Donald Ray Pollock’s The Heavenly Table

THE HEAVENLY TABLE Donald Ray Pollock July 12, 2016 Doubleday Books OK, we’re gonna try something new here. I am going to review the book as I read it. Last night I read 100 pages and I’m not bullshitting when I say I had 2 of the worst nightmares I’ve had in years. I am conflicted. I went back and re-read my review of Pollock’s 2011 novel THE DEVIL ALL THE TIME. I loved the book. I really mean that. I thought it was original and atmospheric and left me feeling unclean and slimy. One line in that previous review was about how the book made me feel like I was being molested as I read it…… Now how can you...

Review of HEAVY by JJ Anselmi

HEAVY JJ Anselmi 2016 Rare Bird Books   Ok, picture a map of the United States. Most people even when looking at the full map only see certain areas. East Coast and West Coast. Texas. Florida. Those are givens. Some see that ribbon of cities Detroit, Milwaukee, Memphis, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, etc.   What’s missing? That entire swath of land from west of the Mississippi River to California.   That includes Wyoming.   I’ve been guilty of that myself.   Something I’ve wondered what is life like in those small nameless towns in the middle of nowhere? How do people life? Do they make it out? Do they eat...

Untitled Jun12

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I’ve never thought about this, my reasons for my obsession. Let alone articulated via words on the page.   This is truly a loaded question.   Fuck. How do you describe why you get up when people are sleeping and grind away at something with no end to it?   There is no final sentence or last page in this journey…   I’m talking about the quest for strength. Mental, physical, and emotional.   But primarily physical. Through the method of moving thousands of pounds of iron 5x weekly.   It’s called powerlifting. 3 movements. The squat. The bench press. The deadlift.   I don’t train...

YOUNG AMERICANS by Josh Stallings

YOUNG AMERICANS Josh Stallings 2015 Heist Publishing I remember way back in 2002, reading a review of the film Narc, there was a line that described Jason Patric’s character I’ve always remembered. It said he looked like he crawled out from under a pile of Allman Brothers records. That always stuck with me. I remembered it while reading YOUNG AMERICANS by Josh Stallings because this book crawled out from under a pile of albums, but not necessarily the Allman Brothers. And when I say albums, I mean fucking Vinyl records, that mono sound with the hisses and cracks. The sound of this book is not re-mastered for iTunes. You need big...

REVIEW Die Dog or Eat the Hatchet

DIE DOG OR EAT THE HATCHET Adam Howe 2015 Comet Press When I came back to reviewing for CrimeSpree, I had one main objective. A mission I gave myself. I want to shine a bright light on the niche stuff: the independents and the underground writers of crime fiction. That’s what I wanted. The major publishers have enough muscle behind them. They don’t need more. However, after 2 and a half years in the woods, the landscape was vastly different from when I left and I had no idea who is doing what. So I reached out to some people whose opinions I highly respect. One name came up multiple times and that I needed to check this guy...