Thursday, September 30, 2010

Sept 30: Forgotten Music: Deadbolt-- Zulu Deathmask

Deadbolt's Zulu Deathmask from (1998) stands as the bands second best album right behind Tijuana Hit Squad. Where Hit Squad featured story songs with a hard boiled/ Noir pulp edge, Deathmask has a 40's B jungle film vibe.

Deadbolt hails from San Deigo, CA and have been playing a dark surfy 50's instrumental brand of rock and roll since the 1990s. They billed themselves as 'The worlds Scariest Band' and it was that tag that encouraged me to check them out. As I recall I picked up their first album, Shrunken Head at FBC in Lansing Michigan during my senior year at MSU. I immediately was drawn into their vibe and despite a need to throw seemingly Novelty songs on their albums I have followed and enjoyed their records.

Zulu Death Mask includes the first appearences of one of their few recurring characters, Patches the Clown.

1. 15 Year Search
2. Macombos' Revenge
3. Jackals of Botswana
4. Watongo
5. Zulu Death Mask
6. She's Gone Gongwipdu
7. Jimmie's Grave
8. Swahili Bob
9. Burn, Lil' Debby, Burn
10. Creepy and Weird
11. Return of Patches
12. October in Zimbabwe
13. Crime Scene
14. Mogimbu
15. It's a Creepy World

More Sept Forgotten Music can be found over at Scott Parker's blog HERE

Friday, September 24, 2010

FFB: Toy Soldiers By William P Kennedy

I found this book because of the film, and quickly had to devour it. In those days the moment I knew a film or TV show that I liked was based on a book I had to track down a copy.

The plot concerns a group of terrorists who take over an all boys school to use the boys to get their politically and
industrially powerful fathers to pressure the US Government into give in to their demands.

So you have your basic Die Hard in elite boys school set up. Of course there is a kid who is just enough of a pain in the ass to take on the terrorists and.... well you'll just have to read it to find out what happens.

Honestly I don't recall much of the book, only that rough plot outline and the fact that at the time this book was being written that I had already caught onto the fact that there were terrorist out there and they wished me harm. While my family never had the political clout or money to send me to a elite school (not that they would have wanted to) it was easy for me as a teen to put myself in the shoes of a group of boys facing a threat that was caused by their parents, that their parents were not able to deal with, and think what would I do?

From the vantage point of 2010, I can see the story in a different light living in a post 9/11 and post Columbine world. In 1990 it was considered paranoia to worry about terror acts in schools, today it's not so far fetched.

I might go back and reread this book someday, but I feel more of a need to see the film again.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Books I read in 1991

Following Patti's lead, here is what I read in 1991. I was a High School Senior and College freshmand during this year and managed to read a lot. Most of it was, well crap. Anyway on with the show.

The Cherokee Trail by Louis L'amour
Radigan by Louis L'amour
Danger in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
Death in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
Under the Sweatwater Rim by Louis L'amour
North to the Rails by Louis L'amour
Cat's Cradel by William W Johnstone
Kid Rodelo by Louis L'amour
Survival 200: Blood Quest by James McPhee
Where the Long Grass Grows by Louis L'amour
Playing the Dozens by Willam D Pease
Native Son by Richard Wright
Overload #9: Huntsville Horror by Bob Ham
Poodle Springs by Raymond Chandler & Robert B Parker
Survival in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
The Scions of Shannara by Terry Brooks
Manchild in the promised land by Claude Brown
Callaghen by Louis L'amour
Fury in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
Freedom's Rangers #6: Snow Kill by Keith William Andrews
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
The Killing Man by Mickey Spillane
Deathlands: Latitude Zero by James Axler
They Call Me the Mercenary #1: The Killer Genesis by Axle Kilgore
Track #1: The Nintey Nine by Jerry Ahern
They Call Me the Mercenary #3: Fourth Reich Death Squad by Axle Kilgore
Warday by Whitley Strieber & James Kunetka
They Call Me the Mercenary #?: Assassin's Express by Axle Kilgore
Overload #10: Michigan Overload by Bob Ham
Hawaiian UFO Alines by Mel Gilden
Stardust by Robert B. Parker
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Wind in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
They Call Me the Mercenary # 9: The Terror Contract by Axle Kilgore
Watchers in the Woods by William W Johnstone
Dutchman's Flat by Louis L'amour
The Strong Shall Live by Louis L'amour
Skinwalkers by Tony Hillerman
West from Singapore by Louis L'amour
Toy Soliders by William P Kennedy
Talking God by Tony Hillerman
Mutants Amok by Mark Grant
Crossfire Trail by Louis L'amour
They Call Me the Mercenary # 11: Deathlust by Axle Kilgore
Survival 200: Renegade War by James McPhee
The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston
Mutants Amok #2: Mutant Hell by Mark Grant
Mutants Amok #3: Rebel Attack by Mark Grant
Sitka by Louis L'amour
Overload #11: Alabama Bloodbath by Bob Ham
The Guardians: Night of the Phoenix by Richard Austin
The Guardians: Armaggedon Run by Richard Austin
The Mountain Valley War by Louis L'amour
They Call Me the Mercenary # 14: Siberian Alternative by Axle Kilgore
Chancy by Louis L'amour
Track #12: Drug Runner by Patrick Andrews
Toy Cemetery by William W Johnstone
Rustlers of West Fork by Louis L'amour
Hanging Woman Creek by Louis L'amour
Westward the Tide by Louis L'amour
Kiowa Trail by Louis L'amour
Rage by Richard Bachman
The Long Walk by Richard Bachman
Road Work by Richard Bachman
The Guardians: War Zone by Richard Austin
The Defender #1: The Battle Begins by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #2: The Killing Wedge by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #3: Out of Control by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #4: Decision Time by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #5: Entrapment by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #6: Escape by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #7: Vengence by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #8: Justice Denied by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #9: Death Grip by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #10: The Good Fight by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #11: The Challenge by Jerry Ahern
The Defender #12: No Survivors by Jerry Ahern
A Thief of Time by Tony Hillerman
Kilkenny by Louis L'amour
Comstock Lode by Louis L'amour
Showdown at Yellow Butte by Louis L'amour
Catlow by Louis L'amour
The Moon is Always Full by David Hunter
Shalako by Louis L'amour
Surfing Samurai Robots by Mel Gilden
The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
The Californios by Louis L'amour
Broken Claw by John Gardner
Down the Long Hills by Louis L'amour
The Guardians: #7 Brute Force by Richard Austin
The Takers by Jerry Ahern
Steel Lightning by Kevin Sherrill
Sweet Dreams by William W Johnstone
Deathlands: Seedling by James Axler
Under Siege by Stephen Coonts
The Night Whistlers by Dan Trevor
The Survivalist # 22: Brutal Conquest by Jerry Ahern
Survival 2000: Frozen Fire by James McPhee
Mutants Amok: Holocaust Horror by Mark Grant
The Takers: River of Gold by Jerry Ahern
Courage in the Ashes by William W Johnstone
Overload #12: Vegas Gamble by Bob Ham
Revenge of the Mountain Man by William W Johnstone
There was Blood on the Snow by David Hunter
Journey of the Mountain Man by William W Johnstone
tubular Android Superheroes by Mel Gilden
The Devils Heart by William W Johnstone
Blood Bond: Gun sight Crossing by William W Johnstone
Raise the Titanic by Clive Cussler
Christmas Slaughter by Mark Grant
Deathlands: Dark Carnival by James Axler
Black Friday Coming Down by David Hunter
The First Mountain Man by William W Johnstone

Patti's List can be found HERE

Friday, September 3, 2010

FFB: The Tall Dark Alibi by Carol Jerina

Lo' those many years ago, when as a High School student I would wander to the Community News Center book shop on the corner of Liberty and Division streets, brave the looks of the homeless hanging out at liberty plaza and spend my meager lunch money on paperbacks and gun magazines. I was sticking my toe into the world of crime fiction and flashy covers, and this one caught my eye.

I read it, and I held on to my copy for years, but I don't know that I could tell you really anything more about it. It was simply average and forgettable, a slice of paper that was trying to sell the TV series Moonlighting vibe in a book.

I kept looking for more books by Carol Jerina and none appeared at the Community News Center (which is now long gone of course), and the book, it's story and even the title faded from my mind. Now that I have done a little research it seems she was a romance writer, no wonder none of her other work ended up in the mystery section.

I held on to my copy of The Tall Dark Alibi for years, never reread it, and it went away in the purge of 2002 I think.

George Kelly is hosting this weeks Forgotten Books round up over at his site HERE

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Books Aug 2010

I managed to get through 5 whole books this past month and, well here's the list.

The Lovecraft Papers by P.H. Cannon
Johnny Porno by Charlie Stella
The Damsel by Richard Stark
Grave Descend by John Lang
Hunt at World's End by Nicholas Kaufmann
Barrier Island by John D MacDonald

The Lovecraft Papers is a collection of stories, the first and longest is a kind of mash up of Lovecraft and Conan Doyle, with the later shorter stories being a set P.G. Wodehouse tales by way of Lovecraft. It's good stuff, but I am not sure that I would want a steady diet of it.

Charlie Stella is a name that I have heard and when I heard that Stark House Books was going to publish their first non-reprint I knew I was going to have to check it out. It was a great twisting early 70s low level mob crime tale. I'm not going to get into all the in's and out's let's just say that if you dig 70's crime this should be right up your alley. I really like that it referenced both the book and the film The Friends of Eddie Coyle to which it has a similar feel.

Richard Stark, you can't go wrong there. The Damsel is one of the Grofield books and while it's a little meandering and took a bit to get going, it's another better than average entry in the Stark cannon. The plot is pretty basic, while recovering from the events of The Handle and a Damsel climbs in his window. She needs help, and having drawn Grofield into her drama he has little choice other than to get her out of town and into play. This isn't a heist story, but one of political intrigue, family drama with a bit of road trip/ on the run type stuff thrown in-- most importantly it left me looking forward to the next Parker book The Rare Coin Score (by the way, the newest batch of the the University of Chicago Press reprints hit shelves in the last couple of days)

Grave Descend was my Hard Case Crime selection for the month, and my first Michael Crichton read. It's a breezy, fun adventure set in the Bahamas. I am not sure why, but it left me wanting to see the film The Deep again or maybe it just put me in mind of Jacqueline Bisset (all you pulp fans really need to check her out in Le Magnifique) anyway, it was good, and I look forward to the other Crichton HHC entry Zero Cool.
speaking of adventure pulp and Le Magnifique I also read the 3rd book in the Hunt for Adventure series, HUNT AT WORLD’S END. It was ok, I have to honestly say I liked the first two better, but this was an passable adventure. I liked the globe trotting, and the archelogical set up was fine, there was just a few things that didn't jive for me, some little-- there is no safety on a SAA Colt 45 for instance -- and then there were bigger issues like the pacing was a bit herky-jerky for me. For what it was, it was fine, and I am really looking forward to getting into HUNT BEYOND THE FROZEN FIRE as told to Christa Faust.

Barrier Island was the John D book for this month, and it was the last of the books he published. It stands to his knowledge and understanding of low level business crime and his ability to tell a simple story that this book flowed so easily and kept my attention. I had to keep reminding myself that it was set in the mid 80's and not the 50's or 60's, which in hindsight was good as it didn't feel overly dated and littered with then current pop culture, fashion and slang. The cover of my copy announced that it was 13 weeks on the best seller list, I hope that many of those who picked it up in 1986 have gone back and given it another read, maybe someday I will.

that's it for the month-- thoughts, comments, ect.