Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Quarry - Max Allan Collins & Terry Beatty
I've said many, many times here that Max Collins' Quarry books are among my all-time favorite hardboiled crime novels. For me there are two reasons for my enthusiasm-One, Max makes Quarry a real human being, something fictional hired killers almost never are; Two, the storytelling in these books is flawless. The pacing, the twists, the black comedy, the actually sexy sex and the always staggering payoffs. These are books that can be enjoyed again and again. I've probably read each of them at least five or six times. They get richer with age.
Now, thanks to Perfect Crime books, the Quarrys have the packaging they deserve. Terry Beatty, artist extraordinary, has designed the look and done the illustrations. Terry has won many awards for his work and has done everything from Batman to advertising.
The photo at the top was Max at the time he began writing the Quarrys. He explains this in his excellent afterwards found in each novel.
Holiday gifts? You bet. Anybody who appreciates superior storytelling, vivid characterization and plotting that just doesn't quit will be happy to get these books. I promise.
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I first met Max many long years ago and he didn't look like that. Times change. I have all of the older books in their original editions. I'll have to reread them some day.
I just finished Quarry's Cut. Darn good read.
Fine novels that Berkeley, in the original editions, saddled with photo covers that looked godawfully cheesy at the time. Decades later, to me at least, those covers have a rather charming 70s retro-vibe, like the similar photo covers that Curtis Books put on the first two Nolan titles. But the new packaging is certainly classier.
Just ordered The Last Quarry along with Majic Man and Chicago Confidential. And, lo, I happened across a McCain that I'd overlooked - Everybody's Somebody's Fool, and added that to the list as well as The Night Remembers. Made it over the magic $25 free shipping limit to boot. Some might fine reading ahead!
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