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The List...again

Thirty is now fourteen. I am at the halfway point of The List. The List was born out of a desire to reinvigorate my interest in Crime Fiction. Almost two years into this plan and I feel good about where I am...emotionally....physically...with Crime Fiction

Although difficult to quantify I knew that the smart play two years ago was to focus on my core authors as a way to rekindle my interest in Crime Fiction. Chasing new authors with 'hot' debuts had lead me to a kind of ruin. My shelves became littered with authors and their two book deals that had come to nothing. A bunch three out of five star books that passed the time but never excelled.

The other effect this plan had was to appease my desire to buy books. All those disappointing debuts that amounted to so much nothing still needed replacing. The promise of buying a book is completely separate from the shrug that it can elicit when I read the last page. Filling the gaps of my core authors also filled the need I have to obtain more books, with the added benefit of buying books I had already enjoyed. A large part of me realizes that rekindling my interest in Crime Fiction is a more commercial one, but I am also aware of the failings of consumer therapy [Editor's Note: Please see my late 20's and early 30's]. Simply stated buying these books has been among the more pleasurable moments I have had immersed in the world of Crime Fiction.

James Lee Burke - Heavens Prisoner's - Black Cherry Blues - A Morning for Flamingos
Even though the remaining three are nearing 30 years old I still expected to have checked these books off the list by now. Admittedly I have had blinders on about HEAVENS PRISONER'S to even see many copies of BLACK CHEERY BLUES or A MORNING FOR FLAMINGOS. The three or four copies of HEAVENS PRISONER'S I have seen have all been nice copies saving for the inscription to the previous owner. The BLACK CHERRY BLUES copies have all been 'reminder' marked like the one I currently own. And A MORNING FOR FLAMINGOS has made only one appearance at a show back when this whole endeavor kicked off. It almost made it home with me , but then I saw a copy of THE BLACK ECHO with blue rebate band....

Robert Crais - The Monkey's Rainbow

The US first is a paperback from 1987. The UK hardcover is from 1989. The US hardcover came in 1993. The US paperback can be had for around a $100 which is great because the UK HB is $400-500. I have gonna back and forth on this one as I  am almost exclusively a hardcover collector. I decided that as Mr. Crais is an American author going for the, thankfully, cheaper pb is the only play. I did see a paperback copy at the Long Beach Bouchercon for $60(?) and never gave it more than a passing glace before someone else snapped it up. I should have had my head examined....

Sean Doolittle - Dirt

I'll have to buy this from the internet as I have never seen a copy...not ever. I can only imagine the tiny print run this book had. I still I feel like I'll roll across this in some used bookstore at some point as the the publisher was Los Angeles based.

Alan Furst - Night Soldiers - Dark Star - The World at Night - Spies of Balkan

Patience is the name of the game on Mr. Furst. He is a well regarded author and I have seen these books every now and again, so I am hopeful to grab them. 

Craig Johnson - Kindness Goes Unpunished - The Dark Horse
Olen Steinhauer - The Tourist

Like much of this list, I would have thought I could have cleaned up a few of these titles. Some random books store here or there. I think they are all a little too old to still be hanging on in some dusty book store in Glendale, CA. Believe me I have looked, several times. I did run into a THE TOURIST at The Strand in NYC, but the copies were beat. I also saw it at the California Antiquarian Book show in 2014. I just thought $40 was $10 too much for the book. 


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