RARA-AVIS: Re: My last point on that topic, plus Hammett and Westlake

From: Kevin Burton Smith (kvnsmith@thrillingdetective.com)
Date: 24 Feb 2009

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    Brian wrote:

    > I was under the impression that "Poisonville" was in Montana. I know
    > that
    > it's modeled on the labor problems in Butte when the IWW tried to
    > organize
    > the copper miners there during the early part of the 20th century.
    > Hammett
    > was among the Pinks sent in as strike breakers. The experience
    > stayed with
    > him.

    For a fictionalized take on Hammett, unions, the Pinkertons and mining companies, keep an eye out for the upcoming DEVIL' S GARDEN by Ace Atkins. It's a nice companion piece (at least so far) to SPADE AND ARCHER by Gores, and boasts our man Dash as a young Pinkerton op called in to work on behalf of the defence in the notorious Fatty Arbuckle case. But the prologue is all about the murder of Frank Little. And like Gores, it looks like Atkins has definitely done his research...

    Over the years, numerous contmporary authors (William Denbow, William Nolan, Gores himself) have tried to drag some of HB's best writer's into the detective seat, with results ranging from dreadful (Denbow, who did the truly dreadful CHANDLER) to pretty damn solid (Gores' HAMMETT).

    Gimmicky? Yes. But Atkins, who wrote all those books about the blues professor (which I also found a little gimmicky), falls somewhere in between, but he's definitely leaning to the Gores end of the scale with this one...

    Kevin Burton Smith Thrilling Detective Web Site
    "It's Been a Long Time Coming" Edition Now Online

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