He trafficked in rum and women, this modern-day Al Capone. Clifton Adam's famous tale of bootlegging in Oklahoma, 20 years after Prohibition's repeal in 47 other states. Legendary to this day for its dark account of a man on the wrong side of the tracks out to get what's his, any way he can....
|Title||:||Whom Gods Destroy|
|Number of Pages||:||172 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Whom Gods Destroy Reviews
This is the first title I've read by Clifton Adams, and I was entertained and impressed enough to award him the whole monte of 5 (count 'em) stars. The PBO is a Gold Medal Books entry from 1953, and that grabs my attention right off. I knew Adams wrote some first rate Westerns, but I didn't know he also worked in the hardboiled/noir genre. As you can well-imagine from the title, the protagonist, one Roy Foley from Big Prarie, Oklahoma, is headed for a bad place with a lot of mean road before he arrives there. The novel's set up works nicely: Roy working as a fry cook in a distant city gets the telegram to return home for his dead father's funeral. Once Roy gets back to Big Prarie, he finds out his old flame Lola buried his dad as a charity case. Lola the Ice Princess is Roy's flashpoint. She laughed him out of town some years before, and he's grown to despise her. Vengeance is his prime motivator to plot and then make a power grab for the local bootleggers'(Oklahoma is a dry state) empire, partly run by Lola's husband, Paul Keating, the corrupt, weakling county attorney. The big Roy, a former high school football standout, isn't the brightest guy and suffers a few setbacks. I can easily envision Sterling Hayden playing Roy Foley in a film noir. I didn't find Roy a sympathetic character, but I was intrigued to follow his schemes to become the top dog. Roy's beleaguered wife Vida suffers along with him. This is a very satisfying noir done in the typical 1950s style with fast action, bleak vision, and lots of double-crosses and tricks.
A Gold Medal from 1953, this is the story of the rise and fall of Roy Foley, born on the wrong side of the tracks in Big Prairie, Oklahoma and forever trying to cross them. He could outfight those boys, was smarter than all of them. It didn't matter. He was still less than nothing.It was football that gave him a chance. In high school, he became the celebrated quarterback, the one colleges were scouting. He had his life planned. College, then law school.And there was Lola, the beautiful girl he'd secretly worshiped since both were nine years old. Roy invited her to a dance, she declines, saying she'd already been asked. But come, we'll dance a lot.He did and they did and on the patio over cokes, Roy told Lola how he felt about her, his plans for them.And she laughed at him!He fled, leaving town, The end of high school, college, law school, the wedding.Fourteen years later, he's a fry cook in a small joint, all of that forgotten, until the telegram arrived from his aunt telling him his father has died. He grabs a bus with a small bag and four hundred dollars, everything he owned, arriving just after the funeral and burial, learning it had been paid for by the Christian Ladies Aid, a local charity. Vowing to pay it all back, however long it might take, Roy calls the charity and asks about it. The chairman is the wife of the county attorney, Mrs. Lola Keating.Ready to flee again, he bumps into an old friend from Burk Street, that wrong side of town, Sid. Big dumb Sid. Driving a fancy red convertible, an expensive suit, living in a big house, he had a blond wife that went with all that.An idea is born. Sid is a bootlegger. Though prohibition had ended twenty years before, a couple of states, Oklahoma one of them, had retained it. Sid was a retailer and Roy wangles his way in as a deliveryman, maintaining he wants to get his feet wet, that he can get his hands on a large sum of money(he can't).The hatred he had thought buried had re-emerged and was stronger than ever, was growing. His long range plans was to get big in the game in order to punish Lola.Crooked politicians, cops everywhere. Roy intended to bring them down and take over the town. He's constantly reaching for more with every victory or setback.And as the title implies...Pretty good crime novel from the fifties.
Roy Foley ran away from poverty in Big Prairie, Oklahoma, to make something of himself. Years later, he's slinging hash and burgers as a short order cook in a highway diner. His father's death leads to his return to Big Prairie, where he tries to pass himself off as a big shot, but he can keep the act going for so long. He lands a job as a bootlegger for his friend, Sid, but Roy's ambitions are much greater. He wants to take over the liquor racket in Big Prairie, ruin the girl who laughed at him, and prove to everyone that he is a somebody. But for a person like Roy, who is all anger all the time, getting what he wants is never going to be enough.I was already familiar with Clifton Adams's western books. This is the first noir novel I read by him, and I was thoroughly impressed. His writing was a bit rougher than David Goodis or James M. Cain, but his story was full of dark shadows and impending doom. Adams was from Oklahoma but this story could have been set in any big city or small town. I was hoping for a more Okie feel that you get in a Jim Thompson book. What you get here is mean grittiness, and it's a real treat.
Great readMy first pulp novel. Pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this novel. I'm looking forward to reading more from this author and reading more pulp fiction.
Hated it. Probably the last book by Clifton Adams I read. Enough pulp fiction for a while.