Title: ROBBERS - Scarce Fine Copy of The First ...
Publisher: New York City, NY: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2000
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Signed: Signed by Author
Edition: 1st Edition.
1st Printing. Signed. 372 pages. Published in 2000. The author's breakthrough debut novel. One of the most important literary debuts of our time. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now scarce. Presents Christopher Cook's "Robbers". A triumphant achievement. "The harsh, foreboding essence of rural Texas dominates Cook's bloody, bittersweet novel, charting the adventures of two criminal drifters and their pursuer. From the disturbing opening scene in which Eddie and Ray Bob kill a convenience store clerk, the running buddies lash their way across Texas, shooting gas station attendants and shopkeepers, and stealing small amounts of money and food. Young and broke, Eddie is an aspiring blues guitarist, baffled by the violence of Ray Bob, a natural predator for whom killing is not just a thrill but a calling. The boys' aimless adventure eventually includes Della, a woman who patterns her life on women's magazines and desperately aspires to middle-class respectability. While hiding out in a rundown beach house near Galveston, Della and Eddie fall for each other, much to the disgust of Ray Bob. Eddie and Ray Bob split up, Eddie to pursue his romance and career and Ray Bob to continue his plunder. Just as a crafty Texas Ranger, Rule Hooks, picks up their scent. Hooks, a tracker by training and instinct, relies on modern police methods as well as his gut instincts to sniff out his prey. Cook's plot tumbles from scene to scene with jarring brilliance, the pathos of his characters lending his otherwise brutal world a certain beauty. His imagery is striking, almost lyrical. This gritty crime drama is not for the faint of heart, but Cook's prose sets it a notch above many like novels" (Publishers Weekly). The plot is familiar terrain (Cormac McCarthy appropriated it virtually unchanged for "No Country For Old Men"). It's the subtleties and nuances, the sheer intricacy that makes Cook's novel so satisfying. An absolute "must-have" title for Christopher Cook collectors. This copy is very prominently and beautifully signed in black pen on the title page by Christopher Cook. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. This title is now collectible. This is one of few such signed copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a pristine beauty. A scarce signed copy thus. One of the finest American mystery writer of our time. A fine copy. ISBN 0786707763. Bookseller Inventory # 10974
Synopsis: This debut novel is written in a style evocative of James Lee Burke and Elmore Leonard at their toughest and funniest. From page one and nonstop, Christopher Cook, a brilliant new talent in crime fiction, takes two drifters on a wild and bloody ride across the state of Texas. Written with an eye and heart for the rural south so true that readers will smell the magnolia and taste the dust, this first novel has such authenticity, assuredness, and strength that it will be immediately apparent why James Ellroy has already described it as "my kind of book." From its terse opening lines Robbers promises to be any crime and mystery fan's kind of book: "Eddie didn't intend to shoot the guy. Didn't intend to rob him, either. What happened was - " Thus begins the path of mayhem laid by the two drifters Eddie and Ray Bob, one a sociopath and the other a talented blues guitarist, as well as the mission of the Texas Ranger who pursues them. As the two losers wind their way across Texas, robbing and killing with no long-range plans, and no immediate ones either, they hook up with a young woman named Della. Eddie falls in love with her and decides to clean up his act for her - much to the disgust of Ray Bob, who preferred the trigger-happy life with his buddy before the intrusion of Della with her middle-class desire for respectability.
Review: Start with a cliché: Texas is big. Big enough for someone to start running and keep running, big enough to harbor dreams, big enough to crush them. Then transmute the cliché into narrative gold, spun from violence, bittersweet humor, beauty, and terror. The alchemist is Christopher Cook, whose first novel is a noir powerhouse: uncompromising and authentic, with darkly funny characters and prose that veers magically between grandeur and grit. Think James Lee Burke and Elmore Leonard, but think William Faulkner and Cormac McCarthy too.
The bleak joyride of Robbers follows Eddie and Ray Bob, drifters bound together against a common enemy they're powerless to define (boredom, conventionality, poverty?), on a killing spree across the Lone Star state. A chance shooting in a convenience store sets the two runnin' buddies on a road noteworthy for its anonymity as well as its violence:
The twin tunnels of light the Caddy bored forward into darkness never faltered but seemed to gain no ground different from any other. The FM still didn't work, and they changed from one AM station to another as they ran out from beneath the reach of each into broken waves of static. That's how they knew they were moving. Otherwise they might not have known in that broad charcoal sweep beneath wheeling constellations.One shooting leads inexorably to another, and another... though nothing else is sure in this breathtaking novel, which counters anticipation with surprise at every turn. The novel's brutality is matter-of-fact, but never casual. When Della, a single mother with an unusually pressing problem, joins Eddie and Ray Bob on the run, the picture gets complicated for all concerned. And the drift becomes a pursuit rich with near-mythic overtones, as Texas Ranger Rule Hooks tracks the trio from the Gulf Coast to the pine forests of East Texas. Hooks is a pragmatic loner with an uncanny ability to sense the movements of his prey: "He stood still. He was having a feeling. He had them now and then and sometimes he listened and sometimes he didn't. It all depended. Just now he didn't know. Wasn't sure."
It may be bad luck to speak of the expectations for Cook's next novel, but when one's debut is as astonishing as this, high expectations are inevitable, as is the impatience with which readers, bowled over by Robbers' speed and skill, will await the next serendipitous event. --Kelly Flynn
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Store Description: Modern Rare is exclusively an online bookstore. Our physical address is 124 N. California Ave, Chicago, Illinois 60612, U.S.A. The main contact person is Salvador L. Cortes. He can be reached at 312-376-5000 during regular business hours, Monday to Friday, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Chicago/Midwestern Standard Time. Email is usually the best way to reach us: email@example.com We will respond to your email query within 24 hours. We are exclusively an online bookstore because we believe this is the best way to satisfy our customers' expectations. Unlike an open bookstore, where books are routinely handled and may deteriorate, we guarantee the condition of our books as described. We specialize in modern firsts, photography, the arts, and erotica. You will also find a fine selection of signed copies, Limited Editions, and memorabilia because our ultimate goal is to deepen the pleasure of collecting books. We carry titles that we ourselves like and believe in -- books that we think will excite, enchant, and endure. Please note: Payment needs to be made directly through ABEBooks. If you wish to make any other payment arrangement, please get in touch with us before placing your order. Thank you and happy collecting!