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by Chester Himes

  • ISBN: 0586028706
  • Category: Fiction
  • Author: Chester Himes
  • Subcategory: United States
  • Other formats: txt mbr azw rtf
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Panther Book; paperback / softback edition (1969)
  • Pages: 158 pages
  • FB2 size: 1134 kb
  • EPUB size: 1312 kb
  • Rating: 4.2
  • Votes: 481
Download A Rage in Harlem fb2

The lecturer introduced the author, Chester Himes, as an African-American writer who addressed American racism through his detective stories featuring his Harlem detectives Gravedigger Jones and Coffin Ed Johnson. Himes eventually left America and American racism for France.

A Rage in Harlem book. Chester Himes was born in Jefferson City, Missouri in a middle class family. Both of his parents were teachers. He was accepted and expelled from Ohio State University.

This is my first book by Chester Himes and I loved it! It was exciting, well-written, darkly comic, and unexpectedly absurd while still being hard-boiled to its core

This is my first book by Chester Himes and I loved it! It was exciting, well-written, darkly comic, and unexpectedly absurd while still being hard-boiled to its core. Because of his love for his sexy lady-friend, the loose, conniving, high-yellow Imabelle ( She smelled of burnt hair-grease, hot-bodied woman, and dime-store perfume. simple and square working man Jackson loses all of his money to some con men, setting off a chain reaction that leads to a funeral home robbery, acid throwing, a runaway hearse, and a plot.

A rage in Harlem, Chester Himes. 1st Vintage Books ed. p. c. (Vintage crime, Black Lizard)

A rage in Harlem, Chester Himes. (Vintage crime, Black Lizard). Originally published as: For love of Imabelle.

CHESTER B. HIMES A Biography By Lawrence P. Jackson Illustrated. 606 pp. W. Norton & Company. Seemingly overnight, Himes was reborn as a commercial and critical success in France. Himes attributed European interest in his detective novels to his pivoting away from realism and racial protest and toward a more spectacular and cinematic depiction of black life.

Chester Bomar Himes (July 29, 1909 – November 12, 1984) was a black American writer. His works include If He Hollers Let Him Go and the Harlem Detective series. In 1958 he won France's Grand Prix de Littérature Policière. Chester Himes was born. In 1958 he won France's Grand Prix de Littérature Policière

A RAGE IN HARLEM by Chester Himes.

A RAGE IN HARLEM by Chester Himes. Published in the United States by Vintage Books, a division of Random House, In. New York. Originally published in Great Britain by Allison & Busby in 1985. First published in the . as For Love of Imabelle.

He was in a slow sweat from the crown of his burr head to the white soles of his black feet e.

He was in a slow sweat from the crown of his burr head to the white soles of his black feet e, hoping nothing would go wrong now that he had rescued it from those thugs. He was steering with one hand, crossing himself with the other. One moment he was praying, Lord, don’t quit me no. .The next he was moaning the lowdown blues: If trouble was moneyI’d be a millionaire. A patrol car passed him, headed toward the precinct station, going like a bat out of hell.

A dark and witty work of hardboiled detective fiction set in the mean streets of New York, Chester Himes's A Rage in Harlem includes an introduction by Luc Sante in Penguin Modern Classics. Jackson's woman has found him a foolproof way to make money - a technique for turning ten dollar bills into hundreds. But when the scheme somehow fails, Jackson is left broke, wanted by the police and desperately racing to get back both his money and his loving Imabelle.

Column Covers New York Police The Blacklist Mystery Thriller Pulp Fiction Paperback Books Chester Rage Catapult. Saved by. Welcome to Harlem. e-Book Cover Design Award Winner for October 2017 in Fiction A Man with One of Those Faces designed by Emir Orucevic JF: Approaching perfection by perfectly embodying the themes of the book in the graphic image and title on the cover. Also consider the impact made by not showing a face, and the artful use of type, figure, and ground.

1st Panther 1965 edition paperback vg condition. In stock shipped from our UK warehouse
Reviews about A Rage in Harlem (7):
felt boot
This is a surprising and captivating story. I picked it up after it was discussed in a Great Course lecture on mystery writing. The lecturer introduced the author, Chester Himes, as an African-American writer who addressed American racism through his detective stories featuring his Harlem detectives Gravedigger Jones and Coffin Ed Johnson. Himes eventually left America and American racism for France.

The book was surprising because while Gravedigger and Coffin Ed do make an appearance, and play key roles, in fact, they are featured in probably no more than 10% of the book. The real protagonist is a "square" named Jackson who is swindled by his girlfriend in a con involving "raising" ten dollar bills to one hundred dollar bills, and then swindled by a fake detective into robbing his boss, the undertaker, Mr. H. Exodus Clay, which leads him into looking up his brother Goldie, who makes a living as a cross-dressing "Sister of Mercy," which leads to murders, swindles, and running around Harlem. One thing leads to another and about 50% of the way in, the story rips into high-gear where it is almost impossible to take a breather.

Another thing that surprised me was how funny the book was. On the one hand, the story was slapstick and played with stereotypes of fat black men, getting out of breath, getting wedged between walls, and the like. At times, I felt that the story was moving into an uncomfortable racism as characters dropped into a kind of "Stepp'n Fetchit" dialect and demeanor when confronted by white police authority. Likewise, if an author who was not African-American had written such a square and stupid character like Jackson, there would be quick charges of racism. (Let's not get started on the sexism, which was not even a thing that drew a moment's notice when this novel was written.)

But getting past all of the political correctness drilled in during the last fifty years, I found myself laughing at parts...and cringing at the violence at other parts. (The scene where Jackson seeks absolution from Reverend Gaines was particularly funny.)

I was also stunned by Himes' writing. His descriptions are captivating and downright lyrical. Here's an example:

"At street level the hot, brightly-lit waiting room was crammed with wooden benches, news-stands, lunch counters, slot machines, ticket windows, and aimless people. At the rear a double stairway ascended to the loading platform, with toilets underneath. Behind, out of sight, difficult to locate, impossible to get to, was the baggage room.

The surrounding area was choked with bars, flea-ridden flophouses called hotels, all-night cafetarias, hop dens, whorehouses, gambling joints, catering to all the whims of nature. Black and white folks rubbed shoulders day and night, over the beer-wet bars, getting red-eyed and rambunctious from the ruckus juice and fist-fighting in the street between the passing cars.

They sat side by side in the neon glare of the food factories, eating things from the steam tables that had no resemblance to food.

Whores buzzed about the area like green flies over stewing chitterlings."

I listened to this as an audiobook by Samuel L. Jackson, who did a superb job of reading, although his white characters all sounded a bit like Don Adams.
Mr Freeman
This is my first book by Chester Himes and I loved it! It was exciting, well-written, darkly comic, and unexpectedly absurd while still being hard-boiled to its core. Because of his love for his sexy lady-friend, the loose, conniving, high-yellow Imabelle (“She smelled of burnt hair-grease, hot-bodied woman, and dime-store perfume.”), simple and square working man Jackson loses all of his money to some con men, setting off a chain reaction that leads to a funeral home robbery, acid throwing, a runaway hearse, and a plot involving a trunk full of 18-karat gold ore. In order to navigate this dangerous terrain, Jackson gets the help of his resourceful twin brother Goldy, who makes his living impersonating a Sister of Mercy nun, soliciting bogus charity donations and selling tickets to heaven on the streets of Harlem.

Sounds awesome doesn't it? It gets even better.

Here's a sample:

"She held him at arms’ length, looked at the pipe still gripped in his hand, then looked at his face and read him like a book. She ran the tip of her red tongue slowly across her full cushiony, sensuous lips, making them wet-red and looked him straight in the eyes with her own glassy, speckled bedroom eyes.

The man drowned.

When he came up, he stared back, passion cocked, his whole black being on a live-wire edge. Ready! Solid ready to cut throats, crack skulls, dodge police, steal hearses, drink muddy water, live in a hollow log, and take any rape-fiend chance to be once more in the arms of his high-yellow heart.”
Dammy
The recent beautiful reissue of Chester Himes's Harlem Detectives series prompted me to buy this, the first in the series, and turned me on to the entire collection. Himes was an extremely sophisticated novelist with a tremendous gift for description and evoking violent action, and in this book he seems not only to break many of the rules for the hard-boiled detective novel but also to create his own that would later serve him well. His central character in this book is neither of his two detective partners, Coffin Ed Johnson and Grave Digger Jones, who will recur in his other mysteries, but rather a splendid dupe of a man named Jackson who seems born for con men to prey upon. As the novel begins, Jackson is being duped by a classic con (the promise of changing ten dollar bills to hundred dollar bills) through the machinations of the devil in a red dress who has thoroughly seduced him, Imabelle. When the oven in his Harlem apartment where the alchemy is supposed to take place blows up, Jackson keeps getting in further and further into trouble: he winds up stealing money from his boss to silence a cop who comes out of nowhere immediately after the explosion, and then loses it all gambling before he can make the payoff. He doesn't even realize the cop is part of the con until he goes for help to his brother Goldy, a junkie who hides his own shady dealings by dressing up as a nun when walking the streets of Harlem. And he refuses to believe that Imabelle is capable of treachery, even when the facts stare him right in the face. The suspense of the novel is not generated by who did what so much as by whether Jackson can possibly get out of trouble, whether he will ever face the truth about Imabelle, and indeed whether Imabelle is as bad as Goldy makes her out to be or just a patsy 9as she later claims).

All of Himes's later signature features are on display here: the slapstick violence that begins his novels, the dark view of humanity espoused by his two cops (one of whom gets acid splashed in his face in this work, an act which will have consequences throughout the series), the thoughtful detailing of the racist attitudes that have made Harlem such a crime den, and above all the magnificent portrait of Harlem itself. Himes is one of the most original of hardboiled detective fiction writers, and this novel seems to owe much less to Chandler and Hammett (or even to films noirs of the era) than that of any other period novelist of the hardboiled school I've encountered. (Indeed, the only person whose work he does seem to evoke sometimes is Will Eisner, the writer of "The Spirit" comics from the 40s: Imabelle's incredible presence of mind after being accosted by a would-be rapist and the cops after a big violent dust-up reminded me very much of Eisner's femmes fatales.) This novel may be messier and more confusing than some of Himes's later mysteries, but in some ways that's part of the fun: this is a difficult, demanding, and brilliant work about the messiness of crime in Harlem in the 1950s.

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