sisilia I encountered the same as @saresmoore 😘 4y
batsy Yes! Exactly what the rest of you said. I was reading that bit in bed at night and literally sat up! I thought it was so interesting that Hughes immediately implicates the reader in all kinds of maybe subconscious prejudices or biases. And when it was revealed, "Iris Croom's" manner of interacting with him became disturbing. The way in which she assumed he would be ready to what she needed him to do... A strange kind of over-familiarity? 4y
Suet624 I was stunned when I realized how much of an assumption I had made. It was such an effective slap in the face. And it made the story immediately more interesting. 4y
BarbaraBB @batsy I didn‘t think of that but you‘re probably right about Iris‘s assumptions. That is quite disturbing. 4y
19 likes28 comments
review
Billypar
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Mehso-so

Interesting time capsule of a novel: Hughes writes with gritty realism about taboo subjects of her time: undisguised racism on the cusp of the Civil Rights era and the world of back-alley abortions. It was intense to see the MC forced into the detective role to protect both his freedom and reputation. I only wish I enjoyed the mystery itself, which seemed a little flat. I might have liked the ending more if I wasn't reading it as a mystery novel.

Billypar Looking forward to tomorrow's discussion! #nyrbbookclub @Liz_M @vivastory 4y
vivastory Great review 👍 4y
Reviewsbylola This is probably my favorite NYRB book I‘ve read thus far. I‘m really enjoying it, but I can see what you mean about it being a bit flat. 4y
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Billypar @vivastory Thanks! 4y
Billypar @Reviewsbylola Glad you found a new favorite! I was definitely hooked for most of it. 4y
Leftcoastzen @Reviewsbylola @Billypar I like this one but loved the other one by Hughes even more 4y
Billypar @Leftcoastzen I saw the film probably over a decade ago but remember zero about it, so that's perfect for picking up the novel. 4y
Reviewsbylola Thanks, just stacked it! @Leftcoastzen 4y
Suet624 Definitely a time capsule. 4y
41 likes9 comments
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Reviewsbylola
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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My #bathandbook tonight is super fun and colorful!

I‘m in the middle of the tagged book right now for #nyrbbookclub. The bad news is I won‘t finish it in time for tomorrow‘s discussion. The good news is it‘s my favorite NYRB title ever (so far).

Megabooks Pretty bath! 4y
emilyhaldi Ooohhh fav #NYRB ever?! I‘m not sure I could pick!!! 4y
See All 7 Comments
emilyhaldi That would probably be my first choice at this point 😁 4y
Suet624 Favorite ever? That‘s a big statement! I liked this one but I think Cassandra at the Wedding might be my favorite. 4y
Reviewsbylola Cassandra drove me crazy so I just couldn‘t connect with that one. 😆 @Suet624 4y
Suet624 Oh!!! 😂😂😂 4y
81 likes7 comments
review
saresmoore
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I thought this was brilliantly done. Written with the same practiced restraint that defined the main character and told with finesse. It‘s a commentary on many things: human perception, bigotry & prejudice, the tension of development vs. progress. But more than that, I think it‘s just a damn good story. #NYRBBookClub

BarbaraBB Great review. I felt the same! 4y
TrishB Lovely review 👍🏻 4y
LeahBergen I‘m not reading anyone‘s review until I‘m done. 😆 4y
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Cathythoughts Great review! Stacking 4y
batsy @LeahBergen Same, Leah 😂 4y
saresmoore @BarbaraBB @TrishB Thanks, friends! @Cathythoughts I hope you‘ll enjoy it! 4y
saresmoore @LeahBergen @batsy I don‘t blame you! 🙈 4y
85 likes4 stack adds7 comments
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Leftcoastzen
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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It‘s Christmas Eve and Crosby‘s in bed ,
With visions of cat toys dancing in his head.
Me ,reading a mystery,my #NYRBbookClub read,
to finish before Saturday,that‘s what I need.
If you celebrate Christmas,I know some of you do,
Eat,drink ,and be merry,and may all your holiday wishes come true.❄️📚☮️🎄🎅

BarbaraBB Have a lovely evening 💕 4y
Hooked_on_books Excellent poem! 🎄 4y
CarolynM Merry Christmas 🎄 4y
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Tamra Very creative! 😉 4y
batsy It's been so busy with family visiting, my goal is to finish this in time for the discussion and never has reading seemed so impossible 😆 Happy reading and holidays! 💕 4y
Leftcoastzen @batsy thanks,and good luck! 4y
Leftcoastzen @Tamra thanks, it‘s kinda David Pogue CBS Sunday morning level poetry!😂 4y
Suet624 What a lovely post that I‘m just now seeing! Happy New Year! 4y
52 likes1 stack add8 comments
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saresmoore
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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I don‘t know where this is going, but I don‘t like it! #NYRBBookClub

blurb
vivastory
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Join my co-host @Liz_M & I for the final #NYRBBookClub of the year, this Saturday (12/28) at 11 AM EST. I know this is a busy time of year for everyone, but drop in when you're able to & comment your thoughts on this book, or your favorite book that the group has read so far. Happy Holidays!
@BarbaraBB @emilyhaldi @sprainedbrain @mklong @youneverarrived @LeahBergen @Leftcoastzen @merelybookish @MicheleinPhilly @GatheringBooks @saresmoore @sisilia

LeahBergen I‘m looking forward to it! 4y
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vivastory @LeahBergen Me too! I found out earlier today that Hughes was born & raised in KC! 4y
GatheringBooks looking forward to it! 4y
Leftcoastzen I‘ll be there. 4y
youneverarrived Mine still hasn‘t arrived so probably won‘t be able to join 😔 4y
vivastory @youneverarrived I'm sorry to hear that!! I'd be interested in your thoughts when you do read it. 4y
emilyhaldi Woohoo!!! I‘m looking forward to joining in during a lazy Saturday at home 🤗 4y
Reviewsbylola I will be late to the party as I still have to finish the book. I‘m loving it though! 4y
batsy I also haven't finished the book 😭 But I hope to go over the discussion once I'm done with it soon! 4y
Liz_M @Reviewsbylola @batsy If you've made it to chapter three (~page 56), you can answer the first question. 😁 4y
Suet624 Gah!!! Sewage in the basement! I‘ll be on later! (edited) 4y
Leftcoastzen @Suet624 OMG, so sorry.😳😬 4y
vivastory @Suet624 I'm sorry to hear that!! 🙁 4y
62 likes16 comments
review
Suet624
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

Sometimes doing a kind thing will get you in some really hot water. Hughes kept me interested after revealing some details, ones that changed the story for me and also reminded me to challenge myself when making assumptions. So much is at stake for the main character as he endeavors to protect himself. The descriptions of time and place held me in the heat of the southern summer and the feeling of being in a small town.
#NYRBbookclub

vivastory Wonderful review Sue! There was definitely a great feeling of time and place with this one, with certain themes that are still very much relevant today. 4y
Suet624 @vivastory Thanks. It was really quite good and still so relevant. 4y
LauraBeth This is a great review! 4y
See All 6 Comments
Suet624 @LauraBeth Thanks so much! 4y
saresmoore Great review, Sue! It really is evocative of setting. I‘ve spent some time in that Phoenix heat and I can feel it as I read. 4y
Suet624 @saresmoore thanks Sara. Have a wonderful day today. 💕💕 4y
53 likes1 stack add6 comments
review
vivastory
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

Things are not as they appear in this gem by Dorothy Hughes that has a great deal to say about class, gender & race. Hughes take on the wrong man trope is one of the better, & clever, I've recently read & her character portraits are given greater nuance by their motivations.
#NYRBBookClub

saresmoore Great review! I think the breadth of your reading over the past year has added to your contributions in the NYRB discussions. I really appreciate your insights! 4y
vivastory @saresmoore Thanks! I've always been pretty eclectic, but I've definitely been more so over the past year or so. There's just so many different genres I'm interested in I don't want to be tied down 4y
BarbaraBB I am happy you liked it too. And agreeing with @saresmoore 💕 4y
79 likes1 stack add3 comments
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LeahBergen
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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I had to force myself off the jolly holiday reads to start this but I‘m now on chapter three and thoroughly engrossed. 👍🏻

#NYRBBookClub
@vivastory @Liz_M

Eyelit Ooh, that‘s a good one! Enjoy 4y
Leftcoastzen I‘m on chapter 4 ! She was in Phoenix for sure.Street names accurate and some of the places real. 4y
Cathythoughts Sounds good 👍🏻❤️... I might give it a try 4y
See All 12 Comments
TrishB And another lovely picture ❤️ 4y
saresmoore I‘ll be making the switch today, too. I‘m grumpy about it, but I know I‘ll enjoy it. 🙃 4y
mklong @saresmoore Same! I have a couple of Christmasy short stories that I‘ll read on breaks from this so I won‘t have to totally give up my festive reads. 4y
vivastory @Leftcoastzen I've thought of you while reading it. Glad to hear it's accurate. I can just feel the heat. 4y
vivastory @saresmoore The first 55 pages are a bit tedious, but they are worth it. 4y
vivastory @mklong I was planning on reading at least one festive book this year & I don't think I'll make it 4y
emilyhaldi This book was a fun ride!! 4y
rubyslippersreads I recognize that bookmark. 😊 4y
LeahBergen @rubyslippersreads You are a very good bookmark gifter! 😘 This book starts in Los Angeles so ... 😆😆 4y
79 likes12 comments
quote
Billypar
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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#nyrbbookclub
I never heard of this phrase, but I like it and may begin using it 😁

Cathythoughts Nice one 👍🏻❤️ 4y
TrishB Never heard that, but you instantly know what it means! 4y
vivastory I love incorporating new phrases 😂 How are you liking the book? I'm halfway through & I think it's fantastic so far 4y
Billypar @TrishB Exactly- no explanation required! 4y
Billypar @vivastory I'm intrigued, but still a little early (page 46). I'm with family for the holidays, so not too conducive to reading, but hopefully I can find some time to sneak away 🙂 4y
40 likes5 comments
review
merelybookish
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Bailedbailed

I'm giving up. 🤷 I've been trying to read this for a few weeks now but still only 50 pages in. I find the writing tedious and the plot is making me anxious. Maybe that's the point but it's also probaly why I don't read much crime fiction.
Sorry #nyrbbookclub! This is my Sleepless Nights. @vivastory @Liz_M

Liz_M I am sorry you didn't enjoy this! 🙁 But if you want to hang out and chat about it, I recommend the 2012 New Yorker review for this book / Dorothy Hughes. 4y
merelybookish @Liz_M Thanks! I will try to do that,! I did enjoy some of the class and regional elements. I appreciate.crime fiction pays attention to those things. But I just don't enjoy being in suspense, I guess. 4y
BarbaraBB Ah too bad. For me it was a surprising read and I really enjoyed it. 4y
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merelybookish @BarbaraBB I know. I usually like these choices. And it might be my mood. I don't seem to have patience for it. 4y
vivastory Maybe just wrong time to read it. I agree that crime is able to tackle class & regional elements very effectively. 4y
LeahBergen “This is my Sleepless Nights”. 😂😂😂 Bail away, I say! 4y
vivastory Did you make it to the plot twist? I just reached that part this morning. I think it's around page 56. It definitely puts the first part of the book in a new perspective. 4y
merelybookish @vivastory No. I made it to page 51. 🤨 So I will go back and read the twist. Give it another try! 4y
vivastory I think it's worth it. I respect your bail, but I also feel like I should give you a heads up on the twist. Things really take off around page 60. 4y
saresmoore It is anxiety-inducing, to be sure, but I felt that the tedium of those first 60 pages really embroiled me in the plot & setting with the MC. I‘m sucked in now! 4y
52 likes10 comments
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JenniferP
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Reading this #nyrb book for the December group read and totally wrapped up in it. I think it will be a quick read. #nyrbbookclub

BarbaraBB Are you enjoying it? I was surprised by the twist, hadn‘t thought of it 😊 4y
JenniferP Yes, I was surprised! It put a different spin on his reactions and clarified some things. I‘m about half way through now. I think it will be a quick read. @BarbaraBB 4y
vivastory @BarbaraBB I'm halfway through the book now & the twist completely threw me! But it put everything else in perspective 4y
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BarbaraBB @vivastory It did! I felt so naive not thinking of it before. 4y
Suet624 @vivastory @BarbaraBB I literally gasped at the plot twist and was annoyed and surprised that I had made an assumption. I still think about it. (edited) 4y
JenniferP @Suet624 Agreed! I've finished the book and though I thought the unfolding of events was a little unrealistic and I didn't love the relationship between Ellen and Hugh, the cultural significance was so well-done that I liked the book anyway! 4y
23 likes6 comments
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Suet624
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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#NYRBbookclub I‘m embarrassed to admit that until I neared the end I thought the title of this book was The Expandable Man. I even questioned why Hughes would have titled the book in such a way. I looked at the cover often and still read it incorrectly. My eyes played tricks on me repeatedly and I‘m still feeling a bit spooked by it. 🤦🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️

Aimeesue That's awesome! 😂 4y
britt_brooke 😆😆 4y
erzascarletbookgasm 😁 Initially I read as expandable too. 4y
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youneverarrived I‘ve been thinking this too! 😂 4y
Suet624 @youneverarrived I‘m so very glad to hear. It kind of freaked me out. 4y
Johnyx Hey 4y
Jeg I just did what you did on first look, then I read your comment.😊 4y
Suet624 @Jeg I think the A underneath the E merges or flips or something. Weird. 😀 4y
vivastory 😂 I've misread a few titles before 4y
50 likes1 stack add10 comments
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Leftcoastzen
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Crosby is ready for bed .Even though it‘s late I need to start my #NYRBBookclub title.📚I read In a Lonely Place about a year ago and loved it.High hopes for this one too!

batsy I need to start soon, too 😅 4y
Leftcoastzen @batsy I love her writing style , snarky noir! If you are ever in Indio, Ca. get a date shake ! Yummy! (edited) 4y
LeahBergen And I need to start soon, too. 😬 4y
Liz_M I hope you enjoy it! 4y
Suet624 Just starting it and love the feel of it so far. 4y
55 likes5 comments
review
sisilia
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

3⭐️ Hugh Densmore was just being helpful. Unfortunately, his kind heart didn‘t receive good things in return. I‘m sure most of us have been in such situation. How annoying, right?! I was rooting for Hugh all the way, and I found it pleasant that such simple story line could jack up my anxiety. The ending is missing that additional oomph, though. I wish it was not that anti-climatic 😑 #nyrbbookclub

vivastory Halfway through now & loving it so far. Great review! 4y
55 likes1 comment
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sisilia
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Oopsie again

julesG 🙈 4y
marleed Ooh dang. 4y
Mdargusch So awful! 4y
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Meghan1 🤦‍♀️ 4y
Susanita 😳 4y
ValerieAndBooks Some people do talk like that though ... 😬 4y
sisilia @ValerieAndBooks Yeah it‘s pretty common 😄 and nothing‘s wrong with that; but in writing, “wouldn‘t of” has no meaning as it should be “wouldn‘t ‘ve” 4y
teebe It‘s dialogue? I think it‘s just replicating the way people talk 🤷🏻‍♀️ Sort of like when people indicate accented English by changing the spelling. 4y
CoverToCoverGirl Yikes! 🙈 4y
Suet624 I‘m with @teebe on this. It was dialogue and I actually felt that it offered authenticity. 4y
36 likes10 comments
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emilyhaldi
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Mixing it up with this #NYRBclassic and a #Persephone bookmark- two favs 💞

#NYRBBookclub

vivastory How are you liking it so far? 4y
merelybookish Im hoping to start this later in the week! 4y
Reviewsbylola I probably won‘t start this for a few more weeks. 4y
See All 9 Comments
Mdargusch I got the same book mark. 💜 4y
LeahBergen A perfect blend! 😉 4y
emilyhaldi @vivastory I'm hooked!! I love the noir vibes and writing style 🖤 4y
BarbaraBB It‘s good isn‘t it? I was blown away by the twist. Hadn‘t seen it coming - call me naive 4y
emilyhaldi I need to get back to it!! @BarbaraBB only about 50 pages in 😬 but I‘m on edge reading it... something‘s gotta blow up but I don‘t know what! 4y
BarbaraBB It will, soon! 4y
64 likes9 comments
blurb
sisilia
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Oops, stationery vs stationary mistake here

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Yes!! I know I am guilty of that!! 😫😫 4y
Leftcoastzen 🤦‍♀️ 4y
TrishB This one always drives me bonkers! @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks it‘s E for envelope 😁 4y
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LeahBergen @TrishB That‘s how I learned it, too. 😆 4y
TrishB @LeahBergen I can still hear my teacher 😁 4y
sisilia @Trish @LeahBergen @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks That‘s an excellent way to fix the confusion 👍🏻😄 4y
Reggie @TrishB I had never heard that!! We got two s‘s in dessert stand for sweet strawberries. Not desert which is not sweet at all. Lol 4y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks @TrishB thank you!! I‘ll remember that!! 4y
sisilia @Reggie Sweet 🍓That‘s wonderful! 😄 4y
TrishB @Reggie that‘s a good one 👍🏻 4y
Liz_M @Reggie I got it as dessert has more "s-es" because you want more ?????? 4y
Leftcoastzen That always drives me nuts ! 4y
50 likes14 comments
blurb
Theaelizabet
Expendable Man (Revised) | Dorothy B Hughes
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BarbaraBB Maybe it‘s for the best I don‘t live in the US 😂 4y
batsy @BarbaraBB Hahaha, I was just thinking the same 😆 4y
LeahBergen Damn! Too bad (or not?) that I live in Canada. 😆 4y
31 likes3 comments
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vivastory
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Thanks to @Leftcoastzen for co-hosting in November. I want to thank everyone in the group. Yesterday was yet another great discussion, our group had a lot to talk about & I finished with an even deeper appreciation of Moore's novel.
Up next is Dorothy Hughes' "Expendable Man". I'm looking forward to co-hosting with fellow #1001books reader @Liz_M
I can't wait to see what books you nominate @merelybookish
#NYRBBookClub

Suet624 Just ordered my copy yesterday! The discussion yesterday was 👍👍🤓🤓😍😍 4y
vivastory @Suet624 I'm not going to lie, our discussions are really special. Always respectful, I always come away with new insights & perspectives. They've become one of my favorite bookish moments of the month 4y
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merelybookish Oooh I'm excited! Will try to have selections ready in the next few days. 4y
Leftcoastzen Thanks to you for your coordination of the book club , love all the books, love all the discussions! 4y
GatheringBooks looking forward to the discussion for this one! finished reading it a few weeks back and can‘t wait to read everyone‘s thoughts. 4y
LeahBergen Yesterday‘s discussion was fantastic (as usual). I‘m really looking forward to this one! 👏🏻👏🏻 4y
BarbaraBB I really love our discussions and our book choices! I have already read this one but am sure we‘ll have another great discussion about it. 4y
vivastory @BarbaraBB I don't remember if I asked, but have you read 4y
vivastory @BarbaraBB I loved it 4y
BarbaraBB You haven‘t asked and I haven‘t read it but I am stacking immediately! 4y
vivastory @BarbaraBB I thought it was brilliant feminist noir 4y
saresmoore Yes, looking forward to this and I also really appreciated the discussion on Judith! 4y
batsy I love how @Leftcoastzen put it about our discussions, that everyone is empathetic to the human condition ❤️ It's the best. I'm really looking forward to this one; she's been on my list of authors to check out. 4y
youneverarrived It was a great discussion and what a memorable book. I‘m going to order this one in a bit 😁 4y
JenniferP When is the discussion for this? I'm new to following along and not sure how it works, but I want to see if I can fit this book in before you all discuss. @Liz_M 4y
Liz_M @JenniferP Usually the last weekend in the month. Scott and i need to confirm the date/time. 4y
vivastory @Liz_M I sent you a message on Goodreads about it today. I'm open for either this weekend or the final weekend. 4y
JenniferP @Liz_M thank you! 4y
Suet624 I‘m a bit behind on this one with all the holiday hoo-haw and impeachment hearings. I was actually wondering if others were too. The last Saturday would be better for me if possible. 4y
56 likes20 comments
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sisilia
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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The book matches the flask 😂

Starting this for Dec #nyrbbookclub 🥰

Nute I want a yellow Hydro Flask!💛🍋🌼 4y
vivastory I'm really looking forward to reading this one, I loved 4y
sisilia @Nute The best color! Impossible to be out of sight 😂 4y
sisilia This is my first Hughes @vivastory and I‘m curious 😃 4y
batsy I love the matchy-matchy 😆💛 4y
71 likes1 stack add5 comments
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vivastory
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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All the votes are in & Hughes' "Expendable Man" barely wins, with 2 more votes than Modiano's "In the Cafe of Lost Youth". I loved "In a Lonely Place" & I'm looking forward to reading this one. Join fellow 1,001 Books enthusiast @Liz_M & myself for the December #NYRBBookClub readalong & monthly discussion.

BarbaraBB I just read this one in the Persephone edition. Such a great book. Just one thing: don‘t google this book! Read nothing about it. Just dive in. That‘ll make it so much better! 5y
vivastory @BarbaraBB Thanks for the heads-up!! Now that you mention it I see that my edition has an afterword, not a foreword, by Mosley. Usually indicates some sort of twist. 5y
See All 19 Comments
Aimeesue @BarbaraBB I'm glad you mentioned the Persephone edition - I'd just checked my NYRBs and didn't have it, but I do have the Persephone! I would have missed it. 😋 (edited) 5y
LeahBergen Yay!! 👏🏻👏🏻 And thanks for the heads up, @BarbaraBB ! 5y
Liz_M ~happy dance~ I was hoping his one would win! 🤗 5y
MicheleinPhilly 🎉 I actually have this one already and haven‘t read it! Need to get my butt back in gear as I‘ve been a delinquent clubber. 5y
emilyhaldi Yay!!! Excited for this one. And as it‘s not already sitting on my shelf I suppose it‘s time for another book order 🤭😜💸 5y
KT1432 Eek!! I almost picked this for one of my #LMPBC picks! So excited I'll be reading it for this book club!! 5y
saresmoore Darn, I don‘t own this one yet... Just kidding, obviously. I‘m looking forward to it! 😃 5y
GatheringBooks perfect! i just borrowed it on overdrive! looking forward to reading it!!! 5y
vivastory @Liz_M I'm really looking forward to reading it 5y
vivastory @MicheleinPhilly It happens! I think we've talked about In a Lonely Place? I'm hoping for a similar experience. 5y
vivastory @emilyhaldi 😄Glad to enable..help 5y
vivastory @lele1432 Glad you'll be joining us again! 5y
vivastory @saresmoore 😂I should count my NYRB collection... 5y
vivastory @GatheringBooks Same here! I loved In a Lonely Place 👍 5y
sisilia And i still haven‘t read 🙈 (edited) 5y
batsy Nice! I've always wanted to read this one, too! 5y
69 likes2 stack adds19 comments
review
BarbaraBB
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Pickpick

I knew nothing about this book except that some of my peers here recommend it (looking at you @Liz_M 😀) and that I can‘t resist Persephone. Diving in unprepared is what made this highly suspenseful noir so powerful. I can‘t say too much. Just read it. And don‘t read reviews on forehand. Dorothy Hughes made me feel how the main character must have felt. Impressive!

#ReadIngUSA2019 #Arizona
(Pic: San Francisco)

MicheleinPhilly Pretty sure I have the NYRB version of this! 5y
Leftcoastzen I‘d rather be in Alamo square than in Arizona where it‘s going to be be about 50 degrees hotter than SF. (edited) 5y
BarbaraBB @MicheleinPhilly Yes! There is a NYRB as well as a Persephone edition! 5y
See All 10 Comments
BarbaraBB @Leftcoastzen Sharp eye! Temperature here is perfect 😘 5y
Leftcoastzen I am ex Bay Area person ,Az is too hot.Enjoy your trip! 5y
Liz_M I am so glad you loved it as much as i do! I thought Hughes wrote a most excellent set up. 😍 5y
Tamra I just read the first sentence of the blurb and I‘m sold! 5y
Librarybelle 👍 5y
BarbaraBB @Tamra I am sure you‘ll love it! 5y
ValerieAndBooks Can‘t mistake those SF Victorians 💖. Looking forward to following your trip! 5y
73 likes6 stack adds10 comments
blurb
Liz_M
Expendable Man (Revised) | Dorothy B Hughes
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Living in NYC, I have managed to amass 121 #nyrb books, 103 of which are unread. 😁 Pictured are some of my favorites. @vivastory #nyrbbookclub

Billypar Oh wow...I have 2 😂 That must be a gorgeous shelf! 5y
Billypar Well, *shelves* clearly. Or 'bookcases'. 5y
Theaelizabet Wow! I have quite a few, but you sure beat me. I loved Troubles and have The Siege of Krishnapur, but have yet to get to it. Same with The Long Ships. (edited) 5y
See All 19 Comments
BarbaraBB Unbelievable!! Please share a picture 😍. And I see all of those #1001books published by NYRB. So much more attractive than my editions! 5y
BarbaraBB And last but not least: an ultimate favorite?! 5y
vivastory You have made me feel so much better about my unread pile of NYRB! 😄I have The Long Ships, still TBR 😬 Have you read Hughes' In a Lonely Place? I've loved seeing all of the love for Hughes 5y
arubabookwoman I‘ve only read the 3 on the left, but they‘re among my favorites too. I just bought the 2 volume NYRB edition of Anniversaries, from the 1001 list. I think it was only issued fairly recently by them. 5y
Liz_M @Billypar It was several shelves, arranged by title so there wasn't too much of one color in one place. At the moment it is 1.5 boxes. I hate moving. 😡 5y
Liz_M @BarbaraBB I'll have to see if I have a picture of one of the previous arrangements. ☺ 5y
Liz_M @Theaelizabet 😁 😁 I had to stop visiting Housing Works Used Bookstore because I finally tab out of room for all my nyrb and other books. 5y
Liz_M @vivastory I haven't read Lonely Place. And glad to help others feel better about their book collections 😁 5y
Liz_M @arubabookwoman It was released in Oct 2018. I bought an advance copy at the Sept 2018 Brooklyn Book Festival and then cursed myself for lugging around so many heavy books (I also got several volumes of My Struggle) 5y
batsy What a collection 🙌🏽 5y
sisilia Wow wow! I‘d, too, keep buying NYRB Classics if I lived in NYC. I own 77 and have read 17 😆 I will be in the city end of this month and will definitely hunt for more 5y
CafeMom I loved Season of Migration. 5y
Liz_M @sisilia The Strand will have quite a few nyrb titles for half price,, so bring a list of the ones you most want and try your luck! I actually bought most of mine at Housing Works Used Bookstore & Cafe. The first weekend of every month there is an additional 30% off the already less-than-full-priced books. I would scan the shelves for the distinctive logo on the spin and buy as many as I could! 5y
Liz_M @batsy I love it. Except now that I am moving (again) and so I curse my collection. 5y
Liz_M @CafeMom 😀 5y
sisilia @Liz_M Thanks for the tips!! 5y
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rabbitprincess
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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The protagonist drives to Phoenix rather than Tucson, Arizona, but that still fits the metre for #GetBack 😉
#HeyJune

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rabbitprincess
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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My top 20 for 2017. I read history, books about and featuring and written by amazing women, some great audiobooks, and some surprising mysteries.

Liz_M The Expendable Man is a fantastic read! 6y
rabbitprincess @Liz_M It was so good! Couldn't put it down but had to, in order to catch my breath! 6y
28 likes2 comments
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Oftencantdecide
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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#BookMail- Since I loved 'In A Lonely Place' so much, I had to get the other novel by Hughes that #NYRB has republished.

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rabbitprincess
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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Endpaper from the Persephone Books edition of The Expendable Man. I agree with @LeahBergen -- Persephone really knows their stuff endpaper-wise!
#readjanuary

LeahBergen They sure do. 😀 7y
Lacythebookworm 🙌😍 7y
23 likes2 comments
review
rabbitprincess
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
Pickpick

This was so good! A book that you can't put down because you need to find out what happens, but one that you need to put down in order to catch your breath. Hughes is an excellent writer of suspense.

Eyelit One of my favorites! 7y
rabbitprincess @Eyelit Very glad that Persephone Books reprinted it, and that my library chose to stock it! 7y
14 likes2 comments
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rabbitprincess
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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For some reason I am astounded to find a Persephone Books edition of a novel at my public library. It's so pretty! Had to borrow it despite it not being on my tbr list 😁

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BostonBookAddict
The Expendable Man | Dorothy B. Hughes
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New York Review of Books is having a summer sale and of course I had to partake. I got the One# the Run Thrillers and World War II in Fiction bundles. Completely opposite sides of the spectrum but 2 of my favorite kinds of books. Not my typical book choices but they all seem interesting so why not expand my reading :-)

MrBook What...what is this now? How do you find these great bookish places? Love this stack. 8y
5 likes1 comment