Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ruminating In My Pants #8: The REAL Crime Summer Reads

While pissing away the evening on twitter, I found out from the always informative Sarah Weinman that NPR has put up a summer reading list on their website. How nice of them, right? I checked that shit out, found that they had a section for mystery/crime novels.

A quick peek at that list and you can tell that the Nerd's blood was no doubt angried up toot-fucking-sweet.

After voicing my disappointment via the sad soapbox that is twitter, short story wunderkind Keith Rawson suggested that I do my own anti-NPR summer reading list. I, you know, fucking concurred and lo, here is the fucking list.

The Nerd Pimpeth Thusly:

1. FAKE ID by JASON STARR (Hardcase Crime, May 26. 2009)

Now you're thinking, Nerd, doesn't Jason Starr have a book coming out in August called PANIC ATTACK? Why isn't that one on your list? Well, dear reader, I'm sort of excited about that one, but Fake ID is one from Starr's early period where he was just letting it rip. After The Follower I have begun to fear that Starr has moved too far into the main stream with his fiction. I mean, The Follower had some great frat boy douchebag characters in it, but the overall story was much more pf a traditional thriller than noir ass-kicker. I've been waiting for Fake ID to hit America for years now, and thanks to Charles Ardai and the Hardcase crew, the dream is fucking well realized at last.

2. HOGDOGGIN' by ANTHONY NEIL SMITH (Bleak House Books, June 1, 2009)

Unlike everything else on this list, I've read Hogdoggin' already. Hell, as you well know I've fucking pimped for it already by participating in Smith's kick ass HOGDOGGIN' VIRTUAL MOTORCYCLE RALLY. My review of the book will be up on Bookspot Central on June the fucking first, also known as HOGDOGGIN' MONDAY. In other words, I've supported the shit out of this beast of a book. Well, dear reader, I've said it before and I'll say it a-fucking-gain: I don't pimp for shit I don't fucking straight-up love. Order that shit now, thank the Nerd later.

3. BURY ME DEEP by MEGAN ABBOTT (Simon & Schuster, July 7, 2009)

I've reviewed all three of Megan Abbott's books here at the site and she started out super fucking strong and has only gotten better as she goes along. Not to put the pressure on, but hopes are sky-fucking-high for her latest. Abbott's one of the true originals working today, and her take on the forties and fifties that has been covered in countless films is unlike any Widmark or Mitchum black-and-white classic you'll ever see.

4. THE DEPUTY by VICTOR GISCHLER (Bleak House Books, August 2009)

Gischler's Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse sure as shit kicked my ass and I'm definitely pumped as all hell for Vampire A Go-Go to drop on September 1st, but I'm even more excited for Gischler's return to crime with The Deputy. Expectations are high, but fuck, this is the dude that wrote The Pistol Poets. You better believe his ass is gonna deliver the goods like fucking John Holmes...before coke and AIDS and all that shit did him in, that is.

5. STAIRWAY TO HELL by CHARLIE WILLIAMS (Serpent's Tail Press, August 20, 2009)

Charlie Williams hasn't given us a book since 2006 when he wrapped up the Mangel Trilogy, one of the most fucked up and hilarious series in recent years. Stairway to Hell marks his triumphant return. It's got soul-swapping and David Bowie and Jimmy Page and...it sounds fucking insane is what I'm trying to say. Here's hoping it kicks more ass than Royston Blake on a crazy night bouncing at Hopper's.

So there you go, dear readers, my list to cancel out the lame-fest that is the NPR list. Granted, that won't hold your noir-craving junkie ass for the three whole fucking months of summer, but it's a damned good start. Expect reviews of all of the above as I catch 'em, dear reader.

Expect it like death and fucking taxes. And pledge drives.


Scott Phillips said...

can not argue with nary a one of them, chief...

Stephen Blackmoore said...

This is an excellent list. Now I know what I'm doing this summer.

Kent said...

Top notch list right there. I read FAKE ID years ago, but maybe I'll give it a quick re-read while waiting for Hogdoggin' Monday to get here. The rest, just a resounding HELL YEAH! on 'em all.

BTW: Have you read Gischler's GUN MONKEYS? It's every bit as good as his other novels, but in the first person (ala THE DEPUTY).

CrimeNerd said...

Kent -

I have read Gun Monkeys. I've read every Gischler from Gun Monkeys to Apocalypse. Nary a one that didn't kick ass.

Unknown said...

Sweet, dude, way better than the NPR list.

I can't wait for the new Charlie Williams. The guy just keeps people waiting too long between books.

And I can't disagree with a single one of these, great picks and it's giving me an idea . . .

Gordon Harries said...

The new Megan Abbott rocks really, really hard.

Girl got it goin' on.

Kieran Shea said...

those are some tasty selections for the basement bunker.