Saturday, June 09, 2007

Will the Persecution Never End?

Possibly. This guy gets it.

Thanks to Jeff Meyerson for the link.

Update from Hard Case Crime


The heat of summer is almost upon us, and I'm pleased to say that the heat is on here at Hard Case Crime as well. If you visit our Web site -- -- you'll see we've added another title by John Lange to our site: ZERO COOL, whose cover features model and stage actress Meredith Napolitano enjoying some suitably criminous beach reading while an ominous shadow bears down on her. You can also read a sample chapter from ZERO COOL on our site. And while you're there, you can check out a page of photos we've put up from Book Expo America, the big publishing industry trade show that just took place in New York. Meredith was there, signing prints of her cover, along with fellow thespians Victoria Lee and James Huffman, all of them wearing vintage film noir outfits from the 1940s and 50s, supplied by the same collector who dressed the cast of "Miller's Crossing" and many another Hollywood production.

If you don't mind heat of a slightly raunchier sort, you might want to pick up a copy of the July issue of Playboy -- they've devoted half of their 'Books' page to Hard Case Crime and have some very nice things to say.

And if you're in the mood for some beach reading of your own, you can find George Axelrod's BLACKMAILER now in bookstores near you; and in just a few weeks you'll be able to get your hands on Richard Aleas' SONGS OF INNOCENCE, which I'm pleased to say is already starting to receive some rave reviews.

One last book to mention: Mickey Spillane's DEAD STREET. This one won't be published till November, but we have 10 advance copies that we're going to be giving away toward the end of this month. It's the first chance anyone's going to have to read the Mick's final crime novel. To enter our drawing, just e-mail your name and the address to which you'd like the book mailed if you're chosen to (only one entry per person, please). The winners will be selected at random at noon, New York time, on Saturday, June 23. Good luck! (While we're at it, congratulations are in order for David T. of Texas, Opal S. of Missouri, Alan R. of Rhode Island; Brian F. of California, Hoyt M. of Texas, Julie C. of Michigan, Gerry T. of Illinois, Shirley J. of Pennsylvania, Martha G. of Calfornia, and JoyceLynn K. of New York. They're the winners in last month's drawing for free copies of BLACKMAILER.)

Finally, if you're going to be in New York City on Wednesday, June 20th, I'd like to invite you to join Richard Aleas and the brilliant Megan Abbott for a reading and signing event at the Partners And Crime bookstore at 44 Greenwich Avenue (*not* Greenwich Street!) at 7PM. If you'd like a signed copy of SONGS OF INNOCENCE or of Megan's truly outstanding non-Hard Case novel QUEENPIN, this is your chance...

These Damn Punks Better Stay off My Lawn!

"Old People Suck" Sign Upsets Seniors In Orlando - News Story - WFTV Orlando: "ORLANDO, Fla. -- Three words on a cardboard sign outside a luxury downtown high rise have senior citizens outraged. One senior was so upset she took a picture outside The Vue at Lake Eola, on the corner of Rosalind and Robinson streets.

Some senior citizens were across the street in a small rally when they noticed the construction workers laughing at them. Then they looked by the fence and saw a sign they consider very offensive. The words were scrawled in bold white paint on cardboard.

Sandra Taylor, 64, stood across the street and could feel the sign shouting at her.

'The next thing we knew, we looked over and he had made a sign, holding it, said 'Old People Suck,'' Taylor said.

The construction worker was standing inside the site of one of Orlando's newest, most luxurious high rises in development, The Vue at Lake Eola. Taylor said not only did the worker hold up the sign, but she and other senior citizens were ridiculed."

Free Paris Hilton

Let freedom ring!

Thanks to Jeff "Attica Attica!" Meyerson for the link.

Gator Update (Reggie Edition)

Press-Telegram - Yes, Reggie's a male - and no, he's not hungry yet: "He's 7& 1/2 feet long and weighs 111 pounds.

He's in possession of all his toes - five on each front foot and four each on his back feet.

And, yes, he's a boy.

Reggie the alligator - Los Angeles' most famous captive next to Paris Hilton - was forced to endure the indignities of his first medical exam Thursday morning at the Los Angeles Zoo where he remains under quarantine.

And unlike Paris, he's cooperating.

Reggie has proved to be a good sport through it all."

Friday, June 08, 2007

OMG, What Has Happened to this Country?

There is no justice.


Yesterday I was interviewed by Tracee Evans of KTRH radio in Houston. Tracee's a reporter who reads. A lot. And she has a great blog about Houston writers. You can find it at the link below, and you might even want to listen to the podcast if you can stand the sound of my voice. Just look for the cover of Damn Near Dead.

NewsRadio 740 - KTRH: "You are never too old to enjoy a great yarn! That may well be the motto of an new genre of crime stories. Local author Bill Crider is featured in this very funny tome with the great title, Damn Near Dead: Old, Bold, Uncontrolled: An Anthology of Geezer Noir. Crider will be making a personal appearance this coming Monday Evening at 6 at the Houston Library's Robinson-Westchase branch at 3223 Wilcrest. Crider, who has published more than 50 novels, will be reading from his 14th Sheriff Dan Rhodes' mystery, Murder Among the OWLS and promises in our interview to sign any book his fans bring him..... Click on the speaker, we double dare ya...."

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Men of Tomorrow -- Gerard Jones

Men of Tomorrow is the story of how comic books came to be. But it's more than that. It's a social history, too, and there's a ton of information about the backgrounds of the creators of the first comics. It also presents the age old story of how the creators are exploited by the money-men.

Two of the men Jones writes about the most are Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster, the creators of Superman. The fact that they realized so little money from their character is one of the real shames of the comics industry, but there's plenty more to spread around.

The Golden Age of Comics was pretty much over when I started reading them around 1947, 60 years ago. But I loved them and read all that I could get my hands on. One of the great birthday gifts I ever received was from my aunt. It was a 35mm film can filled with dimes, and on the outside of the can my aunt had taped a note: "Strictly for Funny Books." That was more than 55 years ago, but the memory is clear as a bell. I kept the film can and note for many years.

Reading this book brought back that memory and a lot of others, and naturally I enjoyed it tremendously.
But I do have one complaint. Jones is a good writer in a lot of ways, but there are too many clunkers along the way. For example, this one: "The lead character was a crime fighter in a mask, fedora, and a three-piece suit called the Sprirt." Which of course leads me to ask, "But what were the mask and the fedora called?" Probably just an old English teacher's quibble, and it doesn't change the fact that Men of Tomorrow is a fascinating history. Check it out.

OMG, Will the Persecution Never End?

Damned activist judges.

So It's Come to This

Terrorism-trained deputies investigate dognapping - By Jennifer Squires - Sentinel staff writer - June 7, 2007: "BOULDER CREEK: Sheriff's deputies are investigating the theft of a golden retriever in the Santa Cruz Mountains as a possible terrorist incident after finding animal rights group propaganda where the dog was last seen."

Vicki Hendricks is Put to the Test

You can read about it here.

Allan Guthrie is put to a slightly different test here.

And if you want to find out what J. Kingston Pierce of the estimable Rap Sheet has been reading, click here.

News from the Future

It's about the unbloggable (though I did have a lapse on that count earlier today). You can blame Jeff Meyerson if you want to. He sent this link.

World's Biggest Beatles?

Hoffman: I saw them standing there ... | - Houston Chronicle: "By KEN HOFFMAN
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

I am proud that my city, in Texas, USA, is going to have an enormous sculpture of the Beatles sitting on its main highway. This is way cool.

Sculptor David Adickes will 'christen' his latest work (it's not an unveiling because the statues are too big to veil) Thursday night at his studio. His daughter Mary will smash a bottle of champagne across John Lennon's leg.

The 36-foot-tall sculpture of the Beatles will sit on his SculpturWorx Studio's front lawn on Summer Street near Interstate 10 and Taylor for three months, then move to property he owns on the south side of the freeway near the Shepherd exit.

Drivers will be able to see the Beatles for miles."

For You Hardboiled Fans. . .

. . . a good article on dogfighting. And remember: If you use this as the plot of your next novel, I get 10%. - NFL - Special Report: The House on Moonlight Road - Tuesday May 29, 2007 12:10PM: "The House on Moonlight Road

Though Michael Vick insists he knew nothing of alleged dogfighting on a Virginia property he owned, the case has cast a shadow over the star quarterback, alarmed the NFL and called attention to pro athletes' involvement in the grisly pastime."

Janes in Jail: Day 3 (Extremely Urgent Update!)

Paris Hilton -- Free Woman - "TMZ has learned that Paris Hilton has not only had her sentence cut short, she is already out of jail!

Unimpeachable sources tell TMZ the deal was sealed yesterday, and that Hilton made her exit early early this morning.

She was originally sentenced to 45 days in jail, but that was reduced to 23. She served a total of three days -- the normal stay for a violation of this kind.

The L.A. County Sheriff's Department will hold a news conference in an hour to discuss what went down. "

Update update:
Reporters hammered away about Paris' medical condition during a press conference in front of the jail, where she was released early this morning, but Whitmore said that due to confidentiality laws, he could not discuss even the slightest health-related details.

Paris will be under house confinement in her West Hollywood home for 40 days, where she has a 3000-4000 ft. radius of freedom. Her jail cell was 96 square feet. After the 40 days are up, Whitmore says she will have "fulfilled her debt to society."

Whitmore made it clear that Paris was not released early -- she was reassigned. She is technically still in custody.

Over at Bookgasm. . .

. . . there's a review of James Reasoner's fine new novel called Dust Devils. I couldn't have said it better, myself. So I won't. Just go over there and read the review.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Janes in Jail: Day 2

The Paris Hilton Prison Diaries.

Thanks to George Kelley for the tip.

A Hard Case Crime Movie

Who would Richard Aleas want to star in the upcoming movie version of Little Girl Lost? You can read his thoughts on the matter here.

I Report, You Decide - John Ramsey and Beth Holloway Twitty Are Dating - Local News | News Articles | National News | US News: "n a match seemingly made in tabloid heaven, the father of murdered child beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey and the mother of missing-in-Aruba teen Natalee Holloway are dating, FOX News has confirmed.

John Ramsey, 63, and Beth Holloway Twitty, 46, have been romantically involved since January 2007, though the two met at a fundraiser last year.

The couple has been spotted openly holding hands and kissing in Mountain Brook, Ala. — where Twitty lives — and at an art show at a nearby art museum. They've also been seen at various restaurants."

Robert E. Howard Days Coming Up

Brownwood Bulletin: "CROSS PLAINS — Fantasy literature experts and fans from across the country — and perhaps a few from across the oceans — have their reservations made for Cross Plains this weekend.

They will be arriving today as they begin their annual trek to Callahan County to celebrate the works of fantasy fiction author Robert E. Howard, whose blossoming career ended with his suicide in 1936.

“We don’t expect quite as many people here this year as we had last time, because that was the 100th anniversary of his birth,” Era Lee Hanke, president of Project Pride here, said Tuesday. “But we already have over 100 people registered for the events where we need a count, the ones with meals being served. We have reservations for 118 for Friday dinner, and we always have a lot of people show up during each day who didn’t register.”"

Janes in Jail: Day 2

Psychiatrist rushes to the prisoner's side!

D-Day the 6th of June

Osprey Media. - Belleville Intelligencer - Ontario, CA

A small piece of history sits on Gordon and Alice Cook's kitchen table.

It's a photocopy of part of Gordon's military records. Halfway down the page, are two half-typed, half-handwritten lines.

"Embarked at UK on 3 June 44. Disembarked at France on 6 June 44."

It's a very simple way of noting Cook's participation on D-Day, the world's largest-ever military invasion.

On this date in 1944, Operation Overlord, the Allies' invasion of Nazi-occupied France, was a success.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

The Deep Blue Alibi -- Paul Levine

This is the second Solomon & Lord novel. (I talked about the first one here.) The two mis-matched lawyers are still law partners, but Victoria Lord wants to go out on her own, much to Steve Solomon's dismay. She's not only a great partner, but he's in love with her. A man from her past shows up and proves to be even hunkier than ever. His father is accused of murder, and Victoria wants the case for her own.

At the same time, Steve is trying to clear his father's name. (As we learned in the first book, Herbert Solomon, a judge, was removed from the bench for a crime that Steve knows he didn't commit. Herbert doesn't want Steve to open that can of worms.

While Steve has issues with his father, Victoria has them with her mother, whom she blames for her father's suicide. The man Victoria's defending was her father's business partner.

Other complications include environmentalists intent on blocking construction of a floating hotel/casino, attempts on Steve's and Victoria's lives, and a side trip to a nudist colony.

Like the first book, this one's a fast, light read with plenty of twists. Levine has a way of making you (and some of the book'c characters) look at things in a whole different light by the time things come to a conclusion. Check it out.

Note Author's Name

Yep, that's Joe's kid. A chip off the old block. They call him "Scoop Dog" at home.

Former Center teacher accused of sex with student: "Former Center teacher accused of sex with student
Topless photos on cell phone lead to 23 charges, including sex assault of a child
The Daily Sentinel
Thursday, May 31, 2007

NACOGDOCHES — Former Center eighth-grade teacher Janet Susan Gallager Parker, 26, surrendered to Shelby County authorities Wednesday, after school officials discovered photographs of the woman, partially-nude and draped in a rebel flag, on a student's cell phone. Those photos eventually led to 23 warrants for her arrest on charges ranging from sexual performance and sexual assault of a child and possession of child pornography.

Parker had been suspected of having an inappropriate relationship with a student while she was employed at Center ISD teaching technology applications and graphic arts. However, no proof could be established at that time, according to a press release.

Parker resigned after an investigation was initiated in December 2006 after the school received information that Parker had been seen at a shopping mall, holding hands, according to an affidavit filed with a Shelby County Justice of the Peace. Parker denied the allegations when questioned by school and law enforcement officials, but resigned from her teaching post at the middle school, according to the affidavit."

Janes in Jail: Day 1

Even the Game Show Network is getting into the act.

And thanks to Jeff "Big Winner" Meyerson for the link.

The Times, They Are A-Changin'

The long goodbye - "Times have changed for Michael Jackson (No. 24 below) and vinyl records (No. 5) since he released Thriller 25 years ago. Today, we look back at 25 years of other changes in our lives. Some things are still around (No. 4), some not (No. 6). Disagree with our picks? Tell us at, and we'll post yours."

Here's the Plot for Your Next Novel (I Charge 10%)

Serial killer may have blogged clues | "THE serial killer behind the 1994 Claremont murders may be leaving clues to his identity in a series of comments on Australia's leading crime blog which show an unusually detailed knowledge of the case.

The latest comment was today.

The man, who calls himself 'Dr Phibes', started contributing detailed knowledge about the killings after journalist Gary Hughes started writing about the murders in his blog Gotcha in October last year."

Janes in Jail: Day 1

Thanks to Jeff "Warden" Meyerson for the link.

I think you should all read this and reflect on the lawyer's remarks. You've been so wrong about P.H.

Hardluck Stories

The Noir Blues issue of Hardluck Stories is now on-line. Looks like a fine issue, so check it out.

Monday, June 04, 2007

The Color Changing Card Trick

Flaming Youth

For those of you who can't get enough of celebrity follies, here's something to look at. Thanks to Jeff "Jim Bowie" Meyerson for the link.

Movie News - Disturbing Photos of Lohan Hit Internet - AOL News: "(June 4) -- Shocking photos that depict Lindsay Lohan and an unidentified female friend playing with knives while seemingly under the influence are causing a stir across the Internet. "

Thuglit #16 Now On-Line

And there's a BIG announcement, too. Check out the stories and the announcement, too. Click here.

The News You've All Been Waiting For

Paris goes to jail!

Thanks to John Duke for the link.

Happy Anniversay to Me & Judy

Today we have been married for 42 years. Seems like a long time to you whippersnappers, I'm sure, but it went by so fast that I can hardly believe it.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Hard Case Crime at Book Expo

Click the link for more photos.

About Hard Case Crime: " On June 2, 2007, Hard Case Crime welcomed booksellers from around the world to the annual Book Expo America tradeshow in New York City. Editor Charles Ardai was joined by stage and screen performers Meredith Napolitano (also the cover model for ZERO COOL), James Huffman, and Victoria Lee, all three of whom were dressed in vintage clothing from the pulp era. See below for some candid photos from the event..."

Man of the Century

I can't remember who recommended this one, but I'm glad somebody did. It's an odd little B&W movie about a guy named Johnny Twennies. Johnny appears to be living in the 1920s, even though he's living in the present day. He dresses in '20s clothes, shaves with a straight razor, uses '20s slang. He writes a column for a metropolitan daily, tapping it out on an old typewriter. His attitudes toward sex and dating are from a century ago.

None of this is explained. It just is. The rest of the screwball plot involves mobsters, Johnny's girlfriend, another girl who wants to be an opera singer, and things like that. Mostly, though, the movie is just strung-together bits, most of which I found very entertaining. The ending is right out of It's in the Bag.

Gibson Frazier plays Johnny. It's as if he's spent most of his life watching Warner Brothers movies about the '20s. Most of them with Bogart. His acting style is based on those movies, particularly Bogart's. Some of his lines are even stolen from Bogart movies, among others. Putting that style into a modern movie, where everyone else is from a different school, might seem odd, but it works just fine. If you're looking for something different, this is it. Check it out.

Will the Persecution Never End?

I don't think so.

Thanks to Jeff Meyerson for the link.