"You know what? The bastard blows me out of the water. This guy writes Maine like Ardai writes New York. If you're not reading him, you don't know what you're missing." --Chris F. Holm, author of The Big Reap, The Wrong Goodbye and Dead Harvest.

"Bagley's got the poet's eye, but that doesn't mean everything is prettier in his work. It means the ugly stuff is more vivid. More intense. Like a sudden switch from analog to HD. And that's a trait to very much admire in his work." --Anthony Neil Smith, author of Hogdoggin', Yellow Medicine, The Drummer and Psychosomatic.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

My Favorite Reads of 2011

Over at Pulp Pusher, I named Frank Bill's Crimes in Southern Indiana as my favorite book of 2011.  Now, I'd like to mention a few other books that I think were among last year's best.

The Adjustment by Scott Phillips.  Post-war America as experienced by a jaded veteran with a penchant for hookers, booze and putting the hammer down on anyone who crosses his boss...until the boss fucks with him. 

Choke Hold by Christa Faust.  Angel Dare is back.  'Nuff said.  Read it.

The Devil All the Time by Donald Ray Pollock.  This one made me feel the same as when I first read William Gay.  Violent.  Sad.  Gut-wrenching.  I read it twice.

Road Rules by Jim Winter.  I'm not much of an e-book guy, but Road Rules was worth a bit of eye-strain.  Winter has served up a tasty slice of gonzo noir.

El Gavilan by Craig McDonald. This might be 2011's most relevant crime novel.  The battle over immigration rages through a small Ohio city.  I don't know of any other writer who had tackled the issue in such a clear-eyed, compelling manner. 


Aaran said...

Great post......because it provides a great collection of books, these all are informative.
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Kieran Shea said...

Holy fucking shit. I thought you fled the country or something....

Patrick Shawn Bagley said...

Kieran: not yet.