"Andrew Vachss makes other crime novels/shows look like Teletubbies." ~ Kevin Elliot introducing Andrew Vachss at Open Books
Ok, so for two weeks leading up to Andrew Vachss' arrival at Open Books back in November, Kevin Elliot the book store guru at Open Books, kept saying how much he enjoyed this author and was so happy to have him come back to Chicago to do a reading at Open Books again.
I had not ever read a book by him, nor had I met him, so I figured I would be a book store volunteer that night in order to check it out. Well, I'm really glad I did.
Andrew Vachss is a child advocate lawyer who writes. He didn't want to read anything from any of his novels. He didn't want to talk about his writing process or any of that other lofty crap that other writers like to talk about during public readings. He wanted to connect with the audience and have a discussion. Question and answers. I felt as if he was the most down to earth person I had met in a while, which was super refreshing. He was opinionated, passionate, and quite funny. All great things.
Once the "reading" was over, I understood why Kevin admires him so much because I did too. So, I picked up this book that night. Andrew signed it and I took it home. When I finally got around to reading it; the story line was gritty, raw, and in your face. It's not a pretty story by any means, but what's presented is needed in order to make a point, which I liked.
Also, check out the website protect.org as all proceeds from the purchase of Andrew Vachss' books go here. I'm looking forward to reading more from him in the near future.