Books, Reviews


Red Dragon (Hannibal Lecter, #1)Red Dragon by Thomas Harris

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve been on a bit of a Hannibal Lecter kick of late- the TV series sucked me in good, and I recently rewatched The Silence of The Lambs. One story I’d never really approached was Red Dragon, even though it’s been filmed twice. What I really wanted to know was: is Hannibal Lecter so powerful just because he’s performed well, or is it a combination of acting and material?

I reckon it’s the latter. Red Dragon (pre Clarice Starling, but starring the TV show’s Will Graham) only features Lecter briefly, but he’s certainly memorable. Possibly more compelling is the deranged but in some ways sympathetic Francis Dolarhyde, a deformed and broken man who is haunted by apocalyptic visions and a vicious alternate personality.

As a procedural, it’s very good- Harris’ attention to detail during the FBI investigation is excellent. It’s also made me appreciate the TV series more- the characters presented here are perfectly in line with the series (well, except Dr. Bloom, who’s had a gender switch). all up, Red Dragon is a well done procedural that certainly set the stage for where Lecter was going next.

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