Drive, By James Sallis

Full throttle getaway to the underworld

Lesley McDowell
Sunday 25 September 2011 00:00

You don't have to be a crime fiction fan to appreciate the subversion of the American dream that takes place in this hark back to the pulp fiction of 60 or so years ago.

James Sallis gives us the seemingly amoral Driver, who is what he does – a man who drives stunt cars in Hollywood for a day job, and getaway cars in his spare time. The novel opens with the aftermath of a shoot-out, the result of the gang Driver is with robbing someone too powerful for them. Driver continues to kill in order to stay alive and, as he does so, the novel asks just how much we are tied to our fates; whether we can ever escape our backgrounds.

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