Monday, January 24, 2011

Grab Bag

The San Francisco Chronicle offers a bit more information about the “long-lost Dashiell Hammett story” The Strand Magazine plans to feature in its next edition (due out on February 28). And The Rap Sheet even won a brief but prominent mention in that Chron article.

I reported last week on the title of Jeffery Deaver’s forthcoming James Bond adventure. Now Double O Section offers the U.S. cover art for that novel. The far less in-your-face British cover is here.

• The Venetian Vase has a good piece about Jacques Futrelle, the American-born creator of Professor S.F.X. Van Dusen, the literary sleuth also known as “The Thinking Machine.” Unfortunately, Futrelle went down with the Titanic in 1912.

Anne Hathaway to star as the next Catwoman? Purrrr ....

• Over the weekend, Ed Gorman reposted a short, complimentary piece about novelist Erle Stanley Gardner, the creator of television’s best-known defense attorney, which had run originally in 2006. Even more interesting, though, was a comment left on that post by reader Matt Paust, who wrote:
A friend was reporting for The Princetonian when [physicist Albert] Einstein died. The great man had an office at Princeton, and my friend, who was one of the first to get the word, dashed up to the office, blocked the door with a chair and started looking frantically for something to give him a unique story. He found it in one of the bookcases. Reaching behind some tomes on physics, Bill’s hand grasped a couple of paperbacks. He pulled them out. Perry Mason. Ah, yes.
• To honor the 50th installment of Mike Ripley’s “Getting Away with Murder” column for Shots, editor Mike Stotter compiled a list of tributes to the author and his work. Particularly fun is novelist Reginald Hill’s extended comment. An entertaining slide show of Ripley’s literary wanderings can be watched here.

• This week’s new short story in Beat to a Pulp is “ A Rip Through Time: Battles, Broadswords, and Bad Girls,” by Charles A. Gramlich.

• The promotional poster for this 1977 film is reportedly much better than the picture itself. Which I guess I’ll never learn on my own, because who really wants to rush out and find a “nazisploitation flick” that’s described this way: “[L]et’s just say that the term softcore is too kind. In reality, it’s droopcore, or better yet, shrinkcore ...”

I’m going to miss MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann. His was a voice of reason and thoughtfulness in an increasingly vicious, so often delusional, and deliberately deceptive U.S. political environment.

• The Philadelphia Daily News presents a video tribute to author David Goodis made in association with the memorial tour of Philly conducted earlier this month.

R.I.P., Jack LaLanne. I remember as a boy watching his long-running TV show (presumably with my father, though that memory hasn’t stuck so well) and wondering how I could ever be as fit as he had evidently become. Attention to his health certainly paid off for LaLane: he was 96 years old when he died yesterday at his home in California. More here.

• I’ve never seen this movie either, so I’d agree it’s “overlooked.”

• Speaking of overlooked things, I’m not sure I have ever heard of the 1967-1968 TV espionage series Man in a Suitcase, much less watched it. But it looks like I’ll have my chance to make up for that hole in my education. Bish’s Beat reports that the first four-disc set of Man in a Suitcase episodes (only 30 were made) will go on sale tomorrow. Spy Vibe has a clip from the series here.

This show, though, I have enjoyed in the past.

• Milton T. Burton has a difficult time casting the leading role of Sheriff Bo Handel in an imagined cinematic adaptation of his recent crime novel, Nights of the Red Moon.

• I’ve only read one of the four Paul Pine detective novels written by John Evans (aka Harold Browne). But this write-up about Halo in Brass (1949) definitely makes me want to track down the other three.

• Republicans should have thought twice before tapping House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin--the architect of a very radical budget-cutting “roadmap”--to deliver the GOP’s response to President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night.

• The British Crime Writers’ Association has chosen Peter James (Dead Like You) to be its new Chair, beginning in April. More info here.

• In 1985, 21 years after the TV detective series 77 Sunset Strip was canceled, several of its principal cast members got together for a reunion on the short-lived syndicated afternoon talk show America. At least for now, the video of that segment can be seen on YouTube.

Crimespree’s Ruth Jordan reviews the first-season DVD release of Police Woman, starring Angie Dickinson and Earl Holliman.

• If one of us did this, we’d be prosecuted.

• South African crime novelist Roger Smith, whose novel Wake Up Dead is just out in paperback in the States, is the latest self-interviewee in Nigel Bird’s Sea Minor blog. Catch Smith’s Q&A here.

• I missed mentioning this before, so let me make up for it: Steve Weddle provides the most recent podcast story at Click here to listen to “Walkaways.”

• From a Web site called Criminal Justice Degrees Guide comes an inventory worth shaking one’s head at, covering the “15 Most Bizarre Laws That Are Still on the Books.”

• Max Allan Collins answers five questions for Noirboiled Notes.

John Dickson Carr has been Kindle-ized.

• And Loren D. Estleman (The Left-Handed Dollar) shares his “rules for the road” advice to aspiring your authors: “Learn another skill in case the writing doesn’t work out. I got this from my college journalism professor. I took him to mean I should get a job with a newspaper so I’d always have it for a backup.” More here.

1 comment:

Winifred said...

I absolutely loved Man in a Suitcase with Richard Bradford as the disgraced and cynical CIA almost anti hero chappie exiled to England. He was a really good actor shame we never saw much of him again here.

In glorious black & white if I remember correctly. Never seen it since so don't know how it stands the test of time.