Robert B. Parker

(1932--2010) Well, the guy had balls, anyway. It's one thing to be compared to the Holy Trinity of Hammett, Chandler and Macdonald. It's quite another to presume to elbow your way in. Particularly for Chandler fans who saw Parker first step into Chandler's hallowed shoes: his completion of Chandler's unfinished last Philip Marlowe novel, Poodle … Continue reading Robert B. Parker

Telling Lies for Fun and Profit

Lawrence Block Writes (and Writes) About Writing   Some writers write. Some writers write about writing. But Lawrence Block does both. And he's damn good at both. No wonder I still hate him. Like many a starting writer, I tried to figure out how to write by reading books and amgazines about writing. Some were … Continue reading Telling Lies for Fun and Profit

Bill Pronzini

Pseudonyms include Jack Foxx, Alex Saxon, Brett Halliday, William Jeffrey, Romer Zane Grey, and Robert Hart Davis (1943 --) BILL PRONZINI is simply one of the genre's masters. Top of the Line. An Ace Performer. The Bomb. He seems to have taken a crack at just about everything in the mystery genre: noirish thrillers, historicals, locked-room … Continue reading Bill Pronzini

Death is Not the End (The Long, Long Goodbye)

Private Eyes Who Just Won't Stay Dead (Even If Their Creators Are) That whirring sound coming from the mystery section of the local cemetery these days? It might just be another dead author spinning in his grave... In the last few years, we've been subjected to an orgy of literary reincarnation (some call it "continuation … Continue reading Death is Not the End (The Long, Long Goodbye)

Raymond Chandler and the Case of the Lost Libretto

Or: Pour O Pour The Goblin Wine "She was the beat of my heart for thirty years. She was the music heard faintly around the edge of the sound. It was my great and now useless regret that I never wrote anything really worth her attention, no book I could dedicate to her." -- Raymond Chandler, … Continue reading Raymond Chandler and the Case of the Lost Libretto

John D. MacDonald

Pseudonyms included John Wade Farrel, Robert Henry, John Lane, Scott O'Hara, Peter Reed & Henry Reiser (1916-1986) "If any two people could ever really get inside each other's head, it would scare the pee out of both of them." -- Travis McGee in Dress Her in Indigo "(He was) the great entertainer of our age, … Continue reading John D. MacDonald

Mickey Spillane

Frank Morrison Spillane (1918-2006) "Anyone who doesn't recognize Spillane's importance is an idiot." -- Max Allan Collins Frank Morrison Spillane was a Brooklyn kid, born on March 9, 1918, the only child of Catherine Anne and John Joseph Spillane, an Irish-American bartender who nicknamed him "Mickey." He passed away July 17, 2006 at his home … Continue reading Mickey Spillane

How Sharper Than a Serpent’s Tooth…

Raymond Chandler on Other Writers As Stephen Blackmore has pointed out, Raymond Chandler was a bit of an asshole. Sure, he had his moments, but he was also vain, egotistical, insecure, jealous, catty, snobbish and of course, alcoholic. Just a browse through his personal correspondence reveals a snarkiness, particularly towards other mystery writers, that's surprisingly mean-spirited, … Continue reading How Sharper Than a Serpent’s Tooth…