Miller, Frank – A Dame to Kill For: A Tale From Sin City
The best limited series in the Sin City line, bar none. It’s a more complex work than most of the other books in the series, and that’s not to say that the other ones are simple, because they’re pretty far from it. If I had one complaint about this series, it’s that the protagonist almost dies in every series. Shot to pieces, no way that he could be alive, but hate always keeps him going. It’s not a bad trick, but it would be nice if Miller didn’t use it in every series. Anyway, this one has it all: Dwight (the only character featured three times), Miho (I’ve already mentioned that she’s my favorite character in the whole Sin City world), Manute, Marv… Listen, I’m sure there are a lot of people out there who haven’t read any of these series yet and don’t know where to start. I don’t know why you’d be reading just one review, but if you’re reading this one, this book is the one to get. Or Family Values, if you want to be a cheapskate about it.
What’s it about, you say? Well, Dwight apparently went through a lot of bad shit back in the day, so these days he’s living clean and not letting “the monster” inside out. A visit from a past lover (Ava) has him rethink this plan, and finding out that she’s in trouble only makes him more convinced. After all, she tells him that she still loves him, and he never got over her. It’s one giant book of twists and turns after that, so I’m not going to spoil anything for you. One thing I really like about all these series is that there isn’t just a simple formula that Miller follows. I mean, you could read the greats of noir (like Raymond Chandler, Jim Thompson, James Cain and Dashiell Hammett) and, for all their brilliance, some of them got a little lazy. There would, more often than not, be a easily identifiable part of the story where you could see a plot twist coming a mile away, and that just isn’t the case with this guy. Not that I’m elevating him to their level, at least not yet. The greats of noir got to where they are in history (or at least for the people who still read books) by being prolific geniuses whose work has stood up to the test of time. It’s yet to be determined if the same can be said for this stuff, but it’s sure great to be along for the ride trying to figure it out.