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Saturday, March 10, 2007

Hannibal NOT Rising

So this morning, I just finished reading Hannibal Rising by Thomas Harris. It was a disappointment, I must say. It is definitely the weakest of the books in the Hannibal Lecter series. It seems that Harris was writing on auto-pilot, probably just fulfilling the request of some movie producer. It's formulaic and predictable, not scary in the least. Serious fans of the franchise will want to read it, if only to fill in the blanks, but it is not a must-read for anyone else.

I guess my most serious criticism is that Harris succumbs to the post-modern trend of making the bad guys the real good guys. How can anyone really fault Hannibal for his atrocious deeds when you consider the circumstances? The reader roots for the villain, who is quite understandable after all. This is a far cry from the complicated yet undeniably evil Dr. Lecter of the previous stories.

Are real serial killers made or born? The evidence says both. I regret that Harris's latest installment makes Lecter purely a product of his experiences. He is not just a sociopath. He's a victim.

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2 comments:

Frank said...

Hannibal Rising is weaker than Hannibal? Wow.

Paul, in Bethel Park said...

Hello, Pastor!

I read the book and found it terribly disappointing.

I am relieved, in a way. Had it been a huge success, we may have seen "Charles Manson Rising" or "Jeffrey Dahmer Rising".

On a joyous note, Michael will be confirmed on Sunday, March 25th in a joint service at Our Savior. I am so proud of him. Please keep him in your prayers.

New Curriculum at Concordia Theological Seminary