When the Just Desserts mystery fiction discussion group met on March 30th, 2017, 13 of us held a rather unusual discussion of the works published by specialty publisher Hard Case Crime. HCC focuses on “hard boiled”, “noir” and “men’s adventure” fiction, harkening back to the pulp novels of the 1940s and 1950s, with somewhat scandalous covers that recreate the style of pulp paperbacks from the 1950s and 1960s. HCC reprints classic works from past authors, which have gone out of print, legendary “lost” works that have never seen the light of day previously, and also new works by established and up-and-coming authors that fit into that stylistic mode. Last Fall, the publishers at Hard Case Crime sent a box of 26 trade paperback books to the Just Desserts book group, which were distributed to members at our final meeting in 2017 (October). The March 2017 meeting was our opportunity to discuss all of these books in a very broad sense.
The books sent to Just Desserts by HCC included: The Wrong Quarry, Quarry’s Cut and Quarry in the Black, all by Max Allan Collins, Borderline by Lawrence Block, Brainquake by Samuel Fuller, Easy Death by Daniel Boyd and Cut Me In by Ed McBain. Some group members also read other HCC titles, available either through the libraries or purchased on their own, including The Colorado Kid and Joyland, both by Stephen King, Web of the City by Harlan Ellison, and Binary by Michael Crichton. Whether or not you attended the actual meeting, you are welcome to share your own thoughts and opinions about the works put out by Hard Case Crime, in a reply comment to this blog post, below.
For additional reminders about upcoming Just Desserts meetings and/or other announcements of interest to mystery fans, don’t forget to sign up for the Just Desserts e-mail list. Or, if you’re logged into your account on Facebook, you can visit the Events page for the Lincoln City Libraries, and mark whether or not you plan to attend upcoming sessions of Just Desserts – this is a great way for you to help us promote this engaging discussion group! Our selections for future meetings are usually posted there months in advance.
What do you think of Hard Case Crime?