Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Bullet Points: May Day Mixer

• An announcement of who has won the 2013 Edgar Awards is expected tomorrow, May 2 (the complete list of nominees is here). In the run-up to that, critic Oline Cogdill has been posting profiles of this year’s two Grand Master Award recipients. Margaret Maron was the first. Now there’s a companion piece about Ken Follet.

• If you happen to be in London today, take note: “Crime expert Barry Forshaw will be chairing a fascinating panel event with crime authors Stuart Neville, Arne Dahl and Antti Tuomainen at Waterstones Piccadilly on 1 May 2013. It will include a discussion on The Blinded Man: The First Intercrime Thriller.” This event will begin at 6:30 p.m.

January Magazine’s Roberta Alexander revisits a couple of Nero Wolfe classics, Too Many Cooks (1938) and Champagne for One (1958).

• This should teach people to do more than run junk-mail copy through spell check. The advertising circular on the left comes from Doug’s Mazda Hyundai in Edmonds, Washington, though you might not be able to figure that out simply by reading the copy. Click on the image to blow it up. (A big hat tip to Amie-June Brumble.)

• John le Carré’s new novel, A Delicate Truth, is due out in the States next week from publisher Viking, but a short teaser film has already been released.

• By the way, plans are in the works to turn A Delicate Truth into a big-screen picture. It will apparently come from the same studio that’s already filming another le Carré work, 2008’s A Most Wanted Man.

• And the release of le Carré’s book leads UK academic and editor Steven Powell to ask, “should crime novels be more political”?

National Crime Writing Month begins today in Canada.

• The annual Malice Domestic conference will be held this coming weekend in Bethesda, Maryland. Stay tuned to this page for an announcement of which authors and books wind up taking home the 2013 Agatha Awards. You’ll find the list of contenders here.

• Real-life Detroit homicide detective Ira Todd is helping to shape the forthcoming AMC-TV cop drama Low Winter Sun, an American version of a 2006 British mini-series. The show will premiere on August 11. There’s more about Low Winter Sun here.

More cool old Ellery Queen comic books!

• Author James Ellroy is hoping that in this case, the second time’s a charm, as he peddles the idea of turning the 1997 movie L.A. Confidential (based on his own 1990 novel) into a television series. As the blog Flavorwire notes, “In 2000, a pre-24 Keifer Sutherland starred (as Jack Vincennes, the Kevin Spacey role) in a pilot for a potential series version of L.A. Confidential. The pilot wasn’t picked up, but it was included on the film’s DVD, where lookyloos could find out that it’s actually not that easy to replicate the magic of the movie.”

• Meanwhile, a public television broadcaster in Norway has commissioned a mini-series called Occupied, based on a concept from bestselling novelist Jo Nesbø. “[T]he story line,” reports Omnimystery News, “is set in the near future and is centered on the invasion of Norway by Russia to secure its oil fields after an international crisis results in a global oil shortage.”

• Congratulations are owed to my old friend Allan Lengel and the whole crew at Deadline Detroit. That Motor City news Web site turned one year old this last weekend.

Paranoid Republicans do love idiotic conspiracy theories.

• Mystery*File’s Michael Shonk has a fun post up in Criminal Element looking at secretaries in crime fiction, from Perry Mason’s Della Street to Joe Mannix’s Peggy Fair and Mike Hammer’s Velda Sterling.

Is this really “the most beautiful bookshop in the world”?

• The Web is already rife with lists, but blogger Patrick Balester has slowly been adding a fine new entry to the collection. Click here to read his rundown of “101 Things to Do Before You Die (for Mystery Writers).” Actually, there are only 74 suggestions thus far. Among my personal faves: “Attend Bouchercon”; “Visit San Francisco and stop at all the landmarks mentioned in the novels by Dashiell Hammett”; “Contact your local coroner and ask to witness an autopsy”; and “Visit the grave of Edgar Allan Poe, at night. Leave a rose.” I’ve done all of those, though I did drop by Poe’s sandstone memorial in Baltimore during the daylight hours, rather than in the dark.

• And here’s another list: Crime Fiction Lover proposes the “Top 20 Songs for Crime Fiction Lovers.” There are some good selections here, from The Eagles’ “Desperado” and The Rolling Stones’ “Gimme Shelter” to Bob Marley’s “I Shot the Sheriff” and of course Elvis Costello’s “Watching the Detectives.”

• Damn, another one! This one is not in the crime-fiction field, however: “The 10 Bestselling Science Fiction Books of All Time.” I’m pleased to say that I have read seven of the works listed, plus eight of the “honorable mentions.”

• This bit of news comes from a press release: “The grandson of legendary film director, screenwriter, and actor John Huston is to be honored at the inaugural Humphrey Bogart Film Festival set for May 2-5 in Key Largo [Florida]. Jack Huston, star of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, is to receive the film festival’s award recognizing the partnership between his grandfather and Bogart.”

• Also worth repeating: “William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, today announced the launch of Witness, a new digital-original mystery, suspense and thriller line--the first of its kind from a major U.S. publisher. Witness will debut in October 2013. Editors have already acquired more than 100 full-length books for Witness--with 10 titles publishing within the first month, and are actively seeking additional titles for the launch. Dan Mallory, executive editor at William Morrow is spearheading the publishing initiative.” Find out more here.

• Say good-bye to Murderati. After seven years in business, that group blog became an archive site only on Monday.

This looks like good entertainment.

• Finally, how can you not be curious to know what titles appear on Sopranos creator David Chase’s list of his six favorite books?


RJR said...

"Private Eyes," Hall & Oates.


Kris said...

Thanks for an excellent summary. I directed my readers to it in my weekly newsletter. Please let me know if you'd like a copy. Cheers,