Friday, March 25, 2016
Friday's Forgotten Books, March 25, 2016
BLACK WINGS HAS MY ANGEL, Elliot Chaze
This is quintessential noir detailing a doomed relationship. That the two lovers happen to be petty criminals heightens the tension.You can find a far more comprehensive review of it on Kirkus by our friend, J. Kinsgston Pierce. There are many other looks at it online as well.
Tim Sunblade escapes from jail and is soon also free from his time working on an oil rig. Not too much time passes before he meets his femme fatale, Virginia.
"She's a looker , ain't she, bub."
I said she was a looker.
Tim has figured out a way to score big and Virginia plays her part. But the meat of the book is what happens afterward. How mistrust and the sins they've committed haunt the lovers when they are not haunting each other.
A Gold Medal books from 1953, BLACK WINGS should be as familiar to us as DOUBLE INDEMNITY, POSTMAN or other books from that era (Goodis, Himes, Thompson). And yet it has gone out of print several times.
The writing is perfect, the relationship works because it doesn't work. It doesn't get much better than this.
Sergio Angelini, TO WAKE THE DEAD, John Dickson Carr
Joe Barone, THIS THING OF DARKNESS, Harry Bingham
Les Blatt, CALAMITY IN KENT, John Rowland
Bill Crider, BLACK MONEY, Ross Macdonald
Scott Cupp, THE DRAWING OF THE DARK, Tim Powers
Martin Edwards, AND BEING DEAD, Margaret Erskine
Curt Evans, THE CHINESE PUZZLE, Miles Burton
Ed Gorman, HIS NAME WAS DEATH, Fredric Brown
Rick Horton, PARTY GOING, Henry Green
Jerry House, THE WHISPERING GORILLA and RETURN OF THE WHISPERING GORILLA
Nick Jones, ASHENDEN, W. Somerset Maugham
George Kelley, THE SCIENCE FICTION CENTURY, David Hartwell
Margot Kinberg, KINJU, Laura Joh Rowland
Rob Kitchin, THE FIRE ENGINE THAT DISAPPEARED, Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo
B.V. Lawson, THE HOUSE AT BALNESMOOR, Hugh B, Rae
Steve Lewis, THE GOLD GAP, Frank Grueber
Todd Mason, HARRY HARRISON! HARRY HARRISON!: A MEMOIR by Harry Harrison (Tor 2014); DAVID G. HARTWELL: IN MEMORIAM edited by Kevin J. Maroney, Kris Dikeman and Avram Grumer (NY Review of Science Fiction/ICFA 2016)
J.F. Norris, BREATHE NO MORE, Marion Randolph
Matt Paust. THE MOLESKIN CHECKLIST, Jeffrey Scott Holland
Reactions to Reading, A KILLER COLLECTION, Ellery Adams
James Reasoner, RAWHIDE RANGE, Ernest Haycox
Richard Robinson, FUNNY MONEY, James Swain
Gerard Saylor, THE HONORED SOCIETY, Petra Reska
Kerrie Smith, MAIGRET IN NEW YORK, George Simenon
Kevin Tipple, A KNIFE IN THE BACK, Bill Crider
The Rap Sheet/Steven Nester, THE BLACK AND THE RED, Elliot Paul
TomCat, DEATH AT ST. AUBREY'S SCHOOL, Leo Bruce
TracyK, A MURDER OF QUALITY, John LeCarre
Westlake Review, HIGH ADVENTURE, Part 2
Zybahn, ACADEMY MYSTERY NOVELLAS, Greenberg and Pronzini