Monthly Archives: July 2011

Devil Red by Joe R. Lansdale – review

July 29, 2011
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Devil Red by Joe R. Lansdale – review

The Hap & Leonard series from Joe R. Lansdale consistently hit homes book after book for numerous reasons.  There’s Lansdale no-bullshit prose, the evocative East Texas setting,  the abundance of dirty jokes and funny dialogue, the kick-ass action sequences, and storytelling that’s loose when you want it to be but tight when it counts....

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Adventures of Cash Laramie and Gideon Miles by Edward Grainger – review

July 28, 2011
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Adventures of Cash Laramie and Gideon Miles by Edward Grainger – review

Legendary Western writer Luke Short once gave an up-and-coming Brian Garfield the following advice: “Take out all the Western trappings. Your story should depend on characters and behavior. If it still works after you get rid of the clichés, it’s a story.” Judging from this, I’d wager that Luke Short would have greatly enjoyed...

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Every Shallow Cut by Tom Piccirilli – review

July 26, 2011
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Every Shallow Cut by Tom Piccirilli – review

An Open Letter to Tom Piccirilli: Dear Tom- I just finished Every Shallow Cut a couple days ago and have got to say: Goddammit, man. After reading that, I think I’m hanging up my spurs. Or Moleskine, as it were. I can’t beat it, or really even come close. Please keep in mind that...

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Is 2011 the year of the e-publisher?

July 26, 2011
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A recent Wall Street Journal article surveyed the crime fiction landscape and focused on some of the new, high-profile imprints like Mulholland Books and Mysterious Press. I’m glad that the article ran because I do believe that, as a genre, what is good for one is good for all. One trend that I’ve been...

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Breaking Bad – “Thirty-eight Snub” – review

July 25, 2011
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The reason for the title of this week’s episode, “Thirty-eight Snub,” was made evident from the start with the kick-ass cold open.  Jim Beaver, the fucking fantastic character actor who played Ellsworth in Deadwood and Vietnam Joe in John From Cincinnati, knocked it out the park as a gun-dealer hooking Walt up with a thirty-eight snub...

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Jesus Angel Garcia and Nik Korpon at Cyclops Books in Baltimore

July 24, 2011
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Jesus Angel Garcia and Nik Korpon at Cyclops Books in Baltimore

Jesus Angel Garcia brought his traveling roadshow/revival to Cyclops Books in Baltimore last night along with Baltimore’s young noir son, Nik Korpon. The country mice of Spinetingler HQ headed downtown from the wilds of Northern Maryland to hitch their wagons up to the group for the night. Cyclops is a book store, art gallery,...

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The Adjustment by Scott Phillips – review

July 19, 2011
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The Adjustment by Scott Phillips – review

The Adjustment, the long-awaited new novel from Scott Phillips, is the story of Wayne Ogden, a former supply sergeant in the Quartermaster Corps trying to slip back into regular life in Wichita, Kansas after blackmarketeering and pimping across the European Theater during WWII.  Though his current title may be that of PR man for...

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Breaking Bad – “Box Cutter” – review

July 18, 2011
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Breaking Bad – “Box Cutter” – review

The cold open of season four’s premiere episode of Breaking Bad, “Box Cutter,” flashes back to the late chemist Gale setting up the laboratory that Walt and Jesse now work in. We witness him using the episode’s titular tool to bust open some, you know, fucking boxes, and discuss with Fring that while he...

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The Shark-Infested Custard by Charles Willeford – Review

July 15, 2011
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The Shark-Infested Custard by Charles Willeford – Review

It sure as shit ain’t hard to see why Jason Starr, the author of white collar noirs like Hard Feelings and Nothing Personal, is such a fan of The Shark-Infested Custard.  Seems to the Nerd that Starr has been talking this book up in every other interview I’ve read with him over the years, and...

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Hard Cold Whisper by Michael Hemmingson

July 13, 2011
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Hard Cold Whisper by Michael Hemmingson

Sometimes the provenance of acquiring a book can be interesting, in other words how exactly did you come to a book or it to you. Ever since I read Blake Butler’s Scorch Atlas I’ve been aware of HTML Giant. Last night I found my way there by way of a Benjamin Whitmer link. The...

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Countdown To Breaking Bad

July 13, 2011
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This weekend, there’s a reason to stay up late and make a date with your TV. Breaking Bad returns. To prepare, we’ve recently watched all of season three, over the course of just a few days. It’s like that blue meth Walt and Jesse are famous for cooking; once you start, you can’t stop....

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Fiction: THE RACCOON by Al Onia

July 12, 2011
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The rat closed on the raccoon kittens, intent on a tender meal. The mother raccoon struck before the rat had a chance to turn and use its formidable teeth on the mature raccoon. Into the water devoted parent and hunter-now-prey tumbled. Enduring the painful bites, the mother raccoon used her determination and superior size...

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THE PERFECT DETECTIVE: Guest article by Thomas Kaufman

July 11, 2011
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THE PERFECT DETECTIVE:  Guest article by Thomas Kaufman

When I write about Willis Gidney, the private eye in STEAL THE SHOW, I have to acknowledge a debt to Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett. These two guys blazed a trail, it’s impossible to talk about detective fiction without a top o’ the hat to them. And yet, they wrote about detectives who were...

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