- Exhibit A Books, the crime fiction imprint of Angry Robot Books, has closed up shop. I was looking forward to reading Patti Abbott's, Matthew Funk's, Nik Korpon's, and Rob Hart's books and hope that I'll be able to do so soon. Here's hoping that these authors, and the others, will have their rights released in a timely matter.
- We've had a lively discussion about this over on Facebook. Is Clint Eastwood an overrated director?
- Dynamite Announces 'Ex Con' Series. Look for it in September:
"Ex-Con #1 begins in 1985 with L.A. con artist Cody Pomeray, who had a gift for looking inside a mark’s soul with just a glance. But one fateful night, he targeted the wrong man — and was sentenced to the most savage prison in California. Pomeray would have been beaten to death on his first day if not for the intervention of Barnaby Creed, the most powerful crime lord in the Southland. Now it is 1989 and Pomeray’s out on parole, robbed of his special ability and tasked with doing Creed “a little favor.” He has no idea he’s just stepped into a long con, and this time, *he’s* the mark!"
- An Ex-Con Reviews Orange Is The New Black: ""The one thing that drives me nuts about this show is all the snappy banter. I understand that they have to make the show interesting, but if a guard came in and saw that you had smeared food on the wall, they would have thrown a bucket and scrubber in and not fed you again until you cleaned that shit up. They certainly wouldn't have allowed you to talk about the food on the wall, or wait for you to give this quirky explanation. This is like a scene from Blossom or something, where the guard is playing the exasperated Dad character. It's like, "Oh, Piper! What wacky antics have you gotten into now?""
- "In 1973 a ragtag group of Texans scrounged up $60,000 and created a film so violent and visionary that it shocked the world. But if you thought The Texas Chainsaw Massacre was strange, then you haven’t heard the story of how it got made."
- 19 Rare Recordings of Famous Recordings
- The Palomino: An Oral History: ""Back then there was an element of danger in the bar. There were people drinking and people in the parking lot. There was whiskey flowing. It wasn’t really a super-drug-era place—maybe weed. A lot of honky-tonkers would take uppers so they could drink more. I remember seeing Johnny Paycheck standing at the bar once, and Waylon Jennings. It was just a very impressive, kind of frightening place to be young and go into. When you’re 21, 22, 23, your ‘hanging out at the bar’ chops aren’t up yet. You’re not a man-man, where you go in, stand at the bar, put your money down, and get your drink.""
- Manchette: Into the Much by James Sallis: "
Though dredged from the same dark sense of purloined promise as Chandler’s, Manchette’s profoundly leftist, distinctly European stance may be something of a problem for American readers. Like many of his generation, Manchette was influenced by the Situationist Guy Debord, whose theories, elaborated in The Society of the Spectacle, were everywhere during France’s 1968 insurrections. Situationists held that capitalism’s overweening successes came only at the expense of increased alienation, social dysfunction, and a general degradation of daily life; that the acquisition, exchange, and consumption of commodities had forcefully supplanted direct experience, creating a kind of life by proxy; and that liberation might be found in fashioning moments that reawakened authentic desires, a sense of adventure, a ransom from dailiness.
Again and again one finds similar ideas in Manchette, here as a loose scaffolding holding story parts together, there like bones poking through broken skin. Manchette’s stories clip along at breakneck speed, breath be damned, skimming over polarized societies and forfeited lives, momentum never flagging. And in that disjunction, lightness of surface supporting the heaviness beneath, Manchette found his voice.