Collects the editor's all-time favorite holiday crime stories, including tales by such authors as Arthur Conan Doyle, Sara Paretsky, Peter Lovesey, O. Henry, Damon Runyon, Agatha Christie, and Robert Louis Stevenson.
An unstoppable anthology of crime stories culled from Black Mask magazine the legendary publication that turned a pulp phenomenon into literary mainstream. Black Mask was the apotheosis of noir. It was the magazine where the first hardboiled detective story, which was written by Carroll John Daly appeared. It was the slum in which such American literary titans like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler got their start, and it was the home of stories with titles like “Murder Is Bad Luck,” “Ten Carets of Lead,” and “Drop Dead Twice.” Collected here is best of the best, the hardest of the hardboiled, and the darkest of the dark of America’s finest crime fiction. This masterpiece collection represents a high watermark of America’s underbelly. Crime writing gets no better than this. Featuring • Deadly Diamonds • Dancing Rats • A Prize Fighter Fighting for His Life • A Parrot that Wouldn’t Talk Including • Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon as it was originally published • Lester Dent's Luck in print for the first time From the Trade Paperback edition.
Author: Jim Thompson
This adventurous volume, with its companion devoted to the 1930s and 40s, presents a rich vein of modern American writing too often neglected in mainstream literary histories. Evolving out of the terse and violent hardboiled style of the pulp magazines, noir fiction expanded over the decades into a varied and innovative body of writing. Tapping deep roots in the American literary imagination, the novels in this volume explore themes of crime, guilt, deception, obsessive passion, murder, and the disintegrating psyche. With visionary and often subversive force, they create a dark and violent mythology out of the most commonplace elements of modern life. The raw power of their vernacular style has profoundly influenced contemporary American culture and writing. Far from formulaic, they are ambitious works which bend the rules of genre fiction to their often experimental purposes.
The Shadow, The Spider, The Avenger, Doc Savage, The Black Bat, The Phantom Detective - these swashbuckling heroes of mid-20th-century pulp fiction all had one thing in common: They fought crime from outside the law, unhindered by red tape and unmindful of such legal niceties as due process. They fought with fists and guns, for the most part hiding their true identities beneath outlandish costume and grotesque disguises. This collection of essays by distinguished pulp-fiction aficionados chronicles the era of single-character magazines from offbeat angles and with keen insight. The pieces herein analyze key stories and characters while offering rare, behind-the-scenes glimpses of authors and editors at work, crafting and polishing the pulp-paper fever dreams that enthralled millions of young readers during the Great Depression, World War II, and beyond. Ed Hulse, editor of BLOOD 'N' THUNDER, the award-winning journal of adventure, mystery and melodrama, has assembled these affectionate essays with loving care and a discerning eye for the high-water marks in this phase of American popular culture. This third volume in the series BLOOD 'N' THUNDER PRESENTS, like its predecessors, is profusely illustrated with pulp-magazine covers and original artwork.
The Twenty-Year Death
Author: Ariel S. Winter
Publisher: Titan Books (US, CA)
THERE’S NEVER BEEN A BOOK LIKE THE TWENTY-YEAR DEATH A breathtaking first novel written in the form of three separate crime novels, each set in a different decade and penned in the style of a different giant of the mystery genre. 1931— The body found in the gutter in France led the police inspector to the dead man’s beautiful daughter—and to her hot-tempered American husband. 1941— A hardboiled private eye hired to keep a movie studio’s leading lady happy uncovers the truth behind the brutal slaying of a Hollywood starlet. 1951— A desperate man pursuing his last chance at redemption finds himself with blood on his hands and the police on his trail... Three complete novels that, taken together, tell a single epic story, about an author whose life is shattered when violence and tragedy consume the people closest to him. It is an ingenious and emotionally powerful debut performance from literary detective and former bookseller Ariel S. Winter, one that establishes this talented newcomer as a storyteller of the highest caliber.
Author: Anthony Olcott
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
The detektiv, Russia's version of the murder mystery, has conquered what in Soviet days loved to call itself 'the most reading nation on earth.' The first full-length study of the genre, Russian Pulp vividly illustrates how Russians understand law-breaking and crime, policemen and criminals in ways wholly different from those of Westerners. After explaining why solving a crime is always a social function in Russia, Anthony Olcott examines the staples of thrillers-sex, theft, and murder-to demonstrate that Russians see police officer and criminal, thief and victim, as part of a single continuum: all are products of human imperfection. Offering a unique window into Russian society and culture, this book is intended for all students of Russia, from those making first acquaintance to those who have worked for years to understand this puzzling country and its people.
We now live in enlightened times that reassure us that, far from being a lower form of literature, pulp fiction is the term for what the best storytelling provides - pyrotechnic thrills, shocks galore and excitement by the bucketload! From cops, both straight and crooked, to ruthless bigshots, shady operators, femmes fatales and damsels in distress. Including gangsters, drifters, common crooks, shady attomeys to molls with a heart of gold, enjoy a rollercoaster ride through popular literature's best pulp writers. The MBO of Pulp Action includes the talents of Charles Willeford, Ed McBain, Bill Pronzini, Ed Gorman, Lawrence Block, John D. Macdonald, William Campbell Gault, Bruno Fischer, Mark Timlin, Joe R. Lansdale and many of the classic Black Mask magazine...
The Talented Mr. Ripley
Author: Patricia Highsmith
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
"Tom Ripley is one of the most interesting characters in world literature." —Anthony Minghella, director of the 1999 film The Talented Mr. Ripley Since his debut in 1955, Tom Ripley has evolved into the ultimate bad boy sociopath. Here, in this first Ripley novel, we are introduced to suave Tom Ripley, a young striver, newly arrived in the heady world of Manhattan. A product of a broken home, branded a "sissy" by his dismissive Aunt Dottie, Ripley meets a wealthy industrialist who hires him to bring his playboy son, Dickie Greenleaf, back from gallivanting in Italy. Soon Ripley's fascination with Dickie's debonair lifestyle turns obsessive as he finds himself enraged by Dickie's ambivalent affections for Marge, a charming American dilettante. A dark reworking of Henry James's ?The Ambassadors?, ?The Talented Mr. Ripley? serves as an unforgettable introduction to this smooth confidence man, whose talent for murder and self-invention is chronicled in four subsequent Ripley novels.
Essential reading for all armchair detectives, this collection of 33 classic whodunits is the cream of crime writing.
The Killer Inside Me
Author: Jim Thompson
Publisher: Mulholland Books
Everyone in the small town of Central City, Texas loves Lou Ford. A deputy sheriff, Lou's known to the small-time criminals, the real-estate entrepreneurs, and all of his coworkers--the low-lifes, the big-timers, and everyone in-between--as the nicest guy around. He may not be the brightest or the most interesting man in town, but nevertheless, he's the kind of officer you're happy to have keeping your streets safe. The sort of man you might even wish your daughter would end up with someday. But behind the platitudes and glad-handing lurks a monster the likes of which few have seen. An urge that has already claimed multiple lives, and cost Lou his brother Mike, a self-sacrificing construction worker fell to his death on the job in what was anything but an accident. A murder that Lou is determined to avenge--and if innocent people have to die in the process, well, that's perfectly all right with him. In THE KILLER INSIDE ME, Thompson goes where few novelists have dared to go, giving us a pitch-black glimpse into the mind of the American Serial Killer years before Charles Manson, John Wayne Gacy, and Brett Easton Ellis's American Psycho, in the novel that will forever be known as the master performance of one of the greatest crime novelists of all time.
Author: Robert Sampson
Publisher: Popular Press
The second volume within this series presents more than fifty series characters within pulp fiction, selected to represent four popular story types from the 1907–1939 pulps—scientific detectives, occult and psychic investigators, jungle men, and adventurers in interplanetary romance. Some characters—Tarzan, John Carter of Mars, Craig Kennedy, Anthony (Buck) Rogers—became internationally known. Others are now almost forgotten, except by collectors and specialists.
An amoral young tramp. A beautiful, sullen woman with an inconvenient husband. A problem that has only one grisly solution--a solution that only creates other problems that no one can ever solve. First published in 1934 and banned in Boston for its explosive mixture of violence and eroticism, The Postman Always Rings Twice is a classic of the roman noir. It established James M. Cain as a major novelist with an unsparing vision of America's bleak underside, and was acknowledged by Albert Camus as the model for The Stranger.
A reference and overview of the genre of crime fiction, primarily covering the 1950s onwards, although major earlier writers, such as Agatha Christie and Raymond Chandler, also have entries.
Author: Justin Gifford
Publisher: Temple University Press
"Lush sex and stark violence colored Black and served up raw by a great Negro writer," promised the cover of Run Man Run, Chester Himes' pioneering novel in the black crime fiction tradition. In Pimping Fictions, Justin Gifford provides a hard-boiled investigation of hundreds of pulpy paperbacks written by Himes, Donald Goines, and Iceberg Slim (aka Robert Beck), among many others. Gifford draws from an impressive array of archival materials to provide a first-of-its-kind literary and cultural history of this distinctive genre. He evaluates the artistic and symbolic representations of pimps, sex-workers, drug dealers, and political revolutionaries in African American crime literature-characters looking to escape the racial containment of prisons and the ghetto. Gifford also explores the struggles of these black writers in the literary marketplace, from the era of white-owned publishing houses like Holloway House-that fed books and magazines like Players to eager black readers-to the contemporary crop of African American women writers reclaiming the genre as their own.
The pulp, Super-Detective, with its adventure hero, Jim Anthony, started out as a competitor to Doc Savage. After 10 issues, the publisher turned Anthony into a hardboiled detective. This Flip Book, with a book on each side, explores both worlds. The front side is Legion of Robots, a Doc Savage style novel from the issue of November 1940, written by Victor Rousseau. The flipside has Murder's Migrants, a hardboiled story from March 1943, by the team of Robert Leslie Bellem and W.T. Ballard. Introductions that describe the behind-the-scenes story of Super-Detective are provided by, respectively, John McMahan and John Wooley.