Jack Waters is the latest book by the Brooklyn based crime author Scott Adlerberg. I make no bones about being a fan of Adlerberg’s work. One thing I particularly like is how, as an author, he is not content just to keep hitting the same note in his work.
His debut, Spiders and Flies, dealt with the predatory ambitions of a bored American fugitive on the lam in Martinque, towards a wealthy couple visiting their young daughter who is living on the island. It read like one of those exploitation crime films that were common in the eighties.
Graveyard Love switched gears completely, and delivered a giallo-style tale of a thirty five year old psychologically disturbed loner who lives with his highly strung artist mother, and his obsession with the mysterious red headed woman who regularly visits one of the crypts in the graveyard opposite their house.
In Jack Waters, Adlerberg continues his reinvention, penning an historical crime story about a rakish New Orleans schemer, the title character, whose one great passion in life is playing cards, and whose one major dislike is people who cheat. Water’s private code gets him into trouble when he kills a man for cheating, the son of a wealthy and influential Louisianan businessman.… Read more
Late last year the German culture website, CulturMag, asked me to nominate my top 10 reads for 2017. My list is now live (and in English), along with contributions from a number of other individuals and can be seen in full here.
As usual, it is a mix of old and new fiction, as well as some of the non-fiction books I enjoyed. What were your top crime reads of 2017?
Posted in Australian crime fiction, Crime fiction and film from Mexico, Neo Noir, Pulp fiction, Pulp fiction in the 70s and 80s, Pulp paperback cover art, Ted Lewis
Tagged Day In, Day Out, Getting Carter: Ted Lewis and the Birth of Brit Noir, Grady Hendrix, Hector Aguilar Camin, Iain Ryan, Julie Szego, Laura Elizabeth Woolett, Paperbacks From Hell: The Twisted History of ‘70s and ‘80s Horror Fiction, Ted Lewis, The Jones Men, The Love of a Bad Man, The Obama Inheritance: Fifteen Tales of Conspiracy Noir, The Student, The Tainted Trial of Farah Jama, Three Hours Past Midnight, Tony Knighton, Vern E Smith
I know I am not the only one who will be glad to wave goodbye to the end of a long year. Before I head off for a few weeks break, I just want to give you all a quick heads up about a few things that are happening, that you might like to check out.
First up, a big thanks to The Segilola Salami Podcast for having me on to read from my first novel, Ghost Money. Ghost Money originally came out in 2013 and it is still a book that is dear to my heart. The story takes place in Cambodia, 1996, just as the long-running Khmer Rouge insurgency is fragmenting and competing factions of the coalition government scrambling to gain the upper hand. Missing in the chaos is businessman Charles Avery. Hired to find him is Vietnamese Australian ex-cop Max Quinlan. Anyway you can hear me read a couple of chapters, talk about the origins of the book, and why I wrote it here.
If you like what you hear and want to pick up a copy of Ghost Money, you can do so via Amazon.
The good folks at Writers Victoria have asked me to run a day-long class for emerging authors on January 15.… Read more
Posted in Australian crime fiction, Australian pulp fiction, Ghost Money, Girl Gangs, Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction & Youth Culture, 1950-1980, Gunshine State
Tagged Crime Time Podcast, Crime writing, Down and Out Books, Ghost Money, Girl Gangs Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture 1950 to 1980, Segilola Salami show, Writers Victoria
The new book I have co-edited, Girl Gangs, Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture, 1950-1980 is about many things.
It depicts the insatiable energy of post war youth and their desire to find expression through style, fashion, music and language. It is also about the just as insatiable appetite of pulp paperback publishers to hype and exploit youth culture for cheap thrills and cheap paperback sales.
One of the decisions that my co-editor, Iain McIntyre and I faced early on in putting the book together was whether or not to include the large body of nonfiction expose pulp about youth culture. For reasons of space, in the end, we decided against including these books. But they remain one of my favourite strands of pulp fiction.
These books, which were a major sub-genre of pulp from the 1950s to the early 1970s, were marketed as timely, hard hitting, insider accounts or journalistic exposes of various social issues and trends. They were factual only in the most generous sense of the word, usually taking as their starting point the latest public sensation or tabloid headline. And, more often than not, their target was the so called goings on of out of the control young people. In colourful language and with lurid, highly sexualised covers, these books capitalised on mainstream fears, concerns and, as was often the case, fascinations with young people and their activities.… Read more
Posted in Girl Gangs, Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction & Youth Culture, 1950-1980, Horwitz Publications, Monarch Books, New English Library, Pulp fiction, Pulp fiction in the 70s and 80s, Pulp Friday, Pulp paperback cover art, Scripts Publications, True crime
Tagged expose pulp fiction, Girl Gangs Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture 1950 to 1980, Youthsploitation pulp
It takes scholarly love and a fan’s enthusiasm to devote oneself to putting together a 300-plus page book dissecting obscure pulp fiction. But that is exactly what Australian writers Andrew Nette and Ian McIntyre have done with Girl Gangs, Biker Boys, and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture, 1950 to 1980.
The respected site, Literary Hub, has a terrific piece by New York crime writer, Scott Adlerberg, talking about pulp fiction and the new book on youth subculture and pulp fiction that Iain McIntyre and I have edited. You can check it out in full on their site here.
Girl Gangs, Biker Boys, and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture, 1950 to 1980 is out now through PM Press.
Posted in Australian pulp fiction, British pulp fiction, Fawcett Gold Medal Books, Girl Gangs, Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction & Youth Culture, 1950-1980, Horwitz Publications, Pulp fiction, Pulp fiction in the 70s and 80s, Pulp paperback cover art
Tagged Girl Gangs Biker Boys and Real Cool Cats: Pulp Fiction and Youth Culture 1950 to 1980, Literary Hub, Pulp fiction, Scott Adlerberg, Youth subculture