RARA-AVIS: Italo-noir

From: Sean Shapiro (ssshapir@yahoo.com)
Date: 29 Jul 2008

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    Okay, let's discuss an actual work--I'm currently reading Crimini published by Bitter Lemon Press, which is a collection of Italian crime fiction, and it's quite good, several of the stories fit my idea of noir. I'll be writing more about this when I finish the book, but I'm finding myself more and more hooked with some of the newer Italian crime authors--Reasonable Doubts by Gianrico Carofiglio was one of my favorite reads from last year.

    --Dave Italy seems to be producing some of the best hardboiled/noir books around.

    Carofiglio's 'The Past Is Another Country' is one of my favourite books of the year. Really captures the slippery thrill of crime.

    Carlo Lucarelli's 'Almost Blue' is one I would recommend. With its obsession with sound and its colourful killer I would say it's the closest I have seen a book come to an Italian 'giallo' (movie, that is). Currently reading 'Death's Dark Abyss' by Massimo Carlotto. Punchy. As. Hell.

    What impresses me about all these writers is their pace and economy. They're all confident enough in their material to forego the (sometimes tedious) flourishes that more literary fiction indulges in.

    Have a copy of Crimini myself. Haven't read it yet but look forward to comments.

    Anyone have similar writers to recommend?

    Sean Shapiro



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