Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Happy Birthday Charles Willeford

Since I had been thinking about Charles Willeford earlier in the day, I looked him up on Wikipedia tonight, and it turns out today would have been his 88th birthday. The Wikipedia article is here. There are also some excerpts from his work here. An exceprt from the previously mentioned Black Mass of Brother Springer is here.
For further reading on Willeford, check out the No Exit Press website for an essay on Black Mass and other works, by William Robert Bittner.
Bittner sees Black Mass, as a comedy, which is a fair interpretation, but he also calls it Willeford's "gentlest of novels," which I do not think it is. On the contrary, it is one of his most cynical, which is saying something. There is comedy, but it is pitch black and ugly, nothing gentle about it.

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