Saturday, October 23, 2004

Hard, Hard City.....Welcome to LA Mr. Fusilli

Once again I had the pleasure of meeting Jim Fusilli and his beautiful wife at Mysteries To Die For in Thousand Oaks. Jim is on tour promoting his fourth Terry Orr novel Hard, Hard City.

Jim read from his novel and answered questions from the crowd. Fortunately no one was screaming at him (Right, Jim?). Jim went on to talk about his music reviews for the Wall Street Journal and his experience, thanks to Robert Parker, writing mystery reviews for the Boston Globe. See this article for details.

Jim has a few new book scheduled for next year. One will be Pet Sounds based upon the Beach Boys. This will a first person essay style book. He told us about a panel that he was asked to moderate in NY with Brian Wilson being one of the panelists. He was awe struck as the Beach Boy's Pet Sounds had a major effect on his life.

Next up will be a stand alone called A Slaughter of Angels which takes place in 1947. The story focuses on the murder of young girls in their Confirmation dresses in a largely Irish community. The Italian police chief is not skilled enough to solve the case on his own. The book also involves a former OSS agent who introduces what is later to become known from the FBI as a profiler.


If you think I have been drinking, well.....Nope. When I signed on to Blogger tonight this came up on the news page....

CHeck this out and let me know your thoughts.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Red Jungle.. Jacket Copy

Just in from Kent Harrington...

This is the jacket copy for his new novel RED JUNGLE...

Red Jungle is the archetypal new-wave thriller from Kent Harrington, author of the classic noir novel Dia de los Muertos. Set in Guatemala, Red Jungle steam-rolls over the tired formulae of good guys and bad guys. Red Jungle springs full-blown from the author’s intimate knowledge of the miasmal reality that is modern Guatemala, with its dark, semi-feudal economic under-pinnings—the legacy of a 100-year-and-counting tyranny orchestrated by U.S. corporate overlords. Red Jungle pulls the cover off the Big Lies of neo-liberal economics and makes clear the real reasons for the decades of underdevelopment plaguing Latin America. If you ever wanted to know where you coffee really comes from. . . .

. . .

Russell Cruz-Price is the child of an elite Guatemalan family with a hyphenated last name, and the circumstances of his birth and upbringing have conspired to give him a hyphenated Life as well. Born of an American father and high-class, European-Guatemalan mother whose murder, supposedly at the hands of communist insurgents, cheated him out of a normal childhood, Russell has come to view the world as a hostile place. Rejected by his father, Russell has been raised by U.S. military schools and has attended U.S. colleges, where he was a brilliant student of economics.
Now working as a journalist for a famous English newspaper, Russell has been sent to cover a dangerous and politically chaotic Guatemala, where coffee prices are crashing and neo-liberal policies delivered from Washington have failed to keep the country from splitting apart at the seams.
Russell has become friends with a young German hot-shot archaeologist, Mahler, who believes a priceless Mayan antiquity—the possibly apocryphal and legendarily lost Red Jaguar—can be found on a failing coffee plantation. The two men pool their resources and enter the jungle in pursuit of fame and fortune.
Russell falls in love with the one woman in Guatemala he should definitely stay away from. Beatrice is an English girl who’s been to Oxford, but she’s also the beautiful young wife of the notorious General Carlos Selva, candidate for the presidency. In a country where life is cheap, Russell’s own life just got discounted to zero.
The country, Russell, Beatrice, and the general all head towards disaster as Russell searches for the Red Jaguar. His love affair with Beatrice will force him into the country’s political vortex, and Russell will gamble his all in a game where not only his future, but that of the entire country of Guatemala is at stake, as it attempts to throw off the colonial yoke of the past hundred years and move into the 21st century.
Any comments? This book will be published by Dennis McMillan Publications

Hard Case Crime

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of reading another of the wonderful titles from Hard Case Crime. These books have the appearance and feel of the pulp novels of the 40's and 50's and are written in a similar style. On the website is the line up of the first 10 novels that are being produced thoughout the year. Not only are the books outstanding, the cover art is to die for...

So far there are four titles available with two more coming out in Novemeber. They are a mix of reissues (Grifter's Game by Block and Top of the Heap by Earl Stanley Gardner) and well as originals (Fade to Blonde by Max Collins and Little Girl Lost by Richard Aleas).

I'm particularly looking forward to Domenic Stansberry's new one, THE CONFESSION which will be out in November and Allan Guthrie's KISS HER GOODBYE which will be out in March.

Here is a teaser for a future cover.....

If you have read any of the Hard Crime title, which one is your favorite (good luck choosing)?

Charlie Williams....DEADFOLK

Fellow Cabana Boy Charlie Williams has recently undated his website to now include comments. As he mentions on his webpage, he still working on how get a proper blog up and running. So in the meantime, brighten Charlie's day and send him a few comments. Any comments.

Oh, yes, I almost forgot, Charlie's book DEADFOLK is now out. Yes, Charlie, even in Los Angeles.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Mystery Bookstore 4 Anniversary Pic Retrospective

I arrived at the Mystery Bookstore at the start of the party and here is who I ran into:

Ruth Francisco, who's new book is Good Morning Darkness

Then Lee Goldberg. Lee and I had a nice discussion about Fan Fic.

Then I ran into Kris Neri. Andrew Klavan is to left and Ruth Francisco to the right.

Next up, Mr. Ray Bradbury. Ray has sick of late and it is a rare treat to see the MASTER! Here is a picture of Ray and his daughter.

Here Ray is signing the original movie poster for Moby Dick.

Next up, the much underrated and awfully talented Andrew Klavan. No two books are the same and each one is better than the last. Pick this book up!!!

Then their is Thomas Perry. Tom is always the gentleman and all of his books are a treat. Butcher's Boy is still one of my alltime favorites.

Gary Phillips eneters the room and all heads turn...Plenty of laughs. Here he is with Jeff Weber on the left.

Here is Gregg Hurwitz signing his new book The Program along with Robert Tanenbaum. Tanenbaum's new book is titled The Hoax.

Here is a pic of Tanenbaum signing The Hoax.

Here is the young and talented Christopher Rice. Great guy, but so damn young, or maybe its that I'm just getting older. I thought that A DENSITY OF SOULS was good but THE SNOW GARDEN is better!

Fresh from Bouchercon and presently on tour supporting his first book is Steve Sidor. Lots of great blurbs and I had to pick it up, the book that is.

Here is Harley Jane Kozak. Finally got her to sign my copy of DATING DEAD MEN. Her next book is out after the first called DATING IS MURDER.

I finally caught up with Bill Fitzhugh to talk about his latest book RADIO ACTIVITY. We must have spent about an hour talking about how great vinyl records sound and lamented the decline of AOR radio. We both long for the good ole days of music instead of the commerical stuff. My wife Tina has decided that I need to send Bill my 6000+ collection of albums to him for safe keeping. Bill agrees. Not a chance, bud.

Here is Jodi Compton. Her first book THE 37th HOUR was great, but as we discussed probably not marketed in the right way. She had an ARC of her next book called SYMPATHY BETWEEN HUMANS.

From left ot right...Nathan Walpow, Jim Warren, and Mrs. Bob Levinson. Everytime I tried to get a pic of Bob he was on the move. Bob has a new book coming out soon. Jim Warren is probably an unknown to most. Jim has written quite few short stories, Treviscoe of Lloyd's historical mystery series, for Alfred Hitchcock and Ellery Queen mystery magazines.

Here is the person I was looking forward to meeting all month, SJ Rozan. She recognized me as one of Sarah's Cabana Boys. Gerald, she talked all about meeting you in New York. I guess we Cabana Boys are famous (for what, who knows?).

One of these days all of us Cabana Boys will get together for a few cold ones and pose for a pic. Ladies, don't get too excited, its not gonna be that kind of pic, right guys?

Last, but way not least, Ed Wright. If you haven't read CLEA'S MOON or his latest WHILE I DISAPPER : A JOHN RAY HORN NOVEL

Anatomy of a Mystery Writer

On Lee Goldberg's weblog we get to see first hand what the inside of a mystery writer's arm looks like for the first time!

Damn no wonder I'm having trouble breaking into the field!

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