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Charles Willeford, ‘The Way We Die Now’ (1988)

Charles Willeford’s protagonist in the Hoke Moseley novels (of which The Way We Die Now is the fourth and last) is an unlikely hero. A police detective in Miami, Moseley starts the series living alone in a seedy hotel, paying his way by acting as the hotel’s unofficial security guard. He is overweight, casually racist, a slob … Continue reading

Jim Thompson, ‘Pop. 1280’ (1964)

What is evil? That’s a question that’s kept philosophers, artists and writers busy for thousands of years. Literature is full of examples, one of my own favourites being Shakespeare’s Richard III, a play I’ve been mildly obsessed with since my teens. This is probably because it was the first Shakespeare I remember seeing in the theatre. … Continue reading

The McBainiad, Book 3: ‘The Pusher’ (1956)

‘Winter came in like an anarchist with a bomb. Wild-eyed, shrieking, puffing hard, it caught the city in cold, froze the marrow and froze the heart.‘ When a drug user is found dead in a freezing basement a week before Christmas, detectives Carella and Kling soon find themselves looking for a murderer amongst the precinct’s … Continue reading

Lavie Tidhar, ‘The Violent Century’ (2013)

I first became aware of Lavie Tidhar a couple of years ago, when I read his controversial novel Osama. It’s not difficult to see why – Osama describes the search for pulp writer Mike Longshott, author of a series of books in which the main protagonist is a freedom fighter named Osama bin Laden. Turning bin Laden … Continue reading