Once upon a time, my friend Jedidiah Ayres invited me to a bar. Wait. Let me start over... Jed invited Pinckney and me to read at a bar in St Louis's UCity Loop. When Jed issues an invitation, one dare not refuse. He's just too darn nice (but I don't think he'd like that to get around...). Noir@TheBar is a reading series that he and fellow writer Scott Phillips started in St. Louis a couple of years ago. (I think the original N@TB series began in Philly?) Noir@TheBar events are prose-loaded, booze-fueled (okay, I sipped one beer) festivuses of crime-loving fun--for writers, readers, and brave audiences alike.
And so, with all those stories floating around the bar's formerly nicotine-laced air, Jed and Scott came up with the brilliant idea of corralling them into one tightly-packed volume of literary irreverence. Delicious cover art by Matt Kindt.
Purty, ain't it?!
Some of my favorite quotes for this collection of mayhem and madness:
"Noir at the Bar is to crime fiction what Michael Jordan was...to crime fiction." --Todd Robinson, editor of Thuglit
"I've told you repeatedly that I do not give blurbs, and in any event I wouldn't dream of giving one for this piece of crap. Don't even think of using my name or any words of mine to promote this drivel." --Lawrence Block, author of A Drop of the Hard Stuff
"Like...it...full of...Good..." --Sara Gran, author of Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead
All thoroughly within the spirit of good fiction gone nasty, I'd say.
Seriously, these stories are the real thing. I haven't any clue how I ended up in here with this crew of scruffy boys, but there I am on page 114, with my Five Revelations story from Surreal South '09. Go figure.
NOIR@THEBAR is available exclusively at and through St. Louis's remarkable indie, Subterranean Books. I think it's priced ridiculously low--something like $12.
**GIVING AWAY STUFF HERE**
I'll order up a copy of this dastardly book for each of three folks who are brave enough to comment below. BUT I won't turn loose of these books easily! You must write a pithy blurb that lovingly trashes one of your very favorite books--similar to what Gran, Block, and Robinson did above. Amuse me. Astound me. Go ahead and try to shock me with your mock cruelty. Just for fun.
You have until Monday, August 8, 6 pm, EST.
Meanwhile, I'm at a loss for words to describe the awesomeness of the trailer that Scott Phillips put together for the book. Go ahead and try not to dance while you watch it. I dare you.