Cutting Edge: New Stories of Mystery and Crime by Women Writers

Edited by Joyce Carol Oates. Akashic, $15.95 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-61775-762-4
The 15 stories and six poems in this slim yet weighty all-original noir anthology—contributors include Margaret Atwood and Edwidge Danticat—are razor-sharp and relentless in their portrayal of life, offering snapshots of dysfunction, everyday toil, and brief joy. It is unusual, however, in its scope, zeroing in not only on what the female characters endure but what they dish out, as shown in Valerie Martin’s “Il Grifone” and S.A. Solomon’s “Impala.” Though the compilation is often bleak and disturbing (Cassandra Khaw’s “Mothers, We Dream” comes to mind), it is also startlingly imaginative in characterization and setting, and at times wickedly funny (cue Bernice L. McFadden’s “OBF, Inc.”). Each story sears but does not cauterize, leaving protagonists and readers raw. As Oates points out in her introduction, and the stories hauntingly evoke, noir’s strength has very little to do with man-centric plots and everything to do with female ascendance. Fans of contemporary crime fiction won’t want to miss this one. Agent: Warren Frazier, John Hawkins & Assoc. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 09/10/2019
Release date: 11/01/2019
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Open Ebook - 222 pages - 978-1-61775-785-3
Compact Disc - 978-1-68457-344-8
Hardcover - 288 pages - 978-1-61775-761-7
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