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Showing posts from March, 2012

Autographed Copy of Rat Pack

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Shane Stevens' fourth novel takes place over a single night as four African-American youths prowl New York City’s dirty streets, hunting for the big score they hope will finally free them from their hopeless lives of crushing poverty. Once billed as "The American Clockwork Orange", Rat Pack is a brutal book, but far more humane than Burgess' novel. Clocking in around 200 pages, Stevens succeeds in crafting something both shocking and deeply moving without wasting a single word.

Rob Warren Books in Manhattan has a gorgeous copy for sale. Mr. Warren is extremely nice and very helpful. He's managed to acquire what's easily the best looking copy of a Stevens' book I've ever seen. More than that, his copy is a 1st edition hardcover and—it’s signed! If I had the money, I would buy it in an instant.

If you happen to be a Stevens fan and can afford it, snatch it up now.

And if you happen to be Lucy, then I'd like to talk to you...

Quest for Dignity

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“For those of us who believe that the writer must grapple with the moral issues of his day, that he must view himself in the context of events and not just from his own personal needs, these are dangerous times. The urge to be a full-time revolutionary in a country so desperately ill is overwhelming."

--Shane Stevens, “Quest for Dignity.” [Rev. of Soul on Ice by Eldridge Cleaver.]  The Progressive, Vol. 32, #5 May, 1969

The Man Who Stepped Up

There are things I have trouble dismissing and letting go no matter how hard I try. My relationship with my father. The car accident that killed one brother. The prison that houses the surviving brother and will continue to be his home for years.

And there are things I don’t ever want to forget -- like the fact that my wife would probably not be here today if it wasn’t for her Mamaw and her Papaw.

I’ve talked before about the awfulness of her childhood. The only thing that made it remotely bearable were those two people. They gave her all those things you’re supposed to give a child: love, encouragement, and safety. All those things our society persists in believing can only come through something as tenuous as blood -- an idea that needs to be murdered now, because her Mamaw and her Papaw made a bid for custody, only to be informed by the lawyer it would never work because they weren’t actually her Mamaw and her Papaw.

Society focused on the fact that her Mamaw was technically her gre…

Bullets For A Ballot

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Looking forward to starting the new Cash Laramie adventure this weekend:
In the town of Bear Pines, Mrs. Tolliver has announced she is running for the mayoral office. She’s the first woman to run as a candidate which divides the residents and sets the town into a tailspin. U.S. Marshal Cash Laramie is sent in to maintain peace and order and to protect Tolliver and her family from powerful allies of the incumbent, Mayor Nolan. In a bid to force her to quit the race, things turn ugly ... and deadly. Surrounded by killers who will stop at nothing to make sure Mrs. Tolliver is not elected, Cash wires Cheyenne for assistance, but will help arrive in time?
It's available now from Amazon.

Doolittle

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Omaha cop Matt Worth has screwed up both his marriage and his career. After his superiors assign him the shit detail of patrolling a robbery-prone supermarket, there’s only one thing that gets him through the long nights of asking, “Paper or plastic?” Gwen. The cute checkout girl.

One night when his crush kills her abusive boyfriend, Worth makes a decision that will change everything. He’s not going to call it in. He’s going to cover it up. He’ll dump the body and the hot rod.

That’s when everything goes to hell...

Reading Sean Doolittle’s The Cleanup has been one of the few things that has made all the trips to the eye specialist in Indianapolis remotely bearable. I’m not going to cheapen this book with some slick attempt to be witty. All I want to say is if you’ve never read Doolittle, you’re missing out. He’s a first class writer who impresses me every time with his storytelling ability and keen understanding of character.

The only thing I don’t understand is why he’s not atop the …

Elementary Is A Good Name For It

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After the success of the Guy Ritchie films and the BBC program, it was only a matter of time before an American network offered their own take on Sherlock Holmes. Recently, the upcoming CBS version has made a lot of press over the casting of Lucy Liu as Doctor Watson.

People don’t like the idea of Watson being a girl.

I don’t take umbrage with the idea of a female Watson. Very little in fiction, I think, is so sarcosanct as to be beyond tinkering—especially, if the tinkering can take old material in a new direction or emphasis a theme or character dynamic in an original way. Since he’s firmly a part of global popular culture, The Great Detective, his companions, and his enemies have taken on a life that transcends Doyle’s writing. The idea itself has picked up concepts and audience imposed perceptions that aren’t in the cannon. In Doyle’s stories, the drug abusing Holmes is often lazy (when he’s not on a case), very arrogant, and he never wears a deerstalker (that’s from the Paget ill…