014 The Girl with the Long Green Heart, Lawrence Block, reprint 1965
015 The Gutter and the Grave, Ed McBain, reprint 1958
016 Night Walker, Donald Hamilton, reprint 1954
017 A Touch of Death, Charles Williams, reprint 1953
018 Say It with Bullets, Richard Powell, reprint 1953
019 Witness to Myself, Seymour Shubin, new original 2006
020 Bust, Ken Bruen and Jason Starr, new original 2006
021 Straight Cut, Madison Smartt Bell, reprint 1986
022 Lemons Never Lie, Richard Stark, reprint 1971
023 The Last Quarry, Max Allan Collins, new original 2006
024 The Guns of Heaven, Pete Hamill, reprint 1983
025 The Last Match, David Dodge, newly published 1973 novel
Hmmm. The Collins is based on older short stories, but I'll call it a "newbie." The Dodge is technically new, but I'm counting it as an "oldie," since it was written over thirty years ago. That gives us three new and nine old.
The score after 25 books: 16 to 9 in favor of the "classics." My faves? The Stark (Westlake) and Block are hard to beat. The consistent excellence of those two always amazes me. But the Starr-Bruen creation, Bust, is one of the funniest and most twisted books I've ever read. Those two are sick. And hilarious. A real highlight of the entire collection. I liked the Shubin as well, but it is an entirely different kettle of fish from Bust.
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