Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Let me backtrack for a second...

[Editors Note: I wrote this post about six weeks ago. I have been tinkering with it since. It is a bog standard post so I don't understand my reticence. Even now I don't think it is done.]

My latest purchases are Edward Gorey books. I'll talk about them, but first let me go back. I bought the four most recent books by Adrian McKinty. I read them in about six weeks. The books were restorative in the exact way that I had hoped. A solid author turning in solid work. Perhaps that sounds like damning them with faint praise, not all. I found the Duffy Trilogy along with FALLING GLASS to be the most evocative books I've read in sometime. Along with the McKinty, the latest Michael Connolly, and likely the best Easy Rawlins in fifteen years means that I can't even remember the last book I read that was a dud. 

The California Antiquarian Book Fair happened more than a few months ago now. I talked up the lock I felt that purchasing James Lee Burke's HEAVEN'S PRISONERS was. It didn't happen. I never even saw the book among the 200-250 vendors. I get the show is not geared away for Crime Fiction, but I hoped Mr. Burke's work would be among the genre authors to make an appearance. I looked for other delights, primarily following Ricky Jay around for about thirty to forty-five minutes.

On a positive note there were small caches of Edward Gorey to be found. I ran across two copies of THE LOATHSOME COUPLE, both were only in fair condition. I also found some of the more pricey limited edition works that are fun to see and dream about owning. Finally, I found a copy of THE LOATHSOME COUPLE in what amounted to an unread copy in the last row. Easy purchase. The fact that it came under the amount that I had prepared to spend on the Burke made it all the better.

Anyway. I'm headed home in a few days. I'll hunt down some James Lee Burke's from the list, maybe get lucky on The TOURIST by Olen Steinhauer. [Editors Note: I did not, and came home with nothing]

More soon.

Wednesday, February 05, 2014



The (new) Big Four plus the Gorey

1. Heaven's Prisoners - James Lee Burke
Still number one, and with good reason. There are just too many gaps in my JLB collection for comfort. I am hoping to to pick this up at the big California Antiquarian Book Fair this week in Pasadena. If I can grab this book the fair will be a success for me.

With recent purchases I was able to pick off A Firing Offense and Nick's Trip, two picks that will now never make this list. Let's see how long this book last on the list. I am a big advocate for buying something just so that I can stop thinking about it. This does not cover all occasions hence the reason why I do not have a Xbox.

3. The Beekeeper's Apprentice - Laurie R. King
I am somewhat pinning my hopes on the Long Beach Bouchercon to pull the trigger on this book. The dealer room should have a few to choose from and if past BCons have proven anything most people are not looking to buy expensive books in that room.

4. A Morning for Flamingos - James Lee Burke
After much consternation I went with A Morning for Flamingos in the four spot. For a good deal of time I had a Craig Johnson book in here and then briefly flirted with The Tourist by Olen Steinhauer. Flamingos makes the cut because after Heaven's Prisoners it is oldest book on the list. Playing off what I said about that book above, I think most of the year is going to spent on filling those gaps.

The Loathsome Couple - Edward Gorey
In the months since turning some of my collecting attention to Edward Gorey I have seen exactly zero books by the author. Sure there have been a few recent reprints, but for the time being that falls out of my current purview. I fear I would have better luck on the East Coast finding Mr. Gorey's canon. Time will tell.

Monday, January 20, 2014

This Bit of Business...

(Photo above is definition of awesomeness, also
I stole the image form the Polis Books website)
The return of 'Awesome' Dave White! The Return of Jackson Donne! Read. This. Guy. Hurry February. Hurry....

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Recent Purchases

(Photo above is evidence of corrected behavior)
Dear Adrien McKinty -- I could use the excuse that gutless American publishers have kept me from purchasing your books over the last few years. They did not. Amazon UK is both a blessing and a curse in this case. I could tell you that I have experienced an ennui about Crime Fiction over the last three years. I could also tell you an equally convoluted story about priorities and lessons of adulthood that are still mysterious even at the age of 42. I'll spare you as I am certain that it would bore you as quickly as it does me at this point.
So, let me write that I recently bought three of your books, and that I think of DEAD I MAY WELL BE so often.

All my very best to you in the New Year,

The Hungry Detective

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A Good Mail Day...

A good mail day that should be classified as great. These three book are big for me. I stared at them so often only to put them back on shelves and walk away. I no longer have to do that. I own them. They belong to me. They are a completion of a thought that began long ago with the words "One day I will..."

Today is that day.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Recent Purchase

Alan Furst
Night Soldiers
Dark Star
The World at Night
Red Gold
Spies of Balkan
Mission to Paris

Alan Furst is a tough get. Only occasionally do his books show up in stores or shows. When they do it's the early work from the late 70's early 80's or The Polish Officer. My guess is The Polish Officer was the publishers push to put Mr. Furst in the same public consciousness as John Le Carre. Anyway Red Gold was mercifully priced at $25. I would have paid double, but I would not have been happy about it.