Tuesday, January 08, 2019

Morse of Course

Recently, I wrote about spending New Years Eve with an old friend: that friend being Morse.

And yes, since then, we have been re-watching the series. The plots are complex enough and our memories short enough that we get a lot out of the episodes to the point where we will likely watch them again . . . someday.

Morse is the one detective over whom I actually get sentimental. I really like the guy and his partner, Lewis. Poor Morse is unlucky in love and pretty much of a loner outside of work: a flawed but human and likable person.

But I had never read the Morse books by Colin Dexter. Sure, I had thought about it more than once, but so many things just pass through my mind and just keep on travelling at light speed into the emptiness of space.

This time, however, I found myself checking out the series on Amazon/Kindle. But how much would I like the books as opposed to the tv series? I wondered whether they would be worth the investment.

But wait a minute there, AC. There is a library in town, and perhaps . . .

And they did! So in the middle of the night, I checked the website, put one on hold, and picked it up the next day.

The Remorseful Day* was the final installment of the series, proving that it's true — the last shall be first (as far as reading order goes). Indeed, I found myself becoming sentimental all over again. But they key point is that I liked it.

The book version and the tv version (of the same episode) were close enough that I could picture Morse and Lewis very well. I didn't find a big disconnect between the two presentations. While I can see some differences in the characters (for example: Morse in the novels does not seem quite as crusty as Morse on the telly), they are substantially similar, which I found myself appreciating.

I enjoyed the book well enough that the very next day saw me returning it (read, of course) and picking up another Morse: this one containing the first three novels in one volume.

And so, I sat down yesterday (yesterday as I write this), and read all of the very first novel of the series, The Dead of Jericho. Since I consumed it in one day, I suppose that it is superfluous to write that I quite liked it.

Dexter is both an accomplished writer as well as a clever writer. I can appreciate his vocabulary and turns of phrase very much but also revel in the cleverness of the plot. Having recently also watched The Dead of Jericho, I could visualize the characters and scenes quite well. Although, they changed the plot somewhat for tv, the broad strokes remained very similar.

I will continue to read Morse and will most likely purchase whatever novels are not in our little, local library.
*That must be a very intended play on words: The ReMORSEful Day, which is something that I can also appreciate. But you knew that.


Tabor said...

You may also like Endeavor which is Morse learning to work his way through the police politics as a younger more naive man. It is lovely.

Marty Damon said...

Another series, Elizabeth Geotge's (quick claim to fame - I met her at a writing conference - nice lady) Inspector Lynley, translated well to tv,too, although the physical appearance of the characters was really different.

Have you found the Endeavor tv series? It's about Morse at the beginning of his career.

Hena Tayeb said...

Have never heard of any of these series' or books.
Will check them out.


Marie Smith said...

I love mysteries and would only read them except for book club!

William Kendall said...

I imagine the author's work is fairly readily available in any library system.

Mage said...

I need to try those,. Perhaps "Endeavor" too. Thanks.

Vicki Lane said...

We enjoyed Morse, Endeavor, and the Lewis and Hathaway series. Perhaps it's time for me to read the books.

Jenn Jilks said...

We have the entire series!

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