My Favorites

I’ve always loved hard-boiled American detective novels, be they mysteries or crime thrillers, and cut my teeth on the masters — Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler and James M. Cain. I firmly believe this is an American art form that, at its best, rises above the whodunit or violent roller-coaster ride. Three latter-day masters, all of them dead Texans, are also in my personal Hall of Fame — Max Crawford, Milton T. Burton and James Crumley. Of the three, Crumley, who wrote gritty and over-the-top stories laced with drugs, sex and violence, has probably had the greatest influence on my writing.

Here is a short list of the authors I currently follow:

R.G. Belsky
Linda Sands
Baron R. Birtcher
Michael Ludden
Michael Connelly
James Lee Burke
Ben Rehder
Bill Crider
Carmen Amato
James Ellroy
James Lileks
Lawrence Block
Todd Scott
Peter J. Earle

And some of the crime fiction blogs and websites I’m following:

Bookpostmortem, Peter J. Earle’s review blog
The Thrilling Detective, Kevin Burton Smith’s blog
Detectives Beyond Borders, Peter Rozovsky’s blog
Killer Nashville, the mother ship for Clay Stafford’s magazine, conference and crime fiction review empire