Englischsprachige Literatur

Burke James Lee

Creole Belle

Simon&Schuster, New York 2012


This is the 20th Dave Robicheaux novel. Burke wrote it at the age of 74 and it shows. All his narrative elan is wearing off, the story seems to be a far echo of the creative and stilistic prowess J.L. Burke has been famous for. Like the late paintings of Picasso the novel seems crude, overly violent and rather exhibitionistic, as if Burke does not trust his story-telling ability any more and so has to lay on too thick colours of narrative painting.

He tells the story in the first person with Dave and from the ommniscient narrative aspect for Dave´s counterpart Clete, his former colleague at NOPD, now a private eye, wheras Dave works as PD again.

Burke packs everything into the book, which he can think of: Oil spill in the Gulf, sex and drug trade, a 90 year old Nazi, who is behind all the overflowing atrocities which Burke describes in loving abhorrable detail.

And he lets the unwilling reader participate in his private philosophy of the world as generally evil, apart from Dave Robicheaux, of course, and his creator.

Time to say good-bye to a once great writer.