The Jealous Kind

The Jealous Kind

A Novel

Large Print - 2016
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On its surface, life in Houston is as you would expect: drive-in restaurants, souped-up cars, jukeboxes, teenagers discovering their sexuality. But beneath the glitz and superficial normalcy, a class war has begun, and it is nothing like the conventional portrayal of the decade. Against this backdrop Aaron Holland Broussard discovers the poignancy of first love and a world of violence he did not know existed. When Aaron spots the beautiful and gifted Valerie Epstein fighting with her boyfriend, Grady Harrelson, at a Galveston drive-in, he inadvertently challenges the power of the Mob and one of the richest families in Texas. He also discovers he must find the courage his father had found as an American soldier in the Great War.
Published: Waterville, Maine :, Wheeler Publishing Large Print,, 2016.
Edition: Large print edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781410491640
1410491641
Branch Call Number: F BUR
Characteristics: 597 pages (large print) ;,23 cm.
large print, rda

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Quotes

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j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

There was a loneliness in their eyes that convinced me prisons came in all sizes and shapes.
===
"You actually went out with her?”
“More or less.”
“That’s like getting laid by Doris Day."
===
"...There’s only one way to deal with them, son. If you’ve got a bad tooth, you pull the bad tooth.”
===
I could hear him breathing and could smell the testosterone that seemed ironed into his clothes.
===
The moment was like an interlude in time when the potential for good or bad could go either way.
===
... the same hollow cheeks and dark eyes, an expression that was less like aggression than acceptance of death. It was a strange look for a guy who was probably not over nineteen.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

My experience with the jellyfish seemed to characterize my life. No matter how sun-spangled the day might seem, I always felt a sense of danger. It wasn’t imaginary, either. The guttural roar of Hollywood mufflers on a souped-up Ford coupe, a careless glance at the guys in ducktail haircuts and suede stomps and pegged pants called drapes, and in seconds you could be pounded into pulp. Ever watch a television portrayal of the fifties? What a laugh.
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Sometimes I would think about these gangsters and the confidence in their expression and the deadness in their eyes when they gazed at someone they didn’t like, and I’d wonder what it would be like if I could step inside their skin and possess their power.
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you? ‘Grady’s not a bad kid. He’s simply incapable of being a good one.’

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

"...is a prick from his hairline to the soles of his feet."
===
“As a rule, when members of our church’s clergy talk about sin, what are they referring to?”
“Sex.”
“That’s correct. They don’t mention much about war, nor about violence in general. But that’s the real enemy, that and greed. Don’t let anybody tell you different. A man who carries a knife like that one is a man who’s afraid.”
===
I was sure the cops in the patrol car were watching. But they were black and I was white, and I knew they would not bother me. That I was taking advantage of the unjust way colored police officers were treated made me ashamed, but not enough to cause me to turn back from my destination.
===
“Make the smart move or it hits the fan in the next twelve hours. You think I’m manic? You don’t know manic. You think you can handle shit, I’ll show you shit. You think you’re some kind of rodeo cowboy can steal our money and tell us to fxck off? You’ll learn what getting fxcked is all about.”

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

There was a loneliness in their eyes that convinced me prisons came in all sizes and shapes.
===
Then she walked away, like Helen of Troy turning her back on Attica.
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‘Grady’s not a bad kid. He’s simply incapable of being a good one.’
===
Sometimes I would think about these gangsters and the confidence in their expression and the deadness in their eyes when they gazed at someone they didn’t like, and I’d wonder what it would be like if I could step inside their skin and possess their power.
===
My experience with the jellyfish seemed to characterize my life. No matter how sun-spangled the day might seem, I always felt a sense of danger. It wasn’t imaginary, either. The guttural roar of Hollywood mufflers on a souped-up Ford coupe, a careless glance at the guys in ducktail haircuts and suede stomps and pegged pants called drapes, and in seconds you could be pounded into pulp.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

"You actually went out with her?”
“More or less.”
“That’s like getting laid by Doris Day."
===
The moment was like an interlude in time when the potential for good or bad could go either way.
===
The teacher was Mr. Krauser, living proof we’d descended from apes.
===
... the same hollow cheeks and dark eyes, an expression that was less like aggression than acceptance of death. It was a strange look for a guy who was probably not over nineteen.
===
I could hear him breathing and could smell the testosterone that seemed ironed into his clothes.
===
"... There’s only one way to deal with them, son. If you’ve got a bad tooth, you pull the bad tooth.”

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

I think there is a clock in all of us that most choose not to see or heed. The clock has a date and an hour and minute and a second on it that are not subject to change.
===
The stars were already out, the drive-in where we met wrapped with yellow and red neon, the cars parked under the canopy glowing in the light like hard candy. When she pulled herself against me and held her head tight against my shoulder, her hands squeezing into my arm, I knew that neither of us would ever die, that life was a song, eternal in nature, and the smell and secrets of creation lay in the tumble of every wave that crested and receded into the Gulf. I also knew that the gifts of both heaven and earth would always remain where they had always been, at our fingertips and in the shimmer we see in the eyes of those we love.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

A conversation with Saber was like talking to the driver of a concrete mixer while he was backing his vehicle through a clock shop.
===
My father belonged to that generation of Southerners drawn to self-destruction and impoverishment as though neurosis and penury represented virtue.
===
I learned early on that people do not have to die to go to hell. As I sat next to her in the pew, I knew she had already departed from us and taken up residence in the privation and abandonment of her youth.
===
Nothing good comes out of war. It only breeds more hatred and suffering and killing.
===
I still believe in those precepts, but as we grow old and leave behind the pink clouds of our youth, we learn that truth often exists in degree rather than in absolutes.
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time. But in an imperfect world, I figured, there were instances when a lie served virtue better than the truth.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

“That’s a sad story.”
“Most true stories are.”
“You should be a writer yourself.”
“Why?”
“Because I think you’re a nice boy.”
“Somehow those statements don’t fit together,”
===
“I’m not afraid of them.” She jiggled her sprig of mint up and down in the ice. “Caution and fear aren’t the same thing.”
===
I would have dragged the Grand Canyon all the way to Texas to sit down with Valerie Epstein.
===
He’d lost his best friend in the trenches on November 11, 1918, and despised war and the national adoration of the military and the bellicose rhetoric of politicians who sent others to suffer and die in their stead. But he drank, and somehow those words subsumed and effaced all his virtues.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

"You know the kids I have the most trouble with? You pissants in Southwest Houston. You think you’re better than other people. I’ll take the nigras or the Mexicans over y’all any day. They might steal, but some of them don’t have much choice. Y’all vandalize property because you think it’s your right. Sometimes I fantasize about stuffing the bunch of you into a tree shredder.”
===
“You think you know these guys, Valerie, but you don’t. They’re mean to the bone.”
“I grew up here, a Jew in a neighborhood where people like me are called Christ killers. Don’t tell me what they’re like. Sit down.”
===
"...Know what makes them different from us?”
“They’re rich?”
"They don’t have feelings..."
===
But he had a brain like flypaper and never forgot anything.
===
“Look at what we read in school, Silas Marner and The House of the Seven Gables. I bet that’s what people in hell have to read for all eternity. Hitler and Tojo and guys like that.”

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

She reminded me of a crystal glass teetering on the edge of the drainboard, about to shatter in the sink.
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“He’s the founder of a right-wing organization that would enjoy seeing people like me put in a soap dispenser..."
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"...I don’t impose my way on Valerie. She’s like her mother. Not afraid and not receptive to control by others. That said, she’s still my little girl, and that means no boy or man will ever abuse or disrespect her. If that happens, I get involved. Are you reading me?”
===
“He’s like most of the boys around here. They aren’t afraid of the world they live in. They’re afraid of the world that’s waiting for them.”
===
“Would you boys like to continue drag racing, feeling up the girls at the drive-in, running your money through your peckers on beer and whores, and maybe even graduating from that brat factory you call a high school?”

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p
PCPL
Jun 27, 2017

Great as usual.

l
lukasevansherman
Mar 22, 2017

I think I've read everything by the prolific James Lee Burke and have yet to be disappointed. While he sticks to his strengths (sharply drawn characters, tangled up plots, pungent dialogue, a strong sense of evil and injustice), I never find his books cliched or dull. His latest (as of 3/17) is a little different in that the protagonist is Texas teenager Aaron Holland, who is related to the other Hollands that Burke has written about. It's partly the usual Burke crime sage, but also a coming of age/first love story that reminded me a bit of "The Last Picture Show." But with more death. Although he'll never get much respect from the literati, Burke is one of our great writers.

j
jimg2000
Jan 31, 2017

Been reading this latest book by Burke on and off for the last couple of weeks but never felt compelled to continue after a few pages. In other words far from a page turner for me. At times, thought the plot had finally thickened enough for some real drama. But nope, only more conventional frolicking and "Burke's" patois from the 17 year old Aaron Holland. So, read up on the reviews by others herein and professions critics, all said "great read." So keep reading but finally began to speed reading after Chapter 8. Very disappointed after having read and commented on seven Burke' s books in the last five years and rated them all between 3.5 to 4.5 stars. Nonetheless, still love those jabbers. 1.5 star for the story but 4.5 star for the patois. Found only a single quote in goodreads this morning but there should be plenty more, see "Quotes."

d
dubonnet
Jan 13, 2017

Burke at his terrific best!
A coming of age story in the early 1950's, told from the viewpoint of a man in his later years! I couldn't put it down. No one but Burke has such great insight into human characters and the descriptions to bring them to life. One of my all time favourite authors and books!

j
jonathan4300
Nov 29, 2016

Enjoyed the experience, life in working class world of a young man finding his way. Like reading a good story, this is for you. James Lee Burke does it again, could not stop reading and when the story finished I felt there has to be more..!!

j
jazpur
Nov 22, 2016

James Lee Burke never disappoints. I remember when we used to hear and see snippets of teenage life in America of this era.This one more than scrapes the surface. He always stands for doing the right thing in difficult, well nigh impossible circumstances.Much enjoyed. I hope there will be a film version.

j
JackPurcell
Oct 31, 2016

James Lee Burke calls this his best work. I tend to agree.

j
jonnyquick
Sep 16, 2016

Amazingly vivid descriptions of setting and characters separate Burke from any other writer. In my opinion, he is the best in the business. Hopefully, he has a "Robicheaux" book on the horizon.

0
0007548100dmw
Sep 09, 2016

Another top quality Burke book.
They just keep getting better.

b
Bokan
Sep 08, 2016

Burke is baaaaack! Excellent novel about love and depravity in the early '50s in Houston. His imagery is second to none. Highly recommended.

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