Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Colorado Kid gets turned into something it's not

Stephen King's supremely shitty entry in the Hard Case Crime lineup has been optioned for a television show for the Syfy (I, know, I know, Syfy. Was there something wrong with Sci-Fi?) network for a TV show called Haven. Here's the show's description:

Syfy's all-new one-hour drama series Haven, starring Emily Rose (Jericho, Brothers and Sisters) is based on the novella The Colorado Kid from renowned author Stephen King. The series follows the shrewd and confident FBI agent Audrey Parker (Rose) who has a lost past, and arrives in the small town of Haven, Maine on a routine case. Before long, her natural curiosity lands her in the epicenter of activity in this curious enclave, which turns out to be a longtime refuge for people that are affected by a range of supernatural afflictions.

As the townspeople's dormant abilities begin to express themselves, Audrey helps keep these forces at bay while discovering the many secrets of Haven — including one surrounding her own surprising connections to this extraordinary place.

Now here's the description of The Colorado Kid:

On an island off the coast of Maine, a man is found dead. There’s no identification on the body. Only the dogged work of a pair of local newspapermen and a graduate student in forensics turns up any clues, and it’s more than a year before the man is identified.

And that’s just the beginning of the mystery. Because the more they learn about the man and the baffling circumstances of his death, the less they understand. Was it an impossible crime? Or something stranger still...?

No one but Stephen King could tell this story about the darkness at the heart of the unknown and our compulsion to investigate the unexplained. With echoes of Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon and the work of Graham Greene, one of the world’s great storytellers presents a moving and surprising tale whose subject is nothing less than the nature of mystery itself...

Do these two descriptions even seem remotely similar? Call me cynical, but it seems like someone bought the only Stephen King novel not under option just so they could put his name on a new series in hopes of getting people to watch it.

Call me when someone options Money Shot for a television show. I'd watch that.

Review of Late Rain

It's safe to lump Lynn Kostoff in with Pinckney Benedict and Madison Smartt Bell, which is to say he is a very talented writer who no one will read because they are too busy telling all their friends on Facebook how funny last night's episode of the hit sitcom "Two Bikini Models and an Adorable Puppy" was. This state of affairs does not fill my heart with hope.

Mere months after New Pulp Press resurrected Kostoff's -blink and you missed it- thriller A Choice of Nightmares, he is back with a new novel, Late Rain (Tyrus Books, 2010). The new novel is set in the low country of South Carolina, and centers around the events set in motion by the avaricious Corrine Tedros, when she conspires to have her father-in-law murdered so as to get her hands on his soft drink fortune and leave behind her sordid past forever.

When the murder is witnessed by a man in the advanced stages of Alzheimer's, former homicide detective and current beat cop Ben Decovic, who has, like Tedros, moved to the deep south to try and escape his past. It goes without saying that two characters running away from things they can't escape will eventually run right into each other with tragic results.

Late Rain
is very different in tone that Nightmares, which was a truly disorienting novel that throbbed with decadence and menace on every page. Rain is more restrained, and more straightforward, in that there are good and bad characters, and its much easier to get comfortable with since you know who you're pulling for early on. It's much more accessible in that respect, but Kostoff still refuses to tie up the story with a nice comforting bow at the end, turning what could have been a by the numbers crime story with a warm fuzzy ending into something better. Yes, the murder gets solved, but the truly evil characters still run free, and there is no real justice, just the rough approximation of justice which we are all forced to settle for in real life all too often, and the good guy gets only the consolation prize of knowing that he did what he could.
Not exactly life affirming, but then, very little in life is.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Musical Interlude: The Hold Steady

If small town cops are like swarms of flies and blackened foil is like boils and hail, then I'm pretty sure I've been through this before.

Wednesday Paperback Cover

I do believe I found Waldo.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

Gutter Books Blog and an Interview with Charlie Stella

Gutter books has started a blog. The first post is an interview with Matthew Mayo. And I know things have been quiet here, the last week or so, so here's Keith Rawson's interview with Charlie Stella, author of Johnny Porno, Stark House's first original, and a book I hope to read soon.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Your Delayed Wednesday Paperback Cover

Glen Orbik's cover for Christa Faust's forthcoming sequel to Money Shot, Choke Hold. I'd link, but it's not even up on Hard Case's website yet. I have to go smoke a cigarette now.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Cinco de Junius

Seth Harwood, podcasting fiction pioneer is back with his latest offering Young Junius, which follows a character that those familiar with his Jack Palms novels will already know. Always at the forefront of Internet Age promotion, Harwood started out podcasting his work, and ended up seeing Jack Wakes Up, published after he had released it for free as an audiobook. He's done the same with Young Junius, and he's also teamed up with Tyrus Books to do a limited edition print run of the novel, which you can pre-order here. If you scroll down that page, you'll notice that Independent Crime is listed as an affiliate with a promotion code, so this post can technically be classified as a shill, but I'm being up front about it, and I wouldn't endorse anything I thought sucked. So, consider this my endorsement. Of course, if you don't believe me, you can always listen to the free podcast version and try before you buy.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Gutter Books

The publishers of Out of the Gutter have gone into the paperback publishing business. Initial offerings include one from John D. MacDonald as well as a collection of the best of the first three issues of Out of The Gutter, which is taking submissions for Issue 7, the US. vs. UK issue.