Sunday, October 04, 2009

Exception to most of the rules

After a long break, both from blogging and the series, I think it is time we get back to the Detectives series. This time, it’s a detective who proves to be the exception to a great many rules.

Aloysius Pendergast

His Name: Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast

His Watson: (Mostly) Lt. Vincent D’Agosta

His Moriarty: (Mostly) Diogenes Pendergast

relic Unlike most of the book characters in the series, Special Agent Pendargast, FBI, is officially paid to solve crimes. Of course, officially he is supposed to work out of New Orleans office, but that doesn’t stop him running across the country solving the crimes he finds interesting.

Unlike the detectives living from case to case, Pendergast’s inheritance includes, apart from his prodigious mental capacity, a not inconsiderable wealth. Born and bred a Southern Gentleman, Aloysius’ mannerisms belong more to the era of Holmes and Poirot than the current crop of roguish PIs. Of course, he is also aware of his “small character flaws”, like being impatient with bureaucracy and dislike of officious fools, which he declares are hard to get rid of.

Almost albino pale skin, with his characteristic Italian black suits give him an aura of impenetrable mystery, yet for a lone man, he is extremely loyal to his few friends. He has put his own life in danger for them, and also expects (and gets) similar loyalty from them.

cemetary dance coverMany times, his brother Diogenes as related to him is compared to Moriarty. Personally, despite their relative ages, I think he is more like if “His Majesty’s accountant” Mycroft Holmes had taken on a career of crime. But given Pendergast’s other family members (his great aunt is incarcerated in a psychological institute after she poisoned her family), Aloysius as a federal agent is more of an exception than the rule in his family of geniuses.

Most of Aloysius Pendergast’s cases almost belong in supernatural world. From mythical South American tribal creatures, to old Egyptian mummies, he investigates bizarre cases involving zombies, ritualistic murders and immortal foes. Surprisingly, most of the cases take him to New York, and make you think twice before visiting the city, or Natural History Museum there. 


- The Great Eagle Has Spoken

P.S. The rest in “Detectives” series