Friday, February 1, 2008

More Large Pleasures from Small Publishers

Is this the best job in the world, or what? Not only do I get to read big books from large publishers owned by German corporations, but I also get to enjoy tasty offerings from houses with higher aspirations if smaller advertising budgets.

Hard Case Crime
is a perfect example, a literary version of Proust's madeline, one bite of which takes me back to the pulp novels I used to read for 35 cents a pop. But Charles Ardai does lots of new stuff, too -- like this terrific book by Christa Faust about a former porn star who is talked into making one last appearance and winds up running for her life.

Katharina Hacker's THE HAVE-NOTS has won lots of prizes, raves and sales in her native Germany, and now, thanks to the bold folk at Europa, promises to shake up American readers who don't see that many German thrillers as good as this.

Finally, James Sallis -- poet, biographer of Chester Himes, author of the Lew Griffin series -- has a new series going from Walker about a burned out Memphis cop named Turner who has opted out and taken a job as a country sheriff's deputy. Fine stuff, as are they all.

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