Saturday, April 29, 2017

Today's Vintage Ad


Celebrate Independent Bookstore Day with MBTB!

Celebrate Independent Bookstore Day with MBTB!: Independent Bookstore Day Saturday April 29th!

Who Says TV Is Out of Ideas?

The A.V. Club: According to The Hollywood Reporter, Mike Myers is probably the person hosting ABC’s new iteration of The Gong Show. However, no one will confirm this because Myers is going to do the job in character as a British personality named Tommy Maitland.

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Adam Knight (Lawrence Lariar), I'll Kill You Next, Phantom Books (Australia), 1957 

The Boston Public Library Leads the Way

The Boston Public Library Has a 'Car Wash' for Books

Why Does It Always Have to be Snakes?

Spotted when I went on my morning constitutional.  I think he was collecting rubber bands.

Forgotten Hits: April 29th

Forgotten Hits: April 29th: Top debuts on the chart this week include Aretha Franklin at #57 with "Respect", which will go on to become one of the biggest records of the '60's, her signature tune and a timeless classic, "Creeque Alley", a new one from The Mamas and the Papas, which premiers at #68, "Him Or Me, What's It Gonna Be" by Paul Revere and the Raiders, in at #71, first week on the chart, "Mirage" by Tommy James and the Shondells, debuting at #76 while their current hit holds on to a Top Five position and "Six O'Clock" by The Lovin' Spoonful, which premiers at #81.

David Grann: By the Book

David Grann: By the Book

Friday, April 28, 2017

Richard "Racehorse" Haynes, R. I. P.

Houston Chronicle: Legendary Houston attorney Richard "Racehorse" Haynes died early this morning, according to a statement from family spokesman and criminal defense lawyer Chris Tritico. He died at 12:58 am with his family by his side after recently celebrating his 90th birthday.  He had had been in declining health for the past several years, said Tritico.

Who Says James Patterson Is Out of Ideas?

James Patterson Plans True Crime Book On Aaron Hernandez

Who Says TV Is Out of Ideas?

‘Roseanne’ Getting Revival With Roseanne Barr, John Goodman, Sara Gilbert

Tenderloin -- Court Haslett

Tenderloin is set in San Francisco in 1978, at the time when Jim Jones has moved his People's Temple out of the city to Guyana.  That doesn't mean his influence is gone, and it doesn't mean that he can't reach out and have someone killed by a very scary enforcer, however, and that's what happens in the novel.

The story is narrated by Sleeper Hayes, a Tenderloin resident who knows the area and a lot more.  He's a former hippie who's a gambler and doesn't mind partaking of drink and drugs from time to time.  He's also an amateur sleuth who gets involved in finding the killer of a hooker, and things get very dangerous for him before it's all over.  The trail of corruption goes right to the top of the city government, and a number of historical personages figure into the plot.

Haslett lays on the Tenderloin local color in just the right amounts, and he also works in some of the music and culture of the era to add to the mix.  If you're looking for a different kind of historical mystery, here it is.  Check it out.

I Miss the Old Days

What became of America's Drive-Thru Fotomat?   A bright and compact little kiosk easily recognisable by its pyramid-shaped gold-coloured roof, usually positioned in a large parking lot outside a strip mall, at its peak in the early 80s, there were over 4,000 Fotomats throughout North America. 

Song of the Day

Gabriel & The Angels - That's Life 1962 - YouTube:

I'm Sure You'll All Agree

Gustave Flaubert's Works, Ranked

Today's Vintage Ad


John Waters Interview

John Waters: “I think I am weirdly politically correct”

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F. L. Wallace, Three Times a Victim, Phantom Books (Australia), 1958

AbeBooks' Most Expensive Sales in January, February & March 2017

AbeBooks' Most Expensive Sales in January, February & March 2017

A Review of Interest (To Me, Anyway)

Kevin's Corner: FFB Review: A Time For Hanging by Bill Crider

FFB: Norstrilia -- Cordwainer Smith (Paul Linebarger)

Here's the opening of Norstrilia:  "Story, place, and time -- these are the essentials.

    The story is simple. There was a boy who bought the planet Earth. We know that, to our cost. It only happened once, and we have taken pains that it will never happen again. He came to Earth, got what he wanted, and got away alive, in a series of remarkable adventures. That's the story."

So now you know the plot.  More or less.  Let me tell you a little more.  In the far future there's a planet named Old North Australia, where there are giant diseased sheep.  From these sheep comes stroon, an immortality drug that can't be synthesized.  It's made the planet enormously rich.  And immortal, so population control is a problem.  At age 18, the youngsters have to pass a test for telepathy.  Fail, and they're killed.  Rod McBan has trouble passing, but he finally does, incurring the wrath of a former friend, who tries to have him killed anyway.  To escape the attempts on his life, Rod, with the aid of his trusty old computer, amasses a giant fortune overnight and buys Old Earth, Manhome.  He goes to Earth, has adventures, and returns to Notstrilia.

No summary can do justice to the richness of Smith's imagination and writing.  I first fell in love with his work when I read a short story called "The Game of Rat and Dragon" many years ago.  Some readers, I've heard, don't fall under Smith's spell, but I did, and it took only that one story to do the trick.  The stories, in fact, are probably the best place to start reading him before coming to this novel.  The tales of the Underpeople, who feature here as well, are as relevant now as they ever were.  Maybe even more relevant.  If you haven't read Smith before, take a look.  You might find yourself fascinated by a writer unlike any other.


Thursday, April 27, 2017

Edgar Awards

The Edgar winners. 

PimPage: An Occasional Feature in Which I Call Attention to Books of Possible Interest

Serving Justice: A Noah Milano novella by [Vandersteen, Jochem]Serving Justice: A Noah Milano novella - Kindle edition by Jochem Vandersteen, Keith Dixon, Sean Dexter. Mystery, Thriller & Suspense Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.  When security specialist and son of LA's biggest mobster, Noah Milano, moonshines as a process server and manages to anger a MMA fighter and stumble on a corpse. He's enlisted to prove a beautiful woman didn't killer her husband, the corpse Noah found. Caught in a dangerous web of deception where danger lurks around the corner and it can be very unclear who is friend and who is foe Noah Milano fights for redemption... And to serve justice.

Not Forgotten, Just Unreleased

Sgt Pepper: listen to an unreleased outtake of the Beatles' classic

Four Iconic Writers and the Felines Who Loved Them

Unlikely Cat-Lovers: Four Iconic Writers and the Felines Who Loved Them

Song of the Day

CAPTAIN BEEFHEART ~ DIDDY WAH DIDDY - YouTube:

John Waters Summer Camp for Adults

Cult Filmmaker John Waters Is Hosting a Summer Camp for Adults

Today's Vintage Ad


You Want Scary? This Is Scary.

A 30 Second Visual Guide To The Opioid Epidemic In America

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Richard Hull, The Murder of my Aunt, Pocket Books, 1947

NASA makes their entire media library publicly accessible and copyright free

DIY Photography: No matter if you enjoy taking or just watching images of space, NASA has a treat for you. They have made their entire collection of images, sounds, and video available and publicly searchable online. It’s 140,000 photos and other resources available for you to see, or even download and use it any way you like.

I'm Sure You'll All Agree

Best Car Chases from Bullitt to Mad Max: Fury Road

Forgotten Hits: April 27th

Forgotten Hits: April 27th: Big movers on the chart this week include "Shake A Tail Feather" by James and Bobby Purify (up 18 places from #61 to #43), "Groovin" by The Young Rascals (which climbs from #91 to #48, a move of 43 spots!), "Happy Jack" by The Who (which jumps from #67 to #51), "Portrait Of My Love" by The Tokens (moving from #70 to #56, a move of 14 places), "Melancholy Music Man" by The Righteous Brothers (which climbs from #84 to #59, a move of 25 places), "Little Games" by The Yardbirds, up twenty spots from #80 to #60, "I Was Kaiser Bill's Batman" by Whistling Jack Smith, up thirty spots from #94 to #64 and "My Girl Josephine" by Jerry Jay (which moves from #82 to #65)

Forgotten Music

10 Weird and Wonderful Biographies on the Music of the 1970s