Incident Report No. 73

The Incident Report covers the world of small press crime fiction for the week of April 14th. through April 20th.

The Mystery Tribune published a conversation between Isabella Maldonado, Tracy Clark, and Tori Eldridge, a conversation the wove from settings and location to culture and perspective. Maldonado is the author of the Veranda Cruz Mysteries: “Blood Echo”, “Phoenix Burning”, and “Death Blow”, all available on Midnight Ink. Clark‘s two-books-and-counting series set in Chicago with includes “Broken Places” and “Borrowed Time” on Kensington Books. Eldridge‘s debut novel, “The Ninja Daughter”, will be out in November on Agora Books.


Brian Thornton and Jim Thomsen got together at SleuthSayers and chatted about one of Thomsen’s favorite tropes: shoulder wounds. He writes:

Shoulder wounds are one of the more prolific and ridiculous clichés in crime fiction — and one of the most pervasive. (An Edgar Award-winning author, one I admire, just released a novel in which a DOG gets shot in the shoulder: “Something hot whizzed through the fur on my shoulder.” Is the siren song of the shoulder wound that irresistible?


Jason Beech, author of “City of Forts” (2018), also does a lot of work with interviews and reading around the dark underbelly of crime fiction. Most recently, he and Tess Makovesky chatted about Joe Lane’s “From Blue to Black.” All Due Respect published Makoveksy’s “Gravy Train” in 2018.

Now if you heard about Lane and his book “From Blue to Black”, no worries, Makovesky explained.

It isn’t your typical pulp noir, certainly, but I believe it fits well into the noir genre overall. I looked up the definition of noir online and the “Oxford English Dictionary” mentions cynicism, fatalism, and moral ambiguity. And “From Blue to Black” majors on at least two of those – the characters aren’t villains but they really aren’t ‘good guys’ either, and there’s a definite air of fatalism as events slide further and further out of control.


Chris Rhatigan, editor of All Due Respect Books, published Paul Heatley’s “Guillotine” (2019). Rhatigan and Heatley talked voice and setting. I like Heatly’s work a lot and it was nice to see him mention that he enjoys a lot of the same crime writers as I do:

Tom Leins, Gabino Iglesias, Marietta Miles, Paul D Brazill, Beau Johnson, S A Cosby, Rob Pierce, Don Winslow, and James Ellroy.


If you are looking for more links, I’m posting these daily and you can find the in the post category called Links. There’s lots there including interviews with Rachel Howzell Hall, Nik Korpon, Lauren O’Brien, and Jack Cross. There’s also some cool stuff about James Crumley and Erle Stanley Gardner.

I posted a list of upcoming crime fiction yesterday.


The image is a painting by Howell Dowd and is the cover for “Free and Easy”. I found this image via Pulp Covers.

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