Step by Step: A Pedestrian Memoir
Book: Step by Step: A Pedestrian Memoir , by Lawrence Block, ISBN10: 0061774715, ISBN13: 9780061774713, HarperCollins Publishers, June 2009, Paperback
Lawrence Block is one of the most widely recognized names in the mystery genre. He has been named a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America and is a four-time winner of the prestigious Edgar and Shamus Awards, as well as a recipient of prizes in France, Germany, and Japan. He received the Diamond Dagger from the British Crime Writers' Association—only the third American to be given this award. He is a prolific author, having written more than fifty books and numerous short stories, and is a devoted New Yorker and an enthusiastic global traveler.
Before Lawrence Block was the author of bestselling novels featuring unforgettable characters such as hit man Keller, private investigator Matthew Scudder, burglar Bernie Rhodenbarr, and time traveler Evan Tanner, he was a walker. As a child he walked home from school, as a college student he walked until he was able to buy his first car, and, as an adult, he ran marathons until he discovered the sport of racewalking.
Through the lens of his walking adventures—in 24-hour races, on a pilgrimage through Spain, and just about everywhere you can imagine—Block shares his heartwarming personal story about life's trials and tribulations, discomforts and successes, that truly lets readers walk a mile in the master of mystery's shoes.
Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Block has been writing for more than 50 years and walking slightly longer, according to this memoir notable for frequent flashes of the author's keen wit. In the introduction, he accurately and honestly advises the reader that the book is as "every bit as self-indulgent as it wanted to be." Block goes on to provide lengthy details of his various forms of ambulation, from long solo walks as a seventh grader to a walk across Spain to Santiago de Campostela. Mostly he recounts his experiences as a runner and a racewalker in races ranging from 5Ks to marathons and 24-hour races. Runners or walkers will enjoy Block's accounts of his trials and triumphs, including a strange hiatus of more than 22 years. (Block was in his 40s when he stopped racing and in his 60s when he resumed walking marathons.) Mystery fans, unless they're Block completists or running enthusiasts themselves, may want to take a pass.
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