After Dark, My SweetBy: Thompson, Jim (male)
Publisher: Popular Library (716)
Place of Publication: New York, NY
Catalog #: Kelley Box 381: PS3539 .H6733 A69 1955
Contributor: W. Prout
GeneralEra: 1950s Author as on Cover: Jim Thompson Geographic Locale: fictional small city/large town Date of Publication: 1955 | Original Date: 1955 Setting: suburban; city's edge; not quite the suburbs Motives: kidnapping
Drifting through a small city, Bill "Kid" Collins, an ex-prize fighter who recently walked away from a psychiatric institution, enters a bar and spins a story in an attempt to hitch a ride. Fay Anderson, a patron at the bar, recognizes Collins as an out-of-work drifter and invites him back to her house where she and Uncle Bud try to set Collins up in a kidnapping caper. Collins recognizes the set-up and he takes steps to double cross the double crossers.
Charles Vanderventer III male, 7 year old child, small for his age, weak, pale, diabetic
William Collins "Kid," adult male, blonde, slim, very attractive, ex-boxer, now an out-of-work drifter; anti-hero character, not a good guy yet not one of the really bad guys
Fay Anderson adult female, dark hair, very attractive, widow, no occupation
Uncle Bud aka Garret Stroker, adult male, prematurely grey, winning smile, everybody's friend, con man
Doc Goldman adult male, slight suggestion of homosexual tendency, older, pleasant, physician
Bert adult male, middle-aged, big, burly, bartender
Level of Violence
Collins uses physical violence once against Bert (grabs him and drags him over the bar), and on Uncle Bud (knocks him out when Bud pulls a gun on him).
the sexual encounter between Collins and Anderson is expected from the moment they meet; implied homosexual interest by Doc Goldman toward Collins.
traditional 1950s gender roles for male and female characters.
not a factor
there is a great deal of drinking. Fay is very close to being an alcoholic and other characters drink frequently. Almost everyone smokes.
there are no law enforcement characters in this novel.
Kidnapping/ Alcoholism/ Guilt/ Paranoia
paranoia (Collins), guilt, depression and alcohol abuse (Anderson),
After Dark, My Sweet, 1990, Avenue