San Francisco Noir 2: The Classics

Peter Maravelis, Editor Akashic $15.95 (330p) ISBN 978-1-933354-65-1

This classics entry in Akashic's noir anthology series boasts an impressive roster of names, including such standard authors as Mark Twain, Jack London, Ambrose Bierce and Dashiell Hammett. Unsurprisingly, Hammett, one of the fathers of American hard-boiled fiction, supplies the best story, “The Scorched Face,” which sets his Continental Op on the trail of two missing women. Marcia Muller's “Deceptions” makes good use of the Golden Gate Bridge's appeal to potential suicides in a short but gripping exploit of her series PI, Sharon McCone. Readers looking for lesser-known talent will welcome Janet Dawson's “Invisible Time,” which presents a grim view of life on the streets for two young people. Don Herron's gritty “Knives in the Dark,” with its Chandler-like plot line, convincingly depicts Prohibition-era tough guys. As usual, the overall caliber of the writing in this reprint volume is superior to the average all-original book in the series. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/15/2008
Release date: 02/01/2009
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Ebook - 300 pages - 978-1-61775-224-7
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