Share for friends:

Dixie City Jam (1995)

Dixie City Jam (1995)

Book Info

4.06 of 5 Votes: 2
Your rating
0786889004 (ISBN13: 9780786889006)
hachette books

About book Dixie City Jam (1995)

If this book was a truck, it would be a heavy duty Ford able to pull a submarine out of the water. As number seven in the Dave Robicheaux series, this book, I believe, was the best one yet and that’s saying a lot since I’ve given them all four or five stars. (I don’t give out five stars easily.)Happy that I started with book number one because it lays out the development of Robicheaux otherwise I might think the guy is just simply crazy. He is certainly prone to violence but doles it out carefully. When presented with violence he doesn’t sidestep it except when it’s to his benefit, however his ex- New Orleans PD partner Cletus Purcel barrels right into it like a bull in a China shop.If reading about violence and unseemly characters bothers you, pass this book up. The word unseemly isn’t strong enough because the main villain is simply evil and Burke’s description of him in some passages was downright scary. I’m not the sensitive sort either. The villain (and there are a few) is a neo-Nazi, known worldwide however has avoided capture. Some passages just made me uneasy and I know it’s a book. Burke’s writing style is lyrical, singsong in some passages. I love his command of the English language. In my opinion it is well earned since his degree is in English and he was a college professor of English and creative writing. I’m drawn towards authors with similar backgrounds and Robert B. Parker comes to mind. Such writers know how to structure sentences and bring life to the English language for the reader. I was struck by the sensuously written love scenes. Burke’s writing evokes the tenderness or sadness of Dave’s feeling at the time. They were just lovely passages and some I re-read because they were so beautifully written. While some readers may find his description of the scenery of southern Louisiana tiresome, I never tire of reading the color of the sun coming up, bouncing off the curtains, or the sky’s brightness and when I said lyrical, I’m speaking mostly of those passages. After Burke's description after a rain you can almost feel the dampness on your arms. Burke uses figures of speech in clever ways to draw the reader into the character or scene so the reader feels they’re a ‘fly on the wall’ eavesdropping. He brings the events and characters to life for the reader.Clete plays an important role in the plot which had a number of subplots related both closely and peripherally to the main plot, that being the sinking and location of a Nazi submarine off the coast of Louisiana. The characters were numerous but all drawn so clearly by Burke that you did not need to make a special effort to remember them. Although published in 1994, Burke used the book to make social commentary with references to a national right wing radio personality; the homeless, poverty and a number of other issues in the national dialog we read about daily. Dixie City Jam was one of those books I had a very hard time putting down.Wanting to savor the series, I chose to read a Dave Robicheaux book every two months or so. I want them to last. I like that feeling that I’m ‘going home’ when I begin a new one and want that feeling to be drawn out as long as possible. Savoring my Robicheaux binge, I know.

I've always been a huge fan of James Lee Burke. I just love the feeling I get of being swept away down south into the world of Louisiana and New Orleans and the vivid picture he paints of the places and people in his books. Burke's writing is always so descriptive, down to the leaves on a tree and this always adds such a great extra element to his stories and enhances your whole reading experience.I always get mixed feelings when reading one of Burke's books, and this one was no exception. I gravitate from being disgusted at certain events, to being fascinated by others and that is another reason I love this author. The way he makes you feel as if you can visualise and even smell the evilness of the main charater, Will Buchalter really gets you interested in the story and makes you want nothing more that to see this guy get put in his place. Dave Robicheaux is again playing the typical cop trying to do things the correct way but who doesn't mind going against the grain whenever it will work out in the good guys favour, or if it means protecting his family.I've always been a huge fan of Clete Purcell too. I think this character is hilarious and I just love his complete disregard for any laws. Sometimes he can go overboard but that's half the fun of waiting to see what he will do next.I definitely recommend this book to any Burke fan. Once I was halfway through I just couldn't put it down!

Do You like book Dixie City Jam (1995)?

James Lee Burke thinks that humanity is inherently bad, and that Judas Iscariot is us. I disagree with him, but I loved this book. It is one wild, hyper-literate, frenzied yet introspective, violent romp. Where else you gonna get that, mon?Yes, Clete Purcel, absent from Robicheaux #6, is back, and in fine form. Purcel refers to himself and our protagonist as "The Bobbsey Twins" (an archaic reference for those of you younger than 45), and it seems to me that it fits. When Purcel misbehaves, Robicheaux pulls him back from the edge (sometimes). Purcel has done the same for him on occasion...though less often. And once in awhile, they both get into use-your-best judgment moments that nevertheless fall short, fortunately, of mutually-agreed-upon vigilantism.Nearly our entire cast of characters gets into trouble in one way or another, either as victim, criminal, or as one who's been mistaken for the other. Alafair walks away damaged only by what she has seen and heard (not that this is minimal, but in one of Burke's stories, it's about as good as it gets). Everyone else is up for grabs.A continuing thread that may bother some with its perpetual presence, but that suits me down to the ground, is the racist and unjust way in which cops and prisons affect all of us, particularly people of color and poor people (with obvious overlap in some cases). Lucinda Bergeron and her son are great new additions. In every story, someone always seems to provide a counterpoint to correct Dave's mistaken viewpoints or limited range of experiences. Batist, Bergeron and her son do that at various times.Stir in Hippo's double-edged but real friendship and some neo-Nazis, and you can be sure you won't be bored for even one minute.I bought a used copy because I could, but this is worth the price of a new copy if push comes to shove.Just be aware that once you hit the last 20% of the book, finding a stopping place so you can go to sleep is entirely out of the question. You'll need some wind-down time once it's finished, too!
—Donna Davis

It's too bad, really. I find Burke's writing engaging and his storytelling complex and satisfying. The style of writing in the Robicheaux books seems to fit the character perfectly - the matter-of-factness, the description, the somewhat taciturn presentation. I like Dave's strong, but damaged personality. I like other characters and Burke brings most of them to life. I can almost see and smell and taste New Orleans in these books, even though I have never been there. But the vulgarity is just too much. I understand that he is portraying a certain culture and life-style. However, I believe that a great writer can portray the same feeling, the grittiness, without stooping to the excessive profanity - so MANY f-bombs - the excessive vulgar and course euphemisms and the sexual content. Those are cheap and easy crutches.Batist is a main character in the beginning, has a couple of little pop-ups, but mostly disappears. The incident sets up the rest of the story, I guess, but having him so prominent and then nonexistent was jarring. I expected Batist to appear throughout the story because of that beginning and was very conscious of his absence.The villains are pretty creepy and compelling. Having your home and family violated is its own kind of terrifying. But after all the set up it was wrapped up a little too easily.I read book 6 in 2007. Maybe the content is why I put them aside for so long. I won't be continuing because of the graphic content and profanity. These are not the images and language that I want floating around in my head.Burke is a very good writer. I wish he would stretch just a little more to be great and not use the garbage he relies on to set the scene and tone.

James Lee Burke is an especially fluid and descriptive writer. Dixie City Jam is loaded with wonderful phrasing and exquisite descriptions. Being a mystery thriller, it is also full of action and lively characters that intrigues the reader. Burke doesn't seem to know how to write a one-dimensional character. Even the most minor ones are many layered and full of surprises. On top of this, add a close and personal knowledge of the Louisiana delta and New Orleans. The only other writer I can think of that brings this type of cultural intimacy to the literary thriller is Tony Hillerman in his Navajo mysteries.Dixie City Jam is the seventh book in the series that feature police officer David Robicheaux. The nominal plot features a Nazi submarine sunk off of the Louisiana coast and a group of seedy people who want Robicheaux's help in recovering it. But this is a bit of a "MacGuffin", as Hitchcock would say. The true interest is in the complex relationship of persons as far afield as crooked detectives to Irish gangsters to psychotic Nazis. The novel is a melting pot of ethnic angst and corrupt dreams. I was thoroughly entranced with this novel and will no doubt devour the entire series. Four and a half stars.

download or read online

Read Online

Write Review

(Review will shown on site after approval)

Other books by author James Lee Burke

Other books in series Dave Robicheaux

Other books in category Science Fiction