Re: RARA-AVIS: San Francisco visit

From: Jeff Vorzimmer (
Date: 05 Apr 2009

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    City Lights in North Beach carries a lot of stuff average bookstores don't carry such as all the Stark House titles. They also have their own imprint known mostly for publishing Beatnik authors such as Kerouac, Ginsberg, Corso, Burroughs, etc. and that's their specialty to this day, but they also publish a series called City Lights Noir, which prints titles by European authors such as Manchette. I always drop at least a hundred bucks when I go there.

    There's another used bookstore right around the corner on Broadway (where the Beat museum is) that has a pretty good selection of hardboiled crime fiction. It just a few doors down from where El Matador used to be.

    San Francisco itself has a lot of history related to hardboiled crime fiction. It was the setting for books such as The Maltese Falcon and Willeford titles such as Pick Up, Wild Wives and the High Priest of California, Richard Neely's the Plastic Nightmare (made into the movie Shattered) and dozens of others. Hitchcock shot Vertigo there as well as scenes from The Birds (mostly shot in Bodega Bay--north of SF). There's a Hammett tour I believe, as well.

    A friend of mine from S.F. has put together an on line tour of shots from Vertigo and what those places look like today. It's called Vertigo... Then and Now and can be found at:

    Have Fun, Jeff

    > My job is sending me to San Francisco in early May.
    > Any hardboiled/noir bookstores, tours, sights to recommend?
    > Any hb/noir/detective books featuring the city you'd recommend?
    > Thanks in advance.
    > John Stickney

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