Thursday, July 15, 2010

Pickings from the ’Net

• Busted Flush Press will finally give author Daniel Judson the opportunity to complete his up-to-now-unfinished private-eye trilogy. As BFP’s blog explains, “Years ago, Bantam published the first two books in Daniel Judson’s ‘Gin Palace’ private eye trilogy, The Poisoned Prose and The Bone Orchard. Sadly, even after being nominated for one Barry Award, two Shamus Awards and winning one Shamus, the Declan ‘Mac’ MacManus series was dropped before Dan could wrap things up. At long last, 2011 will see the long-awaited return of reluctant Hamptons P.I. MacManus as BFP reprints the first two, and publishes the never-before-seen third novel, The Gin Palace.” I, for one, look forward to seeing this concluding entry.

• In Turner Classic Movies’ Movie Morelocks blog, Susan Doll writes about the late Stuart M. Kaminsky’s well-loved Toby Peters private-eye series from the perspective of a film historian. Her essay is here.

Another unreprinted Paul Cain story from Evan Lewis.

• American actress Vonetta McGee, who improved the scenery in many a blaxploitation flick during the 1970s, and appeared in the third private eye John Shaft film, Shaft in Africa (1973), has passed away at age 65.

• Good and bad CSI news, with the bad news first: The lovely and talented Melina Kanakaredes, who I first remember watching on the TV series Providence, has decided to leave CSI: NY after six years. Fortunately, she’s going to be replaced by the always captivating Sela Ward. Meanwhile, George Eads has signed on for another year with the original, Las Vegas-based CSI.

• Fans of Donald E. Westlake’s Parker, take note.

The New York Times catches up with Robert B. Parker’s widow, Joan.

• More hopeful news (here and here) from what those of us living in the Evergreen State fondly refer to as “the Other Washington.”

• Nicolas Pillai considers the covers of Ross Macdonald’s detective novels in his new blog, Squeezegut Alley. Look here and here.

• After the flurry of posts generated last week by Stacia Jones’ William Shatner Blogathon, to which I contributed a piece about the now long-forgotten historical detective series Barbary Coast, I didn’t figure to be reading anything more about Shatner for quite a while. But Kris Hambrick has since posted an appreciation of T.J. Hooker, the 1982-1985 ABC-TV drama in which the former starship captain played a veteran police sergeant, assisted by Heather Locklear and Adrian Zmed.

• I forgot to mention earlier that this week’s new short story in Beat to a Pulp is “King,” by Boston-area author Dave Zeltserman.

A special treat for Dick Tracy fans.

• From Shotsmag Confidential: “Mexican author Juan Hernandez Luna, who twice won the Dashiell Hammett crime-novel prize for his books has died of kidney failure. He won the Dashiell Hammett Prize in 1997 and 2007 for the detective novels Tabaco para el Puma (Tobacco for the Puma) and Cadaver de Ciudad (City Corpse).” More on Luna here.

• Because I’ve lately been winding my way through the DVD collection of Maigret, the delightful 1992-1993 British TV series starring Michael Gambon, my eye was naturally caught by Guy A. Savage’s review of The Man Who Wasn’t Maigret: A Portrait of Georges Simenon, written by Patrick Marnham (1993). “Marnham covers Simenon’s progress as a writer, his typical working schedule, his elusive literary aspirations, and the central themes of his books,” Savage writes. “In 1928 alone, Simenon wrote 44 novels, so it’s no wonder that Simenon is frequently compared to Balzac. But apart from covering the details--which make rewarding information, Marnham also includes the far more complicated area of Simenon’s sources of inspiration.” You’ll find the full review here.

• And a few interviews worth your time: Julia Buckley talks with the mysterious Canadian author Inger Ash Wolfe (The Taken); J. Sydney Jones fires some questions at Rap Sheet favorite Declan Burke (The Big O); Lesa Holstine chats up Robert Dugoni (Bodily Harm); and Mack Lundy files a three-part conversation with Gary M. Dobbs, author of A Policeman’s Lot, in Mack Captures Crime (Part I, Part II, and Part III).


RJR said...

I'm impressed that Maigret wrote 44 novels in one year. In 1984 I wrote 27. It ain't easy.


squeezegutalley said...

Very sad to hear about Vonetta McGee. I enjoyed her occasional performances as Carl Lumbly's wife in 'Cagney and Lacey' (Lumbly was her husband in real life).

Rural View said...

I hope Melina K. will soon be in another show. Will miss her in CSI:NY even though I enjoy Sela Ward too.

Thanks for the link to the piece about Joan Parker. Theirs was a very interesting relationship, unconventional but it worked for them. I'm glad she's adjusted so well; I admire her greatly.