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Hard Case Crime, Part 4

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Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Old 08-29-11, 10:18 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

> I'd ask for your impression on the current state of crime
> storytelling in the comic world

Crime has always been a bit of a red-headed stepchild in the comic world. It's not superheroes, it's not zombies, it's not horror, it's not broadsword-wielding barbarians or epic fantasy -- it's not even spies. It's just ordinary people doing awful things to one another. Publishers keep trying it, from time to time, and it keeps doing ho-hum business and getting cancelled. Sure, there's Dick Tracy, and for years own Max Allan Collins did Ms. Tree, but their longevity is the exception that proves the rule. It's not that crime stories can't work in the graphic medium, it's that readers of that medium don't much care if they do. It's not what they really enjoy.

Now, a series like Ed Brubaker's CRIMINAL can get a batch of attention -- and deserve it -- as can an adaptation like Darwyn Cooke's take on the Richard Stark books, or a standalone like ROAD TO PERDITION or A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE. But sales rarely match critical acclaim and the publishers rarely embrace the genre wholeheartedly as a result.

So -- I'm a pessimist. Despite being a comic reader from childhood and (obviously) a huge fan of crime fiction. There are exceptions, but overall I think crime comics are like noir musicals or pork desserts -- rare and rarely a success (though delicious on those rare occasions).
Old 08-29-11, 05:43 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Mmmmmmmmm.....pork dessert.

Last edited by djmont; 08-30-11 at 06:49 AM.
Old 08-31-11, 07:08 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

FYI - If you pre-order the announced HCC paperbacks from Amazon, you get one free with their 4 for 3 thing. In other words, pre-order Blood on the Mink, The Consummata, Quarry's Ex, and Choke Hold for $29.95 instead of $39.80. Obviously doesn't include the hardcover pre-orders. Pretty good deal considering they're slightly more expensive now.
Old 09-03-11, 03:19 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Originally Posted by wmermine
FYI - If you pre-order the announced HCC paperbacks from Amazon, you get one free with their 4 for 3 thing. In other words, pre-order Blood on the Mink, The Consummata, Quarry's Ex, and Choke Hold for $29.95 instead of $39.80. Obviously doesn't include the hardcover pre-orders. Pretty good deal considering they're slightly more expensive now.
Done. Thanks for the heads up.
Old 09-19-11, 06:31 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/20...l-be-released/

Rediscovered Novel by ‘Mildred Pierce’ Author Will Be Released
By DAVE ITZKOFF

The news was mixed for “Mildred Pierce” at Sunday’s Primetime Emmy Awards, where that HBO mini-series won awards for Kate Winslet and the supporting actor Guy Pearce, but lost the overall category to the PBS presentation of “Downton Abbey.”

Fans of the novel on which the series is based and of its author, James M. Cain, can take solace in a new development: a recently unearthed and previously unpublished manuscript by Cain, whose novels also include “The Postman Always Rings Twice” and “Double Indemnity,” will be released next year by Hard Case Crime, the imprint said on Monday.

Charles Ardai, the founder and editor of Hard Case Crime, said in a telephone interview that he had been alerted to the existence of the work, “The Cocktail Waitress,” by the mystery writer Max Allan Collins. Mr. Ardai said he found further references to “The Cocktail Waitress” in the writing of Cain, who died in 1977, and in a biography by Roy Hoopes. But he was unable to obtain the manuscript for nearly five years until it turned up in a set of papers that were inherited by Mr. Ardai’s agent from another literary representative who worked with bygone Hollywood writers.

Mr. Ardai said that when he finally received a copy of Cain’s manuscript for “The Cocktail Waitress,” “it was this wonderful moment like out of a Spielberg movie, where you open the chest and the light comes up from inside, and you don’t ask the question, ‘Where is the light coming from?’ ”

The novel, which Cain was working on at the end of his life, was described by Mr. Ardai as a hybrid of themes from “Mildred Pierce” and “The Postman Always Rings Twice.” It chronicles a young widow named Joan Medford, whose husband has died under suspicious circumstances and who is left to rear their child. She takes a job in a cocktail lounge where she falls into a love triangle with a younger, handsome man and an older, wealthier suitor and, as Mr. Ardai put it, “You know that older rich guy is not going to come to a happy end.”

Hard Case Crime, which has released unpublished works by writers like Donald Westlake and Lester Dent, as well as new works of pulp fiction by authors like Stephen King, plans to release “The Cocktail Waitress” next fall.

Among the tasks remaining for Mr. Ardai is to reconcile the different versions of the novel’s ending that Cain left behind, and to decipher some of Cain’s more cryptic handwritten margin notes.

“He wasn’t a doctor,” Mr. Ardai said of Cain, “but he wrote like one. With a magnifying glass, I can figure it out.”
Fall 2012 can't come fast enough. Bravo, Charles!
Old 09-19-11, 06:55 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

No doubt.

Even if I don't pick up others that will be one to grab.
Old 09-20-11, 10:06 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Just got back from my local Barnes & Noble with my hardcover of GETTING OFF.... I can't wait to start reading it!...

Hey, Mr. Block, great picture of you on the back cover... You look like you're going to kick somebodies ass!... ha-ha-ha-ha...
Old 09-20-11, 10:49 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Incredible James M. Cain news! Can't wait!
Old 09-20-11, 05:36 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Got both the new books in today. They both look great and I can't wait to read them! I really like the size and feel of the new paperbacks. I think the design will actually make them slightly easier to read. I was expecting the tall, skinny version that are like reading a very long pamphlet. This is tall but not too skinny.

As an aside, Mr. Ardai, I took your advice from the acknowledgments in Fifty to One and read If on a winter's night a traveler. I'd never heard of it before and I just absolutely loved it! (Fifty to One was great, as well!)
Old 09-20-11, 10:51 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Hi, y'all. This being publication day of Getting Off, I figured a visit was in order. Actually I dropped in any number of times, having bookmarked the site when I joined, but I always returned to the same page with my last post at the bottom of it, and I thought things had gone curiously inactive, because there were no posts after mine. Sheesh, I thought, was it something I said? Tonight I thought to refresh the pages, and still got no joy, and then I clicked on the next-page arrow, and, mirabile dictu, there everybody was.

CVB, thanks. A French photographer took the pic. Most of the best shots of me have been by French photogs. They set up in a minute and a half, no exactly what they want to shoot, click away for another minute and a half, and wind up with much better results than the clowns who take up two hours of your time. So if I look mean and rugged and pissed off, it's not because the guy annoyed me. He was done and out of there before I could get the least bit irritated.

Re crime in comic books, I well remember the true-crime comics with titles like Crime Does Not Pay. Loads of great gangland lore, they were the best thing about going to the barbershop. All banished from the universe, of course, when the Comics Code Fred Wertham crap happened, along with Tales From The Crypt et al.

Of course they probably weren't as great as I remember them...
Old 09-21-11, 09:40 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Discussions tend to be slow when there's no news or new books to discuss, and even when a new book comes out everyone reads at a different rate so we can't really have a, "Oh my God, can you believe what happened in Chatper 7?" conversation like we would with a TV show or movie. This thread is where I get news for Hard Case Crime, but I find Goodreads is better for discussions since you can comment on what your friends are reading, or go back and see what they thought of the book you're currently on.
Old 09-21-11, 01:24 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Mr. Block, my copy of GETTING OFF is on its way from Amazon, and I've cleared my nightstand in preparation for its arrival.
Old 09-22-11, 08:23 AM
  #263  
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Hi Mr. Block,

I was able to read the first 7 chapters of GETTING OFF last night.

I freaking love it! Especially chapter 4!.. Wow!.. I will never look at elastic bands the same way again!... LOL.

I hope GETTING OFF gets turned into a movie.

I would love to see Maggie Gyllenhaal portray "Kit".

My reason for picking her, is because I think she is extremely talented and gutsy.

If you've seen her in the movie called SECRETARY, then you know what I'm talking about.

That was an extreme role, and she did a truly incredible job with her character "Lee".

I think Ms. Gyllenhaal has the emotional depth and guts to make "Kit" a three-dimensional character.

Anyway, I can't wait to read more!

Truly outstanding work Mr. Block!

P.S. - I'm in a hurry, so sorry for any spelling errors...
Old 09-23-11, 09:35 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

News from Charles Ardai...

We're back! After more than a year, Hard Case Crime has new books in stores. GETTING OFF by Lawrence Block is the story of a beautiful young woman who sets out to murder every man she's ever slept with, while QUARRY'S EX by Max Allan Collins is the latest installment in his popular series about the hit man known as Quarry. In two weeks, two more new titles will arrive in stores: THE CONSUMMATA, begun in the 1960s by the legendary Mickey Spillane and completed after his death (at Mickey's request) by Max Allan Collins, and CHOKE HOLD by Christa Faust, the second story about Angel Dare, who first appeared in the Edgar Award-nominated MONEY SHOT.

You can find out more about each of these books on our Web site, www.HardCaseCrime.com. While you're there, you can also get a taste of our first two 2012 titles: THE COMEDY IS FINISHED by Donald E. Westlake and BLOOD ON THE MINK by Robert Silverberg. (The Westlake has never been published before; the Silverberg hasn't been published in any form for 50 years!) You can order any of these books online or -- better yet -- by requesting them at your favorite local bookstore. Whichever way you choose, we very much hope you will get yourself copies of these books. Heck, get extras for your friends -- they make great gifts for the crime fiction fans in your life.

Later in 2012, we'll be bringing you Edgar Award finalist Joseph Koenig's first new book in 20 years, FALSE NEGATIVE, a tale of a true-crime writer investigating the death of beauty pageant contestants in 1950s Atlantic City; and a very unusual first novel called THE TWENTY-YEAR DEATH by Ariel S. Winter. THE TWENTY-YEAR DEATH is three times the length of our usual books, and for an important reason: the story is told in the form of three separate pulp crime novels, each written in the style of a different famous mystery writer! These two books aren't up on our Web site yet, but we'll be unveiling the cover of FALSE NEGATIVE (by the inimitable Glen Orbik) around October 7 -- so mark your calendar...

And what's coming after those two? We've got something very, very special to announce. After hunting for more than 9 years, we have located and secured the rights to the final, never-before-published novel by noir master James M. Cain, author of MILDRED PIERCE, DOUBLE INDEMNITY, and THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE. The new book is called THE COCKTAIL WAITRESS, and it may be the single most important discovery we've ever made. It's the story of a beautiful young widow whose first husband died under suspicious circumstances and who finds herself pursued by two new men, each of whom has something she wants. But she can't have both of them...or can she? It's steamy, gritty, suspenseful, and altogther worthy of the legacy of this great writer. We can't wait to show it to you.

Alas, we do have to wait for that one. But happily you've got plenty of good books to read in the meantime. This is a good time to be a Hard Case Crime fan, for the first time in quite a while, and I want to thank you sincerely for keeping the flame burning all these months while we were away. If you get a chance, please tell a friend about our books. If you read our new titles and like them, please post a review somewhere online to let people know. The best thing you can do to ensure that Hard Case Crime books keep coming is not just to buy them yourself (though we're very grateful for your doing that) but to tell people about them and help us spread the word.

Many thanks for that help, and for all your passion for what we do -- it's what keeps us doing it.

Best,
Charles
---------
Charles Ardai
Editor, Hard Case Crime
Old 09-23-11, 01:14 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Mr. Ardai & Mr. Block: Looks like the HCC re-launch party at The Mysterious Bookshop this week was a blast!

http://www.slideroll.com/slideshows/...-case-crime-2/
Old 09-23-11, 03:34 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Hey Funk Daddy J...
Has your copy of GETTING OFF arrived yet?... I left off on chapter 7, and I hope, I get a chance to start reading it again tonight. It's REALLY fun, and KINKY!

Hey Mr. Block...
FYI: GETTING OFF is the first HARDcover I've purchased in over 25 years... I have a few NON-fiction HARDcovers - such as "Men's Adventure Magazines" - but they were GIFTS.
Old 09-23-11, 03:49 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Has anyone seen pics posted of the new books next to the old ones? HC and PB? Just curious to see them!
Old 09-23-11, 06:01 PM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Originally Posted by CVB
Hey Funk Daddy J...
Has your copy of GETTING OFF arrived yet?... I left off on chapter 7, and I hope, I get a chance to start reading it again tonight. It's REALLY fun, and KINKY!
Arrived today. Great-looking book! Nice to have a HCC book in hardcover!
Old 09-26-11, 07:43 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Originally Posted by xfilekr
Has anyone seen pics posted of the new books next to the old ones? HC and PB? Just curious to see them!
If I remember, I'll go down to the basement later and take a pic.
Old 09-26-11, 09:02 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4



I ordered some of the books recently that I was missing -- but it turns out I'm still missing one. (I just have the ARC.)
Old 09-26-11, 09:11 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Here's the close-up:

Old 09-26-11, 09:24 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

That's an impressive shelf, David...
Old 09-26-11, 10:07 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Thanks! Of course, all I did was buy them. Actually, most of them I didn't even buy. I pretty much just set them on the shelf. Still, I was able to put them in order -- that's got to count for something, right?

My dilemma is: does the Block hardback go with the HCC collection or with the Block collection? I guess I could solve the problem by getting another copy, but that seems profligate.
Old 09-26-11, 10:19 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

p.s. You just like it because you've got the biggest one.
Old 09-26-11, 10:55 AM
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Re: Hard Case Crime, Part 4

Originally Posted by djmont
Thanks! Of course, all I did was buy them. Actually, most of them I didn't even buy. I pretty much just set them on the shelf. Still, I was able to put them in order -- that's got to count for something, right?

My dilemma is: does the Block hardback go with the HCC collection or with the Block collection? I guess I could solve the problem by getting another copy, but that seems profligate.
Hmmm. I'll bet some Better Angel at HCC could send you a trade paperback, when it comes out in (I think) the spring. It could go on the Hard Case shelf, with the hardcover moving to the Block collection.

Still, it's a dilemma, and should not be resolved without Serious Thought.

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