Bill Crider 1941-2018

The ending we all knew was coming has finally arrived: Author, reviewer, genre-friend Bill Crider has passed away. He was a fine author, but above that, he was a good man that loved the written word and promoted everything that touched him. His death came after a length battle with cancer.


On December 5th, he delivered his final post:


Things could change, but I suspect this will be my final post on the blog.  I met with some doctors at M. D. Anderson today, and they suggested that I enter hospice care.  A few weeks, a few months is about all I have left.  The blog has been a tremendous source of pleasure to me over the years, and I’ve made a lot of friends here.  My only regret is  that I have several unreviewed books, including Lawrence Block’ fine new anthology, Alive in Shape and Color, and Max Allan Collins’ latest collaboration with Mickey Spillane, The Last Stand,  which is a collection of two novellas, “A Bullet for Satisfaction,” an early Spillane manuscript with an interesting history, and “The Last Stand,” the last thing that Spillane completed.  It saddens me to think of all the great books by many writers that I’ll never read.  But I’ve had a great life, and my readers have been a big part of it.  Much love to you all.

His published career began when he gave the world Sheriff Dan Rhodes with 1986’s TOO LATE TO DIE (winner of the Anthony for Best First Novel) . His work included over 20 Rhodes novels, but also works in the western, young adult and even horror genres. All in all, he published over 50 novels. But beyond those, he was an active reviewer and launched a delightful blog that included bits of mystery news as well as odd factoids and linked to news that often was too strange to be true.

In May of 2016, Bill stumbled across a batch of kittens that would change his life: The Very Bad Kittens. Tomorrow, we will repost Bill’s Pet Spotlight about the VBKs, but the tale shows just how big Bill’s heart was.


All in all, Bill was a fine representative of crime fiction: He proved you did not have to be a best-selling star to be a valued  member, you simply had to have passion and heart. He will be missed and many of us will mix our feelings of loss with smiles of fond memories of the past. In the coming days, we will revisit some of his Crimespree contributions.