Archive for April, 2012

A TV Series Review by Michael Shonk: SHOTGUN SLADE (1959-61).

REVIEWED BY MICHAEL SHONK SHOTGUN SLADE. Revue Studios/MCA TV. Syndicated, 1959-61, 78 episodes. Created by Frank Gruber. Executive Producer: Nat Holt. Cast: Scott Brady as “Shotgun” Slade.     “Shotgun” Slade (his first name was never mentioned) was the lone member of the Slade Detective Agency, with his office in Denver. He traveled all over the [...]

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Pierce’s Picks: “The Solitary House”

A weekly alert for followers of crime, mystery, and thriller fiction.

The Solitary House, by Lynn Shepherd (Delacorte Press):
Carrying on from her initial work of historical suspense, 2010’s Murder at Mansfield Park (yes, that’s a witty reworking of Jane Austen’s 1814 novel), British writer Shepherd this time presents a haunting literary homage to both Charles Dickens’ Bleak House and Wilkie Collins’ The Woman in White. The year is 1850. The place, London. Charles Maddox, recently expelled from the Metropolitan Police force for insubordination, has taken up a far less steady career as a private inquiry agent, with help from his great-uncle, a renowned “thief-taker” of the same name (who, by the way, was the detective hero of Murder at Mansfield Park). In The Solitary House, the former copper is hired by Edward Tulkinghorn, one of the city’s most intimidating attorneys, who wants him to put a quick end to a stream of menacing missives sent to financier Sir Julius Cremorne. Maddox, however, is also occupied with a second case, involving the grandchild of a man who long ago booted his pregnant daughter from his life. As Maddox struggles with these tasks--assignments made all the more daunting when he encounters difficulty in gaining access to Victorian power brokers, and when his efforts on Tulkinghorn’s behalf appear to leave corpses in their wake--he realizes that he can depend on his great-uncle’s help only so far, for the elder Maddox is slipping into age-associated mental illness. Shepherd’s representation of mid-19th-century London is fascinating and often frightening, and one needn’t be a Dickens scholar to appreciate The Solitary House (UK title: Tom-All-Alone’s).

Two other new mystery titles to keep an eye out for this week: The Lola Quartet, by Emily St. John Mandel (Unbridled Books), about a film-noir-obsessed young journalist who returns to his Florida hometown in search of a 10-year-old who may be his daughter by his high-school girlfriend; and The Stonecutter, by Swedish author Camilla Läckberg (Pegasus), in which Detective Patrik Hedström probes the tragic case of a small girl found in a fisherman’s net, whose death throws a sinister light on an isolated resort town.

GREAT FREDRIC BROWN NEWS

GREAT FREDRIC BROWN NEWS

FB1-new

www.haffnerpress.com/


Murder Draws a Crowd: The Collected Fredric Brown, Volume OneFredric BrownEdited by Stephen Haffner
ISBN-13 9781893887787
600+ pages$40.00

“. . . enough good people put Brown on their must-read lists and then become evangelists to keep his name alive on the same high shelf as Hammett, Thompson, Ross Macdonald and other crime icons. Somewhere up in literary heaven, I hope he’s looking down, sipping a beer, playing his flute and smiling.”—Dick Adler, Chicago Tribune.

While the editor of this series only recently came upon the above quote from 2008, these eyes read no truer words.

Work has been underway for nearly a year on assembling the first two volumes of a series provisionally titledLOADED: THE COLLECTED FREDRIC BROWN. Now is your chance to get in on the ground floor of what is hoped to be the definitive collection of Fredric Brown sans his science fiction works. Assembled in chronological order of publication, this set will contain all the short fiction (of all genres: mystery, horror, noir, western, detection, etc.) and all of Brown’s novels (again, excepting his sf works). You’ll be able to enjoy Fredric Brown at his longer lengths fromThe Fabulous Clipjoint and Night of the Jabberwock to The Lenient Beast andMrs. Murphy’s Underpants. Assisting with this effort have been Brown bibliographer Phil Stephensen-Payne and Brown biographer Jack Seabrook. This massive undertaking could not have been accomplished without their help.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

The Moon For A Nickel Detective Story Magazine Mar. 38

The Cheese on Stilts, Thrilling Detective Jan. 39
Blood of the Dragon, Variety Detective Feb. 39
There Are Bloodstains in the Alley, Detective Yarns Feb. 39
Murder at 10:15, Clues Detective Stories May 39
The Prehistoric Clue, Ten Detective Aces Jul. 40
Trouble in a Teacup, Detective Fiction Weekly Jul-13-1940
Murder Draws a Crowd, Detective Fiction Weekly Jul-27-1940
Footprints on the Ceiling, Ten Detective Aces Sep. 40
The Little Green Men, The Masked Detective Fall 1940
Town Wanted, Detective Fiction Weekly Sep-7-1940
Herbie Rides His Hunch, Detective Fiction Weekly Oct-19-1940
The Stranger from Trouble Valley, Western Short Stories Nov. 40
The Strange Sisters Strange, Detective Fiction Weekly Dec-28-1940
How Tagrid Got There, unpublished until 1986
Fugitive Imposter, Ten Detective Aces Jan. 41
The King Comes Home, Thrilling Detective Jan. 41
Big-Top Doom, Ten Detective Aces Mar 41
The Discontented Cows, G-Men Detective Mar. 41
Life and Fire, Detective Fiction Weekly Mar-22-1941
Big-League Larceny, Ten Detective Aces Apr. 41 {as by Jack Hobart}
Selling Death Short, Ten Detective Aces Apr. 41
Client Unknown, The Phantom Detective Apr. 41
Your Name in Gold, The Phantom Detective Jun. 41
Here Comes the Hearse, 10-Story Detective Jul. 41 {as by Allen Morse}
Six-Gun Song, 10-Story Detective Jul. 41
Star-Spangled Night, Coronet Jul. 41
Wheels Across the Night, G-Men Detective Jul. 41
Little Boy Lost, Detective Fiction Weekly Aug-2-1941
Bullet for Bullet, Western Short Stories Oct. 41
Listen to the Mocking Bird (NT) G-Men Detective Nov. 41

www.haffnerpress.com

FB2-new


Death in the Dark: The Collected Fredric Brown, Volume TwoFredric BrownEdited by Stephen Haffner
ISBN-13 9781893887800
600+ page Hardcover$40

“. . . enough good people put Brown on their must-read lists and then become evangelists to keep his name alive on the same high shelf as Hammett, Thompson, Ross Macdonald and other crime icons. Somewhere up in literary heaven, I hope he’s looking down, sipping a beer, playing his flute and smiling.”—Dick Adler, Chicago Tribune

While the editor of this series only recently came upon the aboe quote from 2008, these eyes read no truer words. Work has been underway for nearly a year on assembling the first two volumes of a series provisionally titled LOADED: THE COLLECTED FREDRIC BROWN. Now is your chance to get in on the ground floor of what is hoped to be the definitive collection of Fredric Brown sans his science fiction works. Assembled in chronological order of publication, this set will contain all the short fiction (of all genres: mystery, horror, noir, western, detection, etc.) and all of Brown’s novels (again, excepting his sf works). You’ll be able to enjoy Fredric Brown at his longer lengths from The Fabulous Clipjoint and Night of the Jabberwock to The Lenient Beast and Mrs. Murphy’s Underpants. Assisting with this effort have been Brown bibliographer Phil Stephensen-Payne and Brown biographer Jack Seabrook. This massive undertaking could not have been accomplished without their help.

TABLE OF CONTENTS REVIEWS EXCERPTS

Little Apple Hard to Peel, Detective Tales Feb. 42

Death in the Dark, Dime Mystery Mar. 42
The Incredible Bomber, G-Men Detective Mar. 42
Pardon My Ghoulish Laughter, Strange Detective Mysteries Mar. 42
Twice-Killed Corpse, Ten Detective Aces Mar. 42
A Cat Walks, Detective Story Magazine Apr. 42
Mad Dog!, Detective Book Magazine Spring 1942
Moon Over Murder, The Masked Detective Spring 1942
"Who Did I Murder?", Detective Short Stories Apr. 42
Murder in Furs, Thrilling Detective May 42
Suite for Flute and Tommy Gun, Detective Story Magazine Jun. 42
Three-Corpse Parlay, Popular Detective Jun. 42
A Date to Die, Strange Detective Mysteries Jul. 42
Red is the Hue of Hell, Strange Detective Mysteries Jul. 42 {as by Felix Graham}
Two Biers for Two, Clues Detective Stories Jul. 42
"You'll Die Before Dawn", Mystery Magazine Jul. 42
Get Out of Town, Thrilling Detective Sep. 42
A Little White Lye, Ten Detective Aces Sep. 42
The Men Who Went Nowhere, Dime Mystery Sep. 42
Nothing Sinister, Mystery Magazine Sep. 42
The Numberless Shadows, Detective Story Magazine Sep. 42
Satan's Search Warrant, 10-Story Detective Sep. 42
Where There's Smoke, Black Book Detective Sep. 42
Boner, Popular Detective Oct. 42
Legacy of Murder, Exciting Mystery Oct. 42
The Santa Claus Murders, Detective Story Magazine Oct. 42
Double Murder, Thrilling Detective Nov. 42 {as by John S. Endicott}
A Fine Night for Murder, Detective Tales Nov. 42
Heil, Werewolf!, Dime Mystery Nov. 42 {as by Felix Graham}
I'll See You at Midnight, Clues Detective Stories Nov. 42
The Monkey Angle, Thrilling Detective Nov. 42
Satan One-and-a-H

Zoe Is Not Amused

Zoe. Photo by Brandi
Zoe remains unimpressed by Ziggy's youthful exuberance and mad antics....