Drive by James Sallis

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Much later, as he sat with his back against an inside wall of a Motel 6 just north of Phoenix, watching the pool of blood lap toward him, Driver would wonder whether he had made a terrible mistake. Later still, of course, there’d be no doubt. But for now Driver is, as they say, in the moment. And the moment includes this blood lapping toward him, the pressure of dawn’s late light at windows and door, traffic sounds from the interstate nearby, the sound of someone weeping in the next room....”

Marilyn Stasio of the New York Times posited that “James Sallis ha[d] written a perfect piece of noir fiction.” Entertainment Weekly commented, “short and not so sweet, Drive is one lean, mean, masterful machine.” It was a great success.

May 2011, “The best-director winner, Denmark’s Nicolas Winding Refn, won for the neo-noir “Drive,” set in Los Angeles and starring Ryan Gosling as an emotionless wheelman who lives to drive — movie stunts by day, robberies by night — and makes a rare stab at human connection with fetching neighbor Carey Mulligan.” Y

Thus begins Drive by one of the nation’s most respected and honored authors. Set mostly in Arizona and L.A., the story is, according to Sallis, “about a guy who does stunt driving for movies by day and drives for criminals at night. In classic noir fashion, he is double-crossed and, though never before has he participated in the violence (I drive. That’s all.), he goes after the ones who double-crossed and tried to kill him.”

About James Sallis

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JAMES SALLIS is the author of the popular Lew Griffin novels and over a dozen other books, including the biography “Chester Himes, “a “New York Times “Notable Book. He has been short-listed for the Anthony, Nebula, Edgar, Shamus, and Gold Dagger awards. He lives in Phoenix, Arizona. “An “Entertainment Weekly “Top 10 Book of 2005A “Washington Post “Best Book of 2005?
Published September 23, 2011 by Poisoned Pen Press. 169 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Business & Economics, Crime. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Drive

Publishers Weekly

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Author of the popular six-novel series set in New Orleans featuring detective Lew Griffin (The Long-Legged Fly , etc.) and such stand-alone crime novels as Cypress Grove , Sallis won't disappoint fans who enjoy his usual quirky literary stylings.

Aug 01 2005 | Read Full Review of Drive

BC Books

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Drive is a short, punchy read that’s not going to change your life or present some existential view of morality that's going to cause you to question your place in the universe, but it will make time pass almighty quickly.

Nov 15 2006 | Read Full Review of Drive


I find the interpretation of the novel interesting and still appreciate James Sallis’ foundation because without the novel, there would have been no film.

Jun 26 2012 | Read Full Review of Drive

AV Club

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“I’m a driver,” says Ryan Gosling in Drive, and he doesn’t need to say another word.

Sep 15 2011 | Read Full Review of Drive

Entertainment Weekly

James Sallis' riveting novella reads the way a Tarantino or Soderbergh neo-noir plays, artfully weaving through Driver's haunted memory and fueled by confident storytelling and keen observations about moviemaking, low-life living, and, yes, driving.

Sep 16 2005 | Read Full Review of Drive

Los Angeles Times

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Drive A Novel James Sallis Poisoned Pen Press: 160 pp., 19.95

Feb 03 2006 | Read Full Review of Drive

Bookmarks Magazine

Marilyn Stasio Boston Globe 4 of 5 Stars "In his latest crime novel, James Sallis has combined the plot of a pulp novel from the ‘40s with the atmosphere of a French film noir into one stark and stunning tale.

Aug 28 2007 | Read Full Review of Drive

Spinetingler Magazine

Every moment in the story is carefully chosen by Sallis to reveal those parts of the story and of Drivers life that resonate with intensity and insight.

Sep 22 2010 | Read Full Review of Drive

Spinetingler Magazine

Robert Einarson reviews "DRIVE" by James Sallis ...

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Alternative Magazine Online

Set in L.A, it tells the story of a man known only as ‘Driver’, who is a Hollywood stunt driver for movies by day and a getaway driver for criminals by night.

Oct 21 2011 | Read Full Review of Drive


(Though dozens of drivers are credited, Gosling did a number of his own stunts.) Still, it's surprising that a film called "Drive" doesn't feature more driving.

May 19 2011 | Read Full Review of Drive

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