In the Electric Mist
The original title continued to say With Confederate Dead. I’ve been a fan of James Lee Burke’s Dave Robicheaux novels since the very first one. I grew up in the area he writes about, Cajun country, but just across the state line in Texas. He sure handles the settings well. This was not actually my favorite of the books, but it’s good enough. One thing I can’t figure out, though. Dave has a podnah (as he spells it) named Cletus Purcell. They’ve been together since they walked a beat together in the Big Easy. Eventually Dave moved to the New Iberia sheriff’s department and Clete, who is best described as a human train wreck, is more or less a private dick. To give you an idea of Clete, he once drove a D-9 Caterpillar through the house of a mobster just to cover up the theft of a floppy disc from the man’s computer. Totaled the house. For some reason, the screenwriter eliminated Clete from this movie. Which is a shame. I usually cast movie stars when I’m reading a book and I always saw John Goodman as Clete. The funny thing is, Goodman is in this picture, only he’s playing a gangster and low-life called Julie “Baby Feet” Balboni. Tommy Lee Jones plays Dave, and does it so well that I will henceforth put him in that role when I read another Burke novel.