Saturday, April 19, 2014

Lesa's Latest Contest--- Sherlock Holmes fan giveaway

As posted elsewhere early Friday morning....

If you're a Sherlock Holmes fan, you might be interested in this week's giveaway, two mysteries with traces of Holmes. I'm giving away copies of Michael Robertson's Moriarty Returns a Letter and The Spook Lights Affair by Marcia Muller & Bill Pronzini. Details available at http://www.lesasbookcritiques.blogspot.com. Entries from the U.S. only, please.


-- Lesa Holstine 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Via Randy Johnson--- Glorious – Jeff Guinn

Randy reviews Glorious by Jeff Guinn here. Because of his review, I checked and the Plano Library System is going to have copies so I put a hold on one. Appropriate it is coming out next month as by then no doubt it will be 100 plus everyday and with the massive drought here, it will feel like Arizona.

Via Benjamin Leroy---A Series of Questions, a Series of Answers

A Series of Questions, a Series of Answers

The FFB List

Patti took the day off again and I missed the memo. Sorry about that folks. BV Lawson has the list and links here.


The Education of a Pulp Writer: Free ebooks!

The Education of a Pulp Writer: Free ebooks!: For the next several days I'm offering two of my collections for free. Adventures of Cash Laramie and Gideon Miles, Vol.II  and The Ed...

Via Dave Zeltserman--- Now an audiobook: Julius Katz and Archie

Now an audiobook: Julius Katz and Archie

Back Home Early

Back home early thanks to massive AETNA and WAL-MART screwup. They did not fix Sandi's insurance record as they assured her multiple times yesterday they would and had. Their failure means Sandi could not see the cancer doctor or have the IVIG infusion as scheduled. Just was able to do blood work after we payed $100 to do it.

Needless to say the patient is NOT pleased. 

FFB Review: "FAST ONE" by Paul Cain (Reviewed by Barry Ergang)

Friday means Friday’s Forgotten Books hosted by Patti Abbott here. Barry is back today with his review of FAST ONE by Paul Cain.


FAST ONE (1933) by Paul Cain
reviewed by Barry Ergang


I can enthusiastically recommend Fast One to any reader who loves the hardboiled school—especially from the pulp era—but don’t ask me for a detailed plot summary. That’s next to impossible. Suffice it to say that a tough character named Gerry Kells, who is visiting L.A. from New York and who seems to know every major racket boss in southern California, is in the first chapter framed for a murder he didn’t commit, and who spends the remainder of the book either dodging or deliberately confronting cops and hoods with words, fists, and firearms. Along the way he considers trying to take over L.A.‘s rackets himself.

It’s an aptly titled book because the story roars along at a hectic pace. The pace is aided in no small measure by Cain's staccato prose style, which almost redefines “lean and mean.” But the pace and the story’s complexity are the book’s undoing because there is no characterization for readers to relate to. Most of the players—including the principal female—are referred to only by their last names. The absence of character definition reduces them to mere names on the page. It’s frequently an effort trying to recall from one chapter to another who's who and who's done what to whom.

Fast One has long been hailed as the ne plus ultra of hardboiled gangster tales by the likes of Bill Pronzini, E.R. Hagemann, and Raymond Chandler. David A. Bowman, in his introductory essay to the 1987 Black Lizard edition I have, writes: “Cain took the hardboiled style as far as anyone would want to. Fast One is the Antarctica of hardboiled writing. There is nowhere else to go.”

Forget about any insights into the human condition or any other sorts of profound meanings. Just buckle up and go along on the wild ride.

For more on this novel or the Golden Age of Detection follow the link to the GA Detection wiki. http://gadetection.pbwiki.com/Fast-One



Barry Ergang © 2007, 2014
Former Managing Editor of Futures Mystery Anthology Magazine and First Senior Editor of Mysterical-E, Derringer winner Barry Ergang's work has appeared in numerous publications, print and electronic. His website is http://writetrack.yolasite.com/.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Education of a Pulp Writer: The Education of a Pulp Writer

 The book has a new cover  with the same great content. You can read my review here if so inclined.

The Education of a Pulp Writer: The Education of a Pulp Writer: The Education of a Pulp Writer & other stories * contains some of my earliest, darkest, and most demented characters on the fringe of ...


Ed Gorman's blog: Forgotten Books: Cross Country by Herbert Kastle

Ed Gorman's blog: Forgotten Books: Cross Country by Herbert Kastle

Do Some Damage: Why Needle mag exists

Do Some Damage: Why Needle mag exists: By Steve Weddle Back in 2010 when we started this magazine, I solicited stories from some talented folks. Some were friends, while many we...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: NASA discovers first Earth-sized planet orbiting i...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: NASA discovers first Earth-sized planet orbiting i...: NASA discovers first Earth-sized planet orbiting in life-friendly zone : For the first time, scientists have found an Earth-sized world orbi...

Reminder - Dallas MWA on Saturday, May 3, 2014

As posted elsewhere....

 9:30am is the time to hear speaker Reavis Z. Wortham.

As a boy, award-winning writer, Reavis Z. Wortham hunted and fished the river bottoms near Chicota, Texas, the inspiration for the fictional setting for The Rock Hole. He was born in Paris, Texas, but lived in Dallas. “We grew up in the city and went to school there, but every Friday evening my parents put us in the car and made the 120-mile drive to Chicota, where we truly lived at my grandparents’ place in the country until Sunday evening, when we came back to the city. Our true home was that little farm in Lamar County.” Reavis graduated from W.W. Samuell High School in Dallas. He attended Eastfield Junior College and graduated with a B.S in Industry and Technology from East Texas State University (now Texas A&M, Commerce). Upon graduation, he began a teaching career in Garland, Texas. He received a Masters in Education from E.T.S.U. and after ten years in the classroom, Reavis took the job as Communications Specialist for the GISD and remained in that department until he retired as Director of Communications in 2011.

He is the author of Doreen’s 24 HR Eat Gas Now CafĂ©. Humor editor and frequent contributor for Texas Fish and Game Magazine, he writes on everything from fishing to deer hunting. In addition to several other magazines, his work has appeared in American Cowboy and Texas Sporting Journal. A retired educator of 35 years, he and wife Shana live in Frisco, Texas. They have two daughters, Chelsea and Megan.

Since 1988, Reavis has written a self-syndicated weekly outdoor column for numerous Texas newspapers.



Please turn off cell phones during program and refrain from talking among yourselves while the speaker is talking. Try to keep your questions "general" rather than very specific to your own personal plot -- this will be more helpful to the whole audience.

The Dallas MWASW group meets the first Saturday of each month at Texas Land & Cattle, 812 South Central Expressway, Richardson, TX 75080. Meeting time is 9:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. There is a $5.00 door fee, cash only (correct change greatly appreciated). All who attend are invited to remain for lunch. Contact info: james@gaskin.com

James
--
James E. Gaskin
http://www.gaskin.com
Writer / Consultant / Speaker
Latest book: Email From a Dead Friend (Kindle)

Via Western Fiction Review-- Little Man and the Dixon County War

Little Man and the Dixon County War

Writer Beware®: The Blog: Another Small Press Horror Story: Silver Publishing is Gone

Writer Beware®: The Blog: Another Small Press Horror Story: Silver Publishing is Gone

The Education of a Pulp Writer: A Review of Interest (To Me, Anyway) *

The Education of a Pulp Writer: A Review of Interest (To Me, Anyway) *: Check it out. *Swiped from Bill Crider. Always steal from the best, right?

Review: "Destroyer Angel: An Anna Pigeon Novel" by Nevada Barr

It was supposed to be a simple and relaxing float trip for National Park Service Ranger Anna Pigeon and friends. Heath Jarod and her daughter, Elizabeth, will be along as will Leah and her daughter, Katie. Both the girls are teens and have little in common. The Fox River in Northern Minnesota is the destination. The trip is to serves as a much needed break for Anna as well as a way to test various methods and equipment for paraplegics to access the wildness. For Heath the trip is another step in trying to get her life back after the fall that broke her back.

Too much group togetherness causes Anna to go off to the river by herself for a little personal time at the end of a very long day. That loner instinct may ultimately save all their lives when a group of four men arrive in camp. They are not here to enjoy the beauty of the north woods or the companionship of their fellow travelers. They are there on a kidnapping for ransom mission and have very specific targets in mind--- Leah and Katie. The men may be much more at home in the city, but they have a plan, weapons, and plenty of cruelty and find the women without weapons and with no cell service no way to reach the outside.

What follow is a sort of Die Hard type scenario as Anna uses the element of surprise to begin to turn the odds in the captives. As the stress for all ratchets up and the unforgiving environment takes a toll it becomes questionable who will survive this rolling north woods confrontation.

The 19th book in the series that began with Track of the Cat is a good one. While there is plenty of action and mystery involved, human psychology is the primary component of the book. Delving into the mind of Anna as well as the other characters to showcase how things are being dealt with as various events occur occupy large sections of the book. Despite that happening, the overall pace the story remains constant steadily pulling readers along to the ultimate final violent confrontation. The book contains the briefest of mentions of earlier events making it possible to read as a stand-alone if you are new to the series.

Destroyer Angel: An Anna Pigeon Novel  
Nevada Barr
Minotaur Books (St. Martin’s Publishing Group)
2014
ISBN# 978-0-312-61458-4
Hardback (also available as an e-book and audio)
350 Pages
$26.95

Material supplied by the good folks of the Plano Texas Public Library System.
Kevin R. Tipple ©2014

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Playoffs

Stars got the Ducks in their first round and the Mavs got the Spurs. Does not look good for us Dallas fans in either case.

Ed Gorman's blog: Forgotten Films: The Man From Laramie

Ed Gorman's blog: Forgotten Films: The Man From Laramie

Writers Who Kill: An Interview With Janet Evanovich

Writers Who Kill: An Interview With Janet Evanovich: I knew Janet Evanovich needed no introduction when I mentioned this interview to my sister, the magazine reader...

Via Mystery Scene-- A VISIT TO CHINATOWN WITH HENRY CHANG

MAKE MINE MYSTERY: The Quicksand on Your Desk

MAKE MINE MYSTERY: The Quicksand on Your Desk: by Janis Patterson On my desk there is a dangerous sink of quicksand that can pull me down in a minute. I’ll bet there’s one of your des...

The Passing Tramp: Worsleying around with the Golden Age of Detective...

The Passing Tramp: Worsleying around with the Golden Age of Detective...: It has taken me a while to get around to this, but here is Part Three of my look at Lucy Worsley's genre survey  A Very British Murder ....

Via Sons Of Spade-- The Contractors (Jon Cantrell) by Harry Hunsicker

Jochem Vandersteen reviews The Contractors (Jon Cantrell) by Harry Hunsicker

My review is here

Ed Gorman's blog: TV NEWS The Final Season of 'Justified' Must Get Back to the 'Core 3'

Ed Gorman's blog: TV NEWS The Final Season of 'Justified' Must Get Back to the 'Core 3'

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Adventures In Writing: SONGBIRD -- An Award Finalist!

Adventures In Writing: SONGBIRD -- An Award Finalist!:   Bill Crider (writing as Colby Jackson) has landed on the Western Fictioneers Peacemaker Award Finalist list.  This is a great, fun ...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Att...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Att...: Amazon.com: Fevre Dream eBook: Rachel Lampi: Kindle Store : New York police detective Sam Cordray is returning to the force after a year-lon...

MAKE MINE MYSTERY: Jenny Milchman Explores Why Writers Write Mysterie...

MAKE MINE MYSTERY: Jenny Milchman Explores Why Writers Write Mysterie...: Jenny Milchman's journey to publication took thirteen years, happening in the end thanks to one very special member of the mys...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: 2014 Pulitzer Prize Winners Include Donna Tartt, A...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: 2014 Pulitzer Prize Winners Include Donna Tartt, A...: 2014 Pulitzer Prize Winners Include Donna Tartt, Annie Baker

Monday, April 14, 2014

WELCOME TO HELL ~ by Glenn Walker: Legacy of the Blue Falcon

WELCOME TO HELL ~ by Glenn Walker: Legacy of the Blue Falcon: There was a dead zone in the middle of the 1970s when we really didn't have superheroes on Saturday morning television. Oh, they wer...

Cracked Rearview Mirror Blog: Tuesday's Overlooked Films: Crime Wave Starring St...

Cracked Rearview Mirror Blog: Tuesday's Overlooked Films: Crime Wave Starring St...: This 1954 police procedural crime movie directed by André De Toth stars Sterling Hayden, Gene Nelson, Phyllis Kirk, and a young Charles ...

Via The Passive Voice--- Stand Up For Yourself

Stand Up For Yourself

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Rejection Letters I've Received Inexplicably Not I...

Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine: Rejection Letters I've Received Inexplicably Not I...: 12 Incredibly Ill-Advised Rejection Letters

Anne R. Allen's Blog: The 10 Commandments of Social Media Etiquette for ...

Anne R. Allen's Blog: The 10 Commandments of Social Media Etiquette for ...: W hen I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the importance of commenting on blogs to raise your social media profile, I forgot to say one ...

Via Erika Dreifus (The Practicing Writer) -- Monday Markets for Writers

Monday Markets for Writers

Mystery Fanfare: Cartoon of the Day: Crime Scene 1

Mystery Fanfare: Cartoon of the Day: Crime Scene 1: HT: Doc Quatermass

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Via The Passive Voice-- Value Propositions

Value Propositions

Sample Sunday: Chapter One Excerpt from "The Girl Who Wanted To Be Sherlock Holmes" by Bill Crider

You may remember the below piece running awhile back. I have this book in my TBR pile and still have not gotten to it. A sad state for many of the books in my TBR pile. While primarily known for his Sheriff Dan Rhodes series, Bill does a lot of different things under the writing big top. The excerpt below comes from his humorous young adult novel The Girl Who Wanted To Be Sherlock Holmes. A read that is also suitable for us adults.

Amazon Synopsis: “Shirley Holmes believes she's a descendant of another Holmes. Sherlock. You say he's a fictional character? Don't try to tell that to Shirley. When there's a murder at her high school, Shirley's determined to find the killer, along with Ralph, her willing "Watson." THE GIRL WHO WANTED TO BE SHERLOCK HOLMES is fast and fun for all ages.”

Available as an e-book, you can pick up your copy here.

                                                                      Chapter 1

            Before I tell you about finding the dead man, I have to tell you about a girl I know.
            Her name's Shirley Holmes, and her name is very important to her.  That's because about a hundred years ago, more or less, there was a famous detective named Sherlock Holmes.
            Shirley Holmes.  Sherlock Holmes.
            You see the connection?  Neither do I, since as I tried to explain to Shirley, Sherlock Holmes is a fictional character, not a real person.
            "He's just a person in stories," is the way I put it.  "He's not real."
            "And just how do you know that, Ralph-o?" she asked, looking down at me.  She's about the same height I am, which is five-seven, but somehow she seems taller.  I don't know how she does it.
            And that's just one of the annoying things about her. Another one is that she never fails to call me The Ralphster, or Ralph-o, or Ralphola, or The Ralphmeister.  It’s not very dignified if you ask me.
            Of course Ralph's my name; I can't deny that, as much as I wish that I could.  If I'd had any say-so in it, I'd have been called Clint, or maybe Thorne, like a guy on the soap opera that my father watches every day.  Maybe you've seen it.  The Bold and the Beautiful.  But of course I didn't have any say-so, and I got named Ralph.  It could be worse, I guess.  I could have been named Fauntleroy, maybe, or Alphonse.
            I can see that I've drifted off the point here, which is something that I'm prone to do, according to Ms. Turkel, my English teacher.  She's always writing crabby little notes in red ink in the margin of my papers, saying things like "This is really very interesting, Ralph, but what does it have to do with your thesis?" 
            She calls me Ralph, naturally.  All the teachers do.  The name's right there on my Permanent Record, so what can I do about it?
            But I was telling you about Shirley.  She has red hair and green eyes and freckles, and the truth is I like the way she looks a whole lot, but I'd never come out and tell her that.  We're both juniors at Harry Whittington High School, and we take a lot of the same classes.
            We've known each other a long time, ever since second grade, but I've only noticed how nice she looks in the last year or so.  I never paid much attention to things like that about girls very much before, but I've started noticing it pretty often since about the ninth grade.  It has a lot to do with hormones, according to Mr. Wilder.  He teaches biology, so he knows what he's talking about.

Available as an e-book, you can pick up your copy here.




Bill Crider ©2010
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