Archives for posts with tag: mystery fiction


For a limited time, the Kindle version of The Kept Girl by Kim Cooper is available for just $2.99. Get your copy of this fascinating read at (The price is “counting down” each day until it reaches the $7.99 list price.)

ABOUT THE BOOK: Kim Cooper‘s The Kept Girl is inspired by a sensational real-life Los Angeles cult murder spree which exploded into the public consciousness when fraud charges were filed against the cult’s leaders in 1929. The victim was the nephew of oil company president Joseph Dabney, Raymond Chandler‘s boss. In the novel, Chandler, still several years away from publishing his first short story, is one of three amateur detectives who uncover the ghastly truth about the Great Eleven cult over one frenetic week. Informed by the author’s extensive research into the literary, spiritual, criminal and architectural history of Southern California, The Kept Girl is a terrifying noir love story, set against the backdrop of a glittering pre-crash metropolis. To learn more about the book, visit the author’s blog. Read a sample chapter here.

I know this is a poetic no-no (I’ve been told as such by real poets), but I just can’t help myself. Ross Macdonald‘s beautiful language makes me think of poetry, as noted below.

Chapter 4 (Opening Lines)
by Ross Macdonald

We rose into the offshore wind sweeping across the airport
and climbed toward the southern break in the mountains.
Santa Teresa was a colored air map on the mountains’ knees,
the sailboats in the harbor white soap chips in a tub of bluing.
The air was very clear.The peaks stood up so sharply
that they looked like papier-maché I could poke my finger through.
Then we rose past them into chillier air and saw
the wilderness of mountains stretching to the fifty-mile horizon.


The soon-to-be-released Silver Birch Press Noir Erasure Poetry Anthology features poems by over 40 poets around the world who based their work on the writings of about 20 different noir authors. No surprise, I’m sure, is that by far the most popular authors were Raymond Chandler (16 poems based on his work) and Dashiell Hammett (9 poems based on his work), with Ross Macdonald coming in third (three poems based on his work). Other classic authors represented in the collection include James M. Cain and Cornell Woolrich, with some current day authors (Dennis Lehane, Walter Mosely, and others) filling out the collection.

Erasure poems are created by photocopying a page from a book, then marking out, whiting out, or in other ways (see examples), eliminating some of the words. The remaining words  constitute the erasure poem.

The Silver Birch Press NOIR Erasure Poetry Anthology will be released by Dec. 1, 2013.

A special thank you to contributing editors Jenni B. Baker, Catfish McDaris, james w. moore, and Gerald So for their fabulous work in bringing fellow authors into the collection and helping spread the word.

Cover: Guy


Our friends at LAVA (Los Angeles Visionary Association) have asked us to help spread the word about an event scheduled for Saturday, April 27, 2013LAVA Literary Salon: A Dashiell Hammett Evening. This sounds like an amazing event — and if you make at least part of your living as a writer, it’s probably tax deductible (research!) — a special evening to celebrate the life and work of Dashiell Hammett, the author who started the hardboiled detective genre.

Here’s what you can expect…

Julie M. Rivett (Hammett’s granddaughter and editor of several books about him) wlll discuss the author’s professional life, private life, public life, and literary legacy.

Richard Layman, a Hammett biographer, will trace the author’s remarkable journey from high school dropout to world renowned writer.

Q&A with Rivett and Layman.

The Long Beach Shakespeare Company will present scenes starring legendary Hammett characters, including Nick and Nora Charles.

Buffet Dinner that features gourmet fare popular in exclusive restaurants circa 1950.

Date: Saturday, April 27, 2013

Time: 630-10:30 p.m.

Location: Los Angeles Athletic Club, 431 West 7th Street, Los Angeles, CA, 90014

Tickets: $100 (more information here)

ABOUT THE LAVA LITERARY SALON SERIES: LAVA’s Literary Salon is a place for lovers of great Los Angeles writers to come together in historic spaces for good company, fine food, and fascinating discussions by experts in the field. Events take place in the historic Los Angeles Athletic Club, where Raymond Chandler, then a young oil executive, played bridge and eavesdropped on the powerful men who would shape the city and his detective fiction.