Saturday, July 23, 2016

7/23/1956 First murder in the 87th Precinct

July 23, 1956.  The first recorded murder in the 87th Precinct took place on this date.  It appeared in Ed McBain's novel Cop Hater.  Over the next half century McBain went on to write more than sixty of these police procedurals, killing hundreds of fictional souls.  His series included romances, a ghost story, a political satire... and a great demonstration of how far the genre can stretch.

Mystery writer William DeAndrea once noted with surprise that he had never included McBain when asked for a list of his favorite mystery writers.  He concluded that McBain was like the Beatles in the 1960s.  You didn't bother to list them as one of your favorite bands; they were a given.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

7/17/2015 Greenfellas arrive

July 17, 2015.  Today was the official publication date for Greenfellas, a novel by Robert Lopresti.  And here is the first review:

**** Robert Lopresti, GREENFELLAS, Oak Tree Press, $17.95. If Carl Hiassen and Al Gore had collaborated on RESERVOIR DOGS, it might have come out something like GREENFELLAS. Then again, it probably wouldn't. Robert Lopresti, whose stories have appeared in EQMM, AHMM, and THE STRAND, among others, has penned a comic crime novel in which a New Jersey mobster with a bad comb-over decides to use his resources to save the environment for future generations. The dialogue is crisp and the situations darkly funny. - Steve Steinbock, "The Jury Box," ELLERY QUEEN'S MYSTERY MAGAZINE, August, 2015.

Kings River Life Magazine named it one of the best mysteries of the year.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

7/12/2002 The Road to Perdition is opened

July 12, 2002.  This day saw the premiere of the movie based on Max Allan Collins' graphic novel The Road to Perdition.  Tom Hanks plays a 1930s hitman whose wife and son are killed by his beloved boss's son.  He goes on the road with his remaining son, who he wants to keep safe.  But we know about the road paved with good intentions...

The movie was nominated for six Oscars and won for Best Cinematography (inspired by Richard Piers Rayner's graphic work).

Friday, July 1, 2016

7/1/2005 Such A Killing Crime

July 1, 2005.  Robert Lopresti's novel of murder during the folk music revival in Greenwich Village, 1963, is published, by Kearney Street Books.

Folksinger Tom Paxton said of the book: "Spooky. If I'd known he was watching us all so carefully,. I'd have behaved much better."