On the heels of his first collection, 1984’s THE DARK COUNTRY, as well as two decades worth of short fiction, a handful of pseudonymous novels written (or co-written in one case) for the same sorts of adult markets Donald E. Westlake, Lawrence Block, and Robert Silverberg had been writing for, as well as a near […]Read more "THE DARK SIDE’S CALLING NOW, NOTHING’S REAL: DENNIS ETCHISON’S DARKSIDE"
Synopsis: The last time expert wheelman Crunch Calhoun (Kurt Russell) worked with his no good brother Nicky (Matt Dillon) on a job (swindling a painting from a European mobster), he ended up in a Warsaw prison for seven years. Well, five and a half with good behavior. Now that he’s out, Crunch is no longer […]Read more "MOVIE MONDAYS: THE ART OF THE STEAL"
According to the introduction for the Felony & Mayhem editions of this series, Westlake took a page from John D. MacDonald when sitting down to write his Sam Holt series. I knew that John D. MacDonald, when he started Travis McGee, wrote the first three books simultaneously, because it was his first attempt at a […]Read more "CONSIDERING WESTLAKE: I KNOW A TRICK WORTH TWO OF THAT"
Synopsis: When The King of Rock and Roll kicked off his comeback tour in Las Vegas, 1969 he had been away from stage for almost a decade. “Living in seclusion” newscasters and commentators said. In the hours leading up to the performance, what did Elvis (Kurt Russel) think about? Well, as John Carpenter’s movie for […]Read more "MOVIE MONDAYS: ELVIS"
In May 2019, the horror fiction field lost one of its finest practitioners: Dennis Etchison. Etchison appeared on the landscape in the 70s, penning stories that would appear in various markets (men’s magazines as well as genre staples of the time such as WHISPERS), often making effective use of quiet chills through moody, focused writing. […]Read more "ONLY THE NIGHT PEOPLE KNOW: DENNIS ETCHISON’S THE DARK COUNTRY"
Synopsis: Dean Proffitt (Kurt Russell) is a man trying to keep his head above water. It’s not easy being a single dad of four, after all, so he’s willing to take crap jobs (sometimes literally, as in the case of hauling bags of fertilizer), but when he is called to a rich dude’s yacht for […]Read more "MOVIE MONDAYS: OVERBOARD"
After a career spent successfully balancing works published under his own name and those published under pseudonym, Westlake found his next series work hampered by a miscommunication with (if not skulduggery from) his publisher. He wanted his new “detective” series to go out under a pseudonym, and although the name on the covers was indeed […]Read more "CONSIDERING WESTLAKE: ONE OF US IS WRONG"