Matchstick MenI had no expectation that this was going to be a great work of literature. I didn’t think it was going to change my life, make me believe in a higher power or change the way I live. I knew it was going to be a little bit of light reading for the summer–a small distraction between slices of dense post-modern prose. In this way I wasn’t disappointed. What was ultimately disappointing was the empty feeling I came away with after turning the last page, I’ve never read a grifter/caper book before. I tend to like this genre of film, but reading about it is a completely different thing. You aren’t distracted by the actors and the scenery. You have to concentrate solely on the plot, making it that much easier to see through all the twists and turns. By page five I pretty much knew exactly what was going on. I knew who was screwing who, who was going to end up getting it in the end, etc. The author tried the Sopranos approach of giving his criminal main characters some substance by maligning them with mental issues and general “regular person” problems. Hmmm, it’s not new anymore. Despite its shortcomings, the book was entertaining for the most part and fulfilled that bubblegum, summer reading craving. It’ll be interesting to see what they do with the movie–the trailer actually looks pretty good.