Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Bullet Points with Extra Noir

• If you haven’t already heard, those entrepreneurial folks behind Out of the Gutter magazine have gone into the book-publishing biz. They already have four volumes forthcoming, including a reprint of John D. MacDonald’s On the Make (originally published in 1955 as A Bullet for Cinderella). Meanwhile, OOTG has begun accepting contributions to its seventh edition, themed “UK vs. U.S.” Submission guidelines are here.

• In its survey of the historical crime-fiction subgenre, Publishers Weekly reports: “The past decade has seen an explosion in both quantity and quality. Never before have so many historical mysteries been published, by so many gifted writers, and covering such a wide range of times and places.” The field’s past and promise are examined here.

• The list of celebrity panelists for NoirCon 2010, scheduled to take place in Philadelphia from November 4 to 7, is coming together nicely.

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Gary Phillips ponders the iconic image of Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara in an essay for the Web site Four Story.

• As my own small tribute to British actress Lynn Redgrave, who died on Sunday at age 67, I am embedding at right a video of the Australian band, The Seekers, performing “Georgy Girl.” That was the title song for the 1966 film of the same name, which starred Redgrave and made her something of a worldwide sensation.

• New today in bookstores: Innocent, Scott Turow’s long-awaited sequel to his 1987 bestseller, Presumed Innocent.

• Good news: After summarily disappearing from the Web, following the announcement that it would finally close up shop after three years, the e-zine Pulp Pusher has suddenly been resurrected--at least as an archive site. Let’s hope it stays up.

Los Angeles in all its noirish glory!

Is Dick Cheney to blame for the disastrous Gulf of Mexico oil spill?

From TV Squad: “According to recent tracking by the Nielsen rating service, the amount of television watching per [American] viewer has increased from 4.86 hours per day in 2007 to 5.13 hours. Per household, the total amount of time viewers stare at the flat-screen is a whopping eight hours.” This means some other pour sap in the United States really has his or her nose planted to the small screen, in order to make up for the fact that--at the most--I watch an hour or two of television every day. And I often consider that excessive!

• Leslie Buck, inventor of the much-imitated Anthora cardboard coffee cup, died earlier this week at his home on New York’s Long Island.

• Interviews worth reading: J. Sydney Jones talks with Canadian mystery author John McFetridge (Let It Ride); Lesa Holstine sits down with lawyer, journalist, and TV producer Michael Harvey (The Third Rail); Craig Sisterson chats up Irish novelist Rob Kitchin (The Rule Book); and David Cranmer fires seven questions at short-story writer Paul D. Brazill.

Forty years after the tragic shootings at Ohio’s Kent State.

• And last week, when I was putting together my list of crime fiction worth reading this summer, I missed mentioning two titles: Peeler, a cop novel set in 1920s Ireland, written by Kevin McCarthy and supposedly due out later this month; and On the Nickel, John Shannon’s 12th book featuring aerospace worker-turned-detective Jack Liffey, scheduled for release on July 1.

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