Friday, January 12, 2007

Hard Case Crime Update

If you visit our Web site,, you'll see we've put up our first new title of the year. It's SLIDE, the sequel to our much-loved 2006 novel BUST, by Ken Bruen and Jason Starr. The cover's another swell piece of work by R. B. Farrell, showing lovely Angela Petrakos and an unfortunate soul chained to a chair. You can read the first chapter of the book on our site (just click on the title "SLIDE" in our list of books and then on "Read a Sample Chapter"); the book itself will be out in October. (We'll be holding a drawing to give out some free advance copies soon than that -- but they haven't been printed yet...)

Meanwhile, in just 2-3 weeks you'll be able to get your hands on Lawrence Block's LUCKY AT CARDS, a classic story of a card cheat who falls for the wrong woman. The book was written back in 1964, but it's never been published under Block's real name, or under this title -- or in any form at all for four decades. That means that even if you're as passionate a Block fan as I am (and I know some of you are), the odds are you've never read this book. If you liked GRIFTER'S GAME, if you liked THE GIRL WITH THE LONG GREEN HEART, you simply have to read LUCKY AT CARDS. And if you've never read Block, well, this is a great place to start. It's a really fantastic book, and we're proud to give people their first look at it in ages. Ask your local bookseller to order it!

Some news about future books:

* At the end of this year we'll be bringing you DEADLY BELOVED by Max Allan Collins, the first-ever novel about his comic book detective "Ms. Tree" (featuring a cover painted by "Ms. Tree" co-creator Terry Beatty). "Ms. Tree" is the longest-running crime comic in the history of comics, and it's a treat to bring her to a new medium.

* People loved John Lange's GRAVE DESCEND so much in 2006 that we've decided (together with Mr. Lange) to bring back another of his long-lost thrillers. The next one will be ZERO COOL, the story of an American radiologist who goes to Spain for a relaxing vacation and finds himself caught up in a deadly struggle among some extremely colorful (and homicidal) criminal factions. It's a pulse-pounding adventure in the best John Lange mode, and I think you'll get a real kick out of it.

* Finally, I'm very excited to announce that we'll be adding a book by Robert Bloch to our list -- and not just any book, a very special book. Bloch became famous, of course, as the author of PSYCHO, the novel that introduced Norman Bates to the world and made a generation afraid to take a shower. But back in the 1950s, when he was starting out, Bloch also wrote a number of crime novels, mostly for the "ACE Doubles" line of books. These were volumes that bound two books together, back to back: You'd read one book first, right-side-up, and then you'd flip the book upside down and have a whole other story to read. Double the fun! Well, two of Bloch's best crime novels -- SHOOTING STAR and SPIDERWEB -- have been out of print since their first appearance, as halves of two different ACE Doubles, back in the '50s. And we're going to be bringing them halves of the first-ever Hard Case Crime Double. That's right -- two painted covers, two complete novels, bound back to back in one volume, all for the low, low price of...well, the same price we always charge, $6.99. Can't wait to typeset that sucker (I love proofreading upside down).

We'll have more news soon -- including an exciting announcement about a book we aren't publishing but that every Hard Case Crime fan will want to read: a new novel by Max Phillips, co-founder of Hard Case Crime and author of our Shamus Award-winning FADE TO BLONDE. In their advance review of this new book (which will be out from HarperCollins in March), Kirkus wrote, "CASINO ROYALE? Why bother with recycled 007 when [Phillips] serves up the '60s sexy super-spy stuff with even more nifty retro brio? [It's] pure pop art."

The title of this brilliant, brilliant book? EYE OF THE ARCHANGEL, by "Forrest DeVoe Jr." You'll be hearing a lot about this one -- and not only from us...


Anonymous said...

I like Hard Case Crime - and Ken Bruen - a lot but I didn't like BUST at all and won't be reading the sequel.

The Block is another story. Does it say what the original title and pseudonym were?

Unknown said...

No info on the Block title. Enquiring minds want to know.

Anonymous said...

THE STAR STALKER would be another obvious choice for Bloch, for that matter.

Anonymous said...

1) The Block title was originally published as THE SEX SHUFFLE by "Sheldon Lord." As Larry points out, the title was a bit misleading, because the book doesn't contain all that much sex. (It does, however, contain lots of shuffling.)

2) THE STAR STALKER is an outstanding novel -- but at least as I remember it, it would be stretching a point to call it a crime novel. It's really a novel of Hollywood that happens to contain some crimes. (It was also already reprinted as part of an omnibus in 1989.)

Charles Ardai
Editor, Hard Case Crime

Unknown said...

Thanks for the info, Charles. I'm looking forward to all the titles, naturally.

Anonymous said...

After that preposterous rip-off called "The Colorado Kid," I wouldn't buy a Hard Case Crime book if Dashiell Hammett rose from the dead to write one.

Unknown said...

To each his (or her) own.