Thursday, March 28, 2013

Smell The Glove

Surprisingly this post is not a thinly veiled homage to those fictional rockers, Spinal Tap, but a heads up on the new anthology from NTTK. Gloves Off features more awesomeness than you can shake a stick at. Anything with stories from the likes of: Tom Pitts, Jim Spry, Gareth Spark, Mike Monson and Paul D Brazill just has to be worth your time and your money.

 If that isn’t a big enough incentive, Gloves Off also includes a rock solid spine of stories from three Zelmer Pulp originals. Brian Panowich nails it like a $20 hooker with his bad ass tale, Somebody’s Daughter and Ryan Sayles grabs hold and doesn't let go with Squeezing. My small part in this tapestry of talent is some backwoods blood letting in Brothers Under The Bridge. It’s a story about kin and the price one man has to pay when he honors the debt owed by his dead father. If all that sounds a little too deep and meaningful, think of it more in terms of a shotgun shootout, followed by a killer car chase. There, is that better?
I guess, all I’m trying to say here is if you drop a couple of bucks into the old Amazon jukebox you can get yourself a kick ass anthology for less than the price of a skinny latte. Seriously, what more could you want?  Near To The Knuckle Presents: Gloves Off

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The gloves are coming of at NTTK

Here is a sneaky peak at the cover for the new Near to the Knuckle anthology, Gloves Off designed by Steven Miscandlon. This little beauty is edited by Daz Sant & Craig Douglas and is full of bad-ass ballads from top crime writers such as: Paul D Brazill, Gareth Spark, Tom Pitts, Jim Spry and Mike Monson.
You will also find three kick ass stories from the Zelmer Pulp team with Brian Panowich, Ryan Sayles and yours truly getting in on the act.
The release date is still to be advised, but it won't be long now.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Tucson Noir

If you are in the Tucson area on Saturday 23 March, then get along to Mostly Books for a short sharp shot of noir from four of the best in the business.

My Zelmer Pulp brother, the incredibly talented Isaac Kirkman will be joined by top Tucson authors CS DeWildt, Bill Baber and Los Angeles' own Rich Osburn for an afternoon of short crime fiction readings.

I know all of these guys and I can thoroughly recommend their work. This is one of those times when I really wish I wasn’t stuck on the other side of the ocean.  

Mostly Books, 6208 E Speedway, Tucson, Arizona 85712. Tel: 520-571-0110

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Zelmer Pulp - Keep watching the skies

Citizens of Earth, the countdown has begun for a full on assault of the Sci-Fi genre by ZELMER PULP.

All the stories for our next release: HEY, THAT ROBOT ATE MY BABY! Have been turned in and as we speak they are being formatted for world domination.
It's an ambitious book for us, and we think it can hold its own with anything out there. So look out for it later this month, and don't say we didn't warn you. This ain't your daddy's science fiction. Here are some teasers, just to get you in the mood.

GEEK SQUAD 2.0  by Brian Panowich - In the 60’s and 70’s they did it with a bullet. In the 80’s and 90’s they did it with the media, but today if you want someone dead, it’s as easy as a Google search. The Geek Squad, bringing assassination to the modern age, but still can’t get dates for the prom.
WHEREVER THE LIGHT ENDS by Ryan Sayles - In 1947, twin sisters disappear from the face of the Earth during the most horrific experience of their lives. Later they are found, and they have new parents, new scars and a desire for a new life. When they die in 2012, shut-ins and with no family and no friends, the results of that one disappearance mark the end for mankind.
THIS PROTEAN LOVE by Isaac Kirkman - Adelita Salazar, the last living border agent of her precinct patrols the Tierras Oscuras, the Dark Lands, in search of her missing brother, encountering killers, and refugees, human, and machine in a futuristic world where the nature of reality is as uncertain as her future.
TIMEJACKED: THE RAND PARADOX by Chuck Regan - In the 24th Century, the ultimate form of vanity is to create a personal alternate Earth timeline. Chlör Byzantine, a B-Grade web celebrity, travels to 1957 to stop Ayn Rand from ruining the future... but she is ready and waiting for him.

THE WHORES OF GOD by Chris Leek - Earth in the 22nd Century is a nice place to visit, but you wouldn’t want to live there; the moral majority has taken a stand and if you want your kicks in 2132 you have to go off-world to get them. In the international waters of deep space everything is available, for a price. Jensen Corduroy is on a mission to get laid, but the Reverend Ellroy has a much higher purpose, he is on a mission from God.

In the meantime go and ‘Like’ us on Facebook to keep your finger on the Zelmer pulse:  ZELMER PULP

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Roadkill Review: Northline by Willy Vlautin

Willy Vlautin is the front man of an alternative country band called Richmond Fontaine; he has also to date written three novels. Heard of him? Nope, I didn’t think so.  
Northline is Willy’s second novel, but it was the first one that I actually read back in 2008. I must have read it at least a dozen times since. Like his music Willy’s books speak of loners, losers and the disenfranchised.

“I've decided I really am gonna be moving North. Like I always wanted. Just draw a line and go. A Northline.”
Allison Johnson, fleas Las Vegas and her abusive boyfriend intent on making a new life for herself in Reno. But she is haunted by her past mistakes and it’s fair to say she’s damaged goods. Her only comfort comes from the imaginary conversations she has with the actor Paul Newman, and the characters he played in his movies.

This is at times both a grim and desolate book. Alison’s story is one of self harming, bad choices and low self esteem and it breaks my damn heart every time I read it. So you might well ask why do keep coming back? I do it simply because this is the most haunting thing I have ever read.
Willy Vlautin’s style is sparse, simplistic and at times very direct. If you read some other reviews of his work you will find people talking of lack of depth and clunky progression. They have a point, but fuck ‘em, none of that matters.  It’s all about the story and the humanity that bleeds through Vlautin’s writing.  

You will find more accomplished books out there, but I doubt you’ll find a more honest and compelling one.