Friday, March 18, 2011

Bullet Points: My Birthday Edition

• Declan Burke’s new work, the playfully titled Down These Green Streets: Irish Crime Writing in the 21st Century (“a fantastically detailed book consisting of essays, interviews, and short fiction”) is due out next month. I’m definitely looking forward to seeing it. After all, Burke describes the collection as
something of a Who’s Who of contemporary Irish crime fiction, with contributions (in order of appearance) from John Connolly, Ruth Dudley Edwards, Kevin McCarthy, Cora Harrison, Adrian McKinty, Cormac Millar, Alan Glynn, Eoin McNamee, Jane Casey, Declan Hughes, Alex Barclay, Colin Bateman, Paul Charles, Niamh O’Connor, Gerard Brennan, Ingrid Black, John Banville, Stuart Neville, Gene Kerrigan, Gerry O’Carroll, Arlene Hunt, Andrew Nugent, Brian McGilloway, Neville Thompson, Tana French and Ken Bruen. It also features a foreword by Michael Connelly, an introduction by Professor Ian Ross of Trinity College, an appreciation of crime narratives in theatre and film by Sara Keating and Tara Brady, respectively, and an afterword by Fintan O’Toole.
Unfortunately for many of us, Down These Green Streets will be released in Ireland, and Burke says there are presently no plans for an American edition. However, you can order it from publisher Liberties Press at €19.99 per copy (or about U.S. $28). A worthy investment in broadening one’s crime-fiction-reading horizons, I’d say.

• Wow, I’d forgotten that next week, the beautiful city of Santa Fe, New Mexico, will be filled by people with murder on their minds. Left Coast Crime 2011 opens at the historic La Fonda Hotel on Thursday, March 24, and runs through the 27th. If attendees would like to participate in walking tours of Santa Fe, Janet Rudolph has some recommendations of where to look for such tour information.

• Meanwhile, “Bookbitch” Stacy Alesi offers a wrap-up of Sleuthfest, which took place earlier this month in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Spinetingler Magazine has the trailers for two new Jack Taylor films, based on Ken Bruen’s tales and set to air on Irish TV later this year.

• Part IX of “Black Lens,” the Ken Bruen and Russell Ackerman story currently being serialized in the Mulholland Books blog, is here.

• The latest edition of Crime Factory is kung-fu themed, with stories by Christa Faust, Duane Swierczynski, Chris La Tray, Frank Bill, and others.

• Pegasus Books is launching a new fiction imprint, Pegasus Crime, that will publish crime, espionage, and paranormal suspense stories. The first title scheduled to appear under that imprint will be The Preacher, by Swedish writer Camilla Läckberg.

• I’m fond of crime fiction/science fiction crossovers, so Marty McKee’s write-up about The Paradise Plot (1980), by Ed Naha, definitely caught my attention.

Is this really John le Carré’s “last American interview”?

Lawrence Block interviews himself on the subject of his long-ago life as a writer of pseudonymous soft-core porn novels, many of which are now being made available as e-books.

Old Friends Never Die, the fourth TV movie spin-off from the 1979-1984 U.S. series Hart to Hart, is finally available. More here.

• Speaking of Hart to Hart, the blog Classic Film and TV Café features a not-altogether-glowing review of that show’s premiere season, which is available in DVD format.

• And The Snoop Sisters--The Complete Series, a DVD set I never thought would be released, went on sale in the States this week.

The short library lives of e-books.

Jim Sallis talks with Craig McDonald (One True Sentence).

• The Republican-led U.S. House seems determined to waste members’ time and taxpayer money by ramming through legislation that pleases the most radical GOP base but has no chance in hell of making it into law, and does nothing to create jobs. The latest example: Yesterday’s “emergency” vote to cut off funding for National Public Radio, one of the last major U.S. media organizations that still focuses on real news, rather than consumer-oriented information, speculative “news analysis” segments, and partisan political claptrap. I think NPR--which I listen to each and every day--ought to receive more funding, not less. If that means the nation’s richest 1 percent will have to muddle through without further tax cuts, well then, so be it.

Salon’s Laura Miller worries that Kate Atkinson won’t be able to maintain the freshness of her Jackson Brodie series in the long run, but likes the author’s latest entry, Started Early, Took My Dog.

• Barbara Fister is a big fan of Lucifer’s Tears, the second Inspector Kari Vaara novel by American-born Finnish author James Thompson. Her interview with Thompson is here.

• And at the risk of inundating John “J.F.” Norris with requests for the forgotten and out-of-print works he so often writes about in his blog, Pretty Sinister Books, I want to mention that he’s now offering to mail readers his books if they can’t track them down in their local libraries. A most generous offer, indeed.


David said...

Happy Birthday, hope you had a good one! And congrats on the Kirkus gig and your million visitors, too.

Barbara said...

(formerly Rural View) Happy Birthday to you . . . Well, just be happy you can't hear me singing.

I'm sooo angry about the idea of cutting funding for NPR.

Ken Van Durand said...

In re: NPR.
Talk is cheap.

If that's what you believe and you use their left wing service, than make a big contribution and quit whining about it.

J. Kingston Pierce said...

Wow, anyone who calls National Public Radio "left wing" doesn't know where the center of American political opinion lies. Just because a media organization isn't baldy and obnoxiously "right wing" doesn't make it "left wing."