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The Neon Jungle
The Neon Jungle: A Novel | John D. MacDonald
2 posts | 3 read | 2 to read
No writer captured the urban blight that befell postwar America in all its grime and commotion as well as noir legend John D. MacDonald. The Neon Jungle depicts a world in which the bright lights belie the turbulent lives of a lost generation. Introduction by Dean Koontz The smell of warm gin hovers over a whole section of town. The threat of violence hangs in the air. And the neighborhood kids know all about drugs, knives, and back-alley beatings long before theyre pushed into high school by weary truant officers. This is simply reality for the family that runs Varaki Quality Market. Its patriarch, Gus Varaki, is doing all he can to keep his business afloat after his beloved middle child, Henry, is killed in action. But his oldest son is at a crossroads, his teenage daughter has been seduced by a rough crowd, and one of his employees is running a racket of his own. Only Henrys despondent widow, Bonny, sees the awful truthand the deadly plot hanging over all of their heads. Praise for John D. MacDonald John D. MacDonald was the great entertainer of our age, and a mesmerizing storyteller.Stephen King My favorite novelist of all time . . . No price could be placed on the enormous pleasure that his books have given me.Dean Koontz John D. MacDonald is a shining example for all of us in the field. Talk about the best.Mary Higgins Clark
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Michael_Gee
The Neon Jungle: A Novel | John D. MacDonald
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A look through a narrow, gritty window at a white 1950s city neighborhood decayed by addiction. Each chapter dips into the mind of a different character, all struggling basically with the choice to focus on self or community. This is woven through a propulsive story that simmers with the threat of violence & finally explodes in nightmarish murder.

Bookwomble The title being a mashup of Burnett's "The Asphalt Jungle" and Algren's "The Neon Wilderness", I had to triple-check what I was reading before I recognised it was neither ? 9mo
Bookwomble Love the cover 😍 9mo
Michael_Gee @Bookwomble How funny! I haven‘t read either of those, but this was published after them so I bet he/the publishers were banking on that confusion/association. 9mo
Bookwomble @Michael_Gee No doubt. The cover is suggestive of both the others. Burnett's is a nice heist caper, which was made into a film giving Marilyn Munroe her biggest part up to that time. Algren's is his usual dour self, telling stories of urban alienation, which I've always assumed gave The Verve the title for their song on the Urban Hymns album. Connections! ⛓🙂 9mo
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Michael_Gee
The Neon Jungle: A Novel | John D. MacDonald
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I‘m just one big smell of stale bedroom and warm gin.

LeahBergen This pic! 🤣 9mo
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