Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Done: "Pronto" by Elmore Leonard

Done: Pronto by Elmore Leonard, 1993, 0385308469.

Dang.  This novel is twenty years old.  I went through the stacks looking for a Leonard book and not many were in general fiction.  I don't recall if I looked in the mystery section.  I was going to pass on this one but figured I liked the original Raylan short story so much that I should try this out.  I did not like the recent novel, Raylan.  Almost all the stories in Raylan were already used by the TV show.  That or they were used during the television season after the novel released.

The problem I had while reading this is that the television show is done so well.  Timothy Olyphant is so good as TV Raylan that I have difficulty reconciling him with Print Raylan.  Anyway.

Raylan is looking after a Miami bookmaker who has been set-up by the FBI.  An unscrupulous FBI agent forced someone talk to the mob boss in charge of Bookmaker.  That Someone told Mob Boss he just paid off a $10,000 bet to Bookmaker.  Mob Boss never got his cut.  Mob Boss is mad about being scammed by the skim.  Mob Boss cannot lose face.  Mob Boss sends a hitter from the Everglades and Bookmaker guns down Everglades hitter in parking lot.

Bookmaker arrested for murder (the Everglades guy's gun went missing while Bookmaker hustled back inside). Bookmaker on bail.  Raylan sent to watch him.  Raylan likes Bookmaker but Bookmaker skipped out on Raylan five years ago at the Atlanta airport when Raylan was escorting him to a Chicago grand jury.  Bookmaker never got in trouble for skipping out but Raylan was hurt professionally by that skip out and his feeling were hurt.  Conversation ensues.

Bookmaker skips out on Raylan again.  Bookmaker goes to Italy.  Raylan makes a deal with the bail bondswoman for reimbursement if Raylan brings Bookmaker back from Italy.  Bookmaker hires expatriate American in Italy as bodyguard.  Things happen.  Conversation ensues.

Real Italian Mobster works for Miami Mob Boss follows Bookmaker to Italy.  Real Italian Mobster is a bad dude.  Real Italian Mobster and Raylan are in race to find Bookmaker.  Raylan finds Bookmaker first.  Raylan gets hot for Bookmaker's much, much younger lady companion.  Conversation ensues.

Raylan kills an Italian goon.  Expatriate is caught by Real Italian Mobsters pals who are also Real Italian Mobsters.  Bookmaker skips back to Miami. Expatriate murdered right in front of Raylan.  Raylan is not happy.  Raylan returns to Miami.  Real Italian Mobster returns to Miami.  Raylan tells Italian Mobster to leave the County within 24 hours.  Raylan kills Italian Mobster.  Raylan is lovey-dovery with Much Much Younger Companion.  [Raylan then gets in trouble for killing Italian Mobster, is sent to Kentucky, and becomes the TV Raylan we know and love.]  Conversation ensues.

1. Miami.
2.  Detroit.
3.  Personality quirks.
4.  Conversations that Leonard rarely describes.  No adjectives for Leonard.  You figure out the dialogue on your own.
5.  I wrote some brief comments on an index card I was using as a bookmark.  That index card is missing.  I was out Webelo Scout camp in Janesville when I finished this on Monday.  There was a big storm after midnight on Tuesday morning.  Lots of lightning and very loud thunder.  That stuff is scary when you're inside a tent.
6.  Some lady just said "Cool beans" to me.
7.  Bail bBndswoman may be the one Raylan who was murdered last season on the show.
8.  Raylan warns a guy to not take another step or Raylan will shoot the guy.  Guy steps.  Raylan shoots.  Exactly like Season One or Two.

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