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The Best American Noir of the Century

The Best American Noir of the Century Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

“Well worth its impressive weight in gold, it would be a crime not to have this seminal masterpiece in your collection.”—New York Journal of Books

In his introduction to The Best American Noir of the Century, James Ellroy writes, “Noir is the most scrutinized offshoot of the hard-boiled school of fiction. Its the long drop off the short pier and the wrong man and the wrong woman in perfect misalliance. Its the nightmare of flawed souls with big dreams and the precise how and why of the all-time sure thing that goes bad.” Offering the best examples of literary sure things gone bad, this collection ensures that nowhere else can readers find a darker, more thorough distillation of American noir fiction.

      James Ellroy and Otto Penzler mined writings of the past century to find this treasure trove of thirty-nine stories. From noirs twenties-era infancy come gems like James M. Cains “Pastorale,” and its postwar heyday boasts giants like Mickey Spillane and Evan Hunter. Packing an undeniable punch, diverse contemporary incarnations include Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Joyce Carol Oates, Dennis Lehane, and William Gay, with many page-turners appearing from the past decade.

“Delightfully devilish . . . A strange trek through the years that includes stories from household names in the hard-boiled genre to lesser-known authors who nonetheless can hold their own with the legends.”—Associated Press

James Ellroy is the author of the Underworld U.S.A. trilogy—American Tabloid, The Cold Six Thousand, and Bloods a Rover—and the L.A. Quartet novels, The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz. His most recent book is The Hillicker Curse, a memoir.

Otto Penzler is the founder of the Mysterious Bookshop and Mysterious Press, has won two Edgar Allan Poe Awards (most recently for The Lineup), and is series editor of The Best American Mystery Stories.

Review:

"Surprisingly, 20 of the 39 well-chosen stories published between 1923 and 2007 in this impressive crime anthology date to the last two decades, which may sound counterintuitive to casual readers who associate noir with the 1940s and 1950s. All the contributors excel at showing the omnipresence of the dark side of humanity in many different times and locales. In addition to names synonymous with noir such as Cornell Woolrich and Jim Thompson, Ellroy (Blood's a Rover) and Penzler (The Best American Mystery Stories) offer depressing fare from writers better known for other work, like David Morrell, whose first published story, 'The Dripping,' about the disappearance of a man's wife and daughter, is one of the book's best. Lesser-known authors also distinguish themselves, like Christopher Coake, whose reverse chronology in 'All Through the House' serves to heighten the suspense rather than dissipate it. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)

Synopsis:

Ellroy and Penzler have mined 100 years of writing--1910-2010--for this treasure trove of 39 stories from such favorite authors as Mickey Spillane, Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Dennis Lehane, and Joyce Carol Oates.

Synopsis:

A treasure trove of a hundred years worth of the finest noir writing selected by James Ellroy

Synopsis:

An unparalleled treasury of American 19th century mystery fiction selected and introduced by Otto Penzler.

Synopsis:

For the 100th anniversary of The Best American Short Stories series, a retrospective of stories selected by master of the form Lorrie Moore. The stories, along with one hundred years of behind-the-scenes anecdotes and decade-by-decade analysis, tell the history of American short fiction, showcasing representative moments in the series as well as literary moments in time.

Synopsis:

An unparalleled treasury of crime, mystery, and murder from the genres founding century

With stories by Washington Irving, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott, L. Frank Baum, Edith Wharton, Stephen Crane, and Jack London, The Best American Mystery Stories of the Nineteenth Century is an essential anthology of American letters. Its a unique blend of beloved writers who contributed to the genre and forgotten names that pioneered the form, such as Anna Katharine Green, the godmother of mystery fiction, and the African-American writer Charles W. Chesnutt. Of course, Penzler includes “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” recognized as the first detective story, and with thirty-three stories spanning the years 1824-1899, nowhere else can readers find such a surprising, comprehensive take on the evolution of the American mystery story.

Synopsis:

“Well worth its impressive weight in gold, it would be a crime not to have this seminal masterpiece in your collection.”—New York Journal of Books

In his introduction to The Best American Noir of the Century, James Ellroy writes, “Noir is the most scrutinized offshoot of the hard-boiled school of fiction. Its the long drop off the short pier and the wrong man and the wrong woman in perfect misalliance. Its the nightmare of flawed souls with big dreams and the precise how and why of the all-time sure thing that goes bad.” Offering the best examples of literary sure things gone bad, this collection ensures that nowhere else can readers find a darker, more thorough distillation of American noir fiction.

      James Ellroy and Otto Penzler mined writings of the past century to find this treasure trove of thirty-nine stories. From noirs twenties-era infancy come gems like James M. Cains “Pastorale,” and its postwar heyday boasts giants like Mickey Spillane and Evan Hunter. Packing an undeniable punch, diverse contemporary incarnations include Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Joyce Carol Oates, Dennis Lehane, and William Gay, with many page-turners appearing from the past decade.

“Delightfully devilish . . . A strange trek through the years that includes stories from household names in the hard-boiled genre to lesser-known authors who nonetheless can hold their own with the legends.”—Associated Press

James Ellroy is the author of the Underworld U.S.A. trilogy—American Tabloid, The Cold Six Thousand, and Bloods a Rover—and the L.A. Quartet novels, The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz. His most recent book is The Hillicker Curse, a memoir.

Otto Penzler is the founder of the Mysterious Bookshop and Mysterious Press, has won two Edgar Allan Poe Awards (most recently for The Lineup), and is series editor of The Best American Mystery Stories.

About the Author

James Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. His L.A. Quartet novels—The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz—were international bestsellers. His most recent book is Bloods a Rover.
Otto Penzler is a renowned mystery editor, publisher, columnist, and owner of New York's The Mysterious Bookshop, the oldest and largest bookstores solely dedicated to mystery fiction. He  has edited more than fifty crime-fiction anthologies.

Table of Contents

Introduction ix

1824 • Washington Irving The Story of the Young Robber 1

1827 • William Leggett The Rifle 8

1834 • Nathaniel Hawthorne Mr. Higginbothams Catastrophe 30

1841 • Edgar Allan Poe The Murders in the Rue Morgue 42

1845 • Edgar Allan Poe The Purloined Letter 73

1846 • Abraham Lincoln Remarkable Case of Arrest for Murder 90

1850 • Daniel Webster The Fatal Secret 97

1862 • Thomas Bailey Aldrich The Danseuse 100

1865 • Louisa May Alcott A Double Tragedy: An Actors Story 112

1875 • Allan Pinkerton The Two Sisters; Or, The Avenger 132

1882 • Frank Stockton The Lady, or the Tiger? and The Discourager of Hesitancy 182

1883 • Mark Twain A Thumb-print and What Came of It 194

1888 • Ambrose Bierce My Favorite Murder 207

1889 • Charles W. Chesnutt The Sheriffs Children 215

1891 • Richard Harding Davis Gallegher 230

1892 • William Norr Round the Opium Lamp 256

1894 • Percival Pollard Lingo Dan 261

1895 • Rodrigues Ottolengui The Nameless Man and The Montezuma Emerald 270

1895 • Anna Katharine Green The Doctor, His Wife, and the Clock 292

1895 • William M. Hinkley A Very Strange Case 330

1895 • Mary E. Wilkins The Long Arm 343

1896 • Cleveland Moffett The Mysterious Card and The Mysterious Card Unveiled 371

1896 • Mark Twain Tom Sawyer, Detective 394

1896 • Melville Davisson Post The Corpus Delicti 445

1897 • L. Frank Baum The Suicide of Kiaros 470

1897 • Robert W. Chambers The Purple Emperor 482

1898 • Edward Bellamy At Pinneys Ranch 501

1898 • Stephen Crane The Blue Hotel 514

1899 • Edith Wharton A Cup of Cold Water 541

1899 • Nicholas Carter The Detectives Pretty Neighbor 565

1899 • Ellen Glasgow A Point in Morals 583

1899 • Jack London A Thousand Deaths 595

Product Details

ISBN:
9780547330778
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - Hard-Boiled
Editor:
Penzler, Otto
Editor:
Ellroy, James
Author:
Pitlor, Heidi
Author:
Penzler, Otto
Author:
Ellroy, James
Author:
Moore, Lorrie
Subject:
Anthologies (multiple authors)
Subject:
Mystery-A to Z
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - General
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series:
Best American
Publication Date:
20151006
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Language:
English
Illustrations:
no art
Pages:
768
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 1 lb

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » Anthologies
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » Sale Books

The Best American Noir of the Century
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 768 pages Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) - English 9780547330778 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Surprisingly, 20 of the 39 well-chosen stories published between 1923 and 2007 in this impressive crime anthology date to the last two decades, which may sound counterintuitive to casual readers who associate noir with the 1940s and 1950s. All the contributors excel at showing the omnipresence of the dark side of humanity in many different times and locales. In addition to names synonymous with noir such as Cornell Woolrich and Jim Thompson, Ellroy (Blood's a Rover) and Penzler (The Best American Mystery Stories) offer depressing fare from writers better known for other work, like David Morrell, whose first published story, 'The Dripping,' about the disappearance of a man's wife and daughter, is one of the book's best. Lesser-known authors also distinguish themselves, like Christopher Coake, whose reverse chronology in 'All Through the House' serves to heighten the suspense rather than dissipate it. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
"Synopsis" by , Ellroy and Penzler have mined 100 years of writing--1910-2010--for this treasure trove of 39 stories from such favorite authors as Mickey Spillane, Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Dennis Lehane, and Joyce Carol Oates.
"Synopsis" by ,
A treasure trove of a hundred years worth of the finest noir writing selected by James Ellroy
"Synopsis" by ,

An unparalleled treasury of American 19th century mystery fiction selected and introduced by Otto Penzler.

"Synopsis" by ,
For the 100th anniversary of The Best American Short Stories series, a retrospective of stories selected by master of the form Lorrie Moore. The stories, along with one hundred years of behind-the-scenes anecdotes and decade-by-decade analysis, tell the history of American short fiction, showcasing representative moments in the series as well as literary moments in time.
"Synopsis" by , An unparalleled treasury of crime, mystery, and murder from the genres founding century

With stories by Washington Irving, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott, L. Frank Baum, Edith Wharton, Stephen Crane, and Jack London, The Best American Mystery Stories of the Nineteenth Century is an essential anthology of American letters. Its a unique blend of beloved writers who contributed to the genre and forgotten names that pioneered the form, such as Anna Katharine Green, the godmother of mystery fiction, and the African-American writer Charles W. Chesnutt. Of course, Penzler includes “The Murders in the Rue Morgue,” recognized as the first detective story, and with thirty-three stories spanning the years 1824-1899, nowhere else can readers find such a surprising, comprehensive take on the evolution of the American mystery story.

"Synopsis" by , “Well worth its impressive weight in gold, it would be a crime not to have this seminal masterpiece in your collection.”—New York Journal of Books

In his introduction to The Best American Noir of the Century, James Ellroy writes, “Noir is the most scrutinized offshoot of the hard-boiled school of fiction. Its the long drop off the short pier and the wrong man and the wrong woman in perfect misalliance. Its the nightmare of flawed souls with big dreams and the precise how and why of the all-time sure thing that goes bad.” Offering the best examples of literary sure things gone bad, this collection ensures that nowhere else can readers find a darker, more thorough distillation of American noir fiction.

      James Ellroy and Otto Penzler mined writings of the past century to find this treasure trove of thirty-nine stories. From noirs twenties-era infancy come gems like James M. Cains “Pastorale,” and its postwar heyday boasts giants like Mickey Spillane and Evan Hunter. Packing an undeniable punch, diverse contemporary incarnations include Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Joyce Carol Oates, Dennis Lehane, and William Gay, with many page-turners appearing from the past decade.

“Delightfully devilish . . . A strange trek through the years that includes stories from household names in the hard-boiled genre to lesser-known authors who nonetheless can hold their own with the legends.”—Associated Press

James Ellroy is the author of the Underworld U.S.A. trilogy—American Tabloid, The Cold Six Thousand, and Bloods a Rover—and the L.A. Quartet novels, The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, L.A. Confidential, and White Jazz. His most recent book is The Hillicker Curse, a memoir.

Otto Penzler is the founder of the Mysterious Bookshop and Mysterious Press, has won two Edgar Allan Poe Awards (most recently for The Lineup), and is series editor of The Best American Mystery Stories.

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