08 December 2008

Fifty down

In September of 2004, an outfit called Winterfall LLC--who'd hooked up with Dorchester Publishing--put out a reprint of Lawrence Block's debut novel Mona (retitled as Grifter's Game). They called their venture Hard Case Crime. In February of 2006 I joined Dorchester's Hard Case Crime book club, and they started sending me two titles each month. You got that month's featured selection and one from the back catalog--such a deal! A year later they dropped the two-book deal, and I had to back order five books to complete the collection. All the books feature spectacular cover art reminisicent of the early days of the paperback crime novel. Lurid, splashy, provocative, juvenile, tawdry and brilliant, these covers are the line's signature. (Check out Glenn Orbik's work!) My bookshelf proudly features the first fifty. Number fifty-one comes out in January of 2009. Fittingly, it is a Lawrence Block reprint, and will be the fifth one of his books to be published in the series.

I have now read ALL fifty books in the series. This is the best stuff coming out of any publishing house anywhere in any genre. If you aren't hooked in to Hard Case Crime then YOU ARE MISSING OUT!

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