May 29, 2009

Dr. Horrible's sing along blog

We just watched Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog and I could not stop laughing.

We then watched it again with "Commentary, the musical"

These people are beyond talented. The Whedon brothers wrote great music and the whole cast is great. The songs are stuck in my head firm and fast.

You need this.
Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

May 22, 2009

Anniversery special

We're celebrating 5 years of Crimespree and as part of that we're offering a special offer

If you subscriber or renew your subscription before June 10th we'll add an extra issue to your subscription and enter you to win a cool and styling Crimespree T shirt.

You can subscribe here:

May 20, 2009

Potter's Field from BOOM! Studios

Here's what the publisher has to say:

Legendary comic writer Mark Waid teams up with the critically-acclaimed artist of BOOM!'s own hit, TALENT!, Paul Azaceta. Outside New York City is Potter's Field, where the unnamed dead are buried. Now, a mysterious man has taken it upon himself to name the unnamed in this cemetery! Using a network of underground operatives who don't know each other, he fights to save the unsaved and solve the mysteries of the unjustly slain!

What I've got to say is that I love this book. Mark Waid must surely love the same crime fiction I do, either that or we share a birth sign or something. This is the kind of story I love.

A man who is referred to only as John Doe has taken it upon himself to discover who is buried in the unmarked graves in New York's Potter's Field. He also then avenges their deaths. Part of doing this includes our mystery man having a network of people who he calls upon for help, a device used by The Shadow and other great heroes. But because of the skills that Waid has our man isn't necessarily a hero, but maybe a man driven by his own past to atone for something. he's at once complex and yet easy to understand. A true conundrum of a character. His skills at solving these mysteries is classic PI style detective work and his solutions resemble that of some of my favorite complex character from crime fiction.

The artwork is wonderfully moody and gitty and perfect for this. Paul Azaceta is really going to be a name people recognize more and more.

I hope to see a lot more of this series. This hardcover collects Potter's Field #1-3 and Potters Field: Stone Cold and it's published by BOOM! STUDIOS

Buy Potter's Field

May 19, 2009

Andrew Grant Interview

This interview ran in Crimespree Magazine issue 29

Andrew Grant's first book, EVEN is in stores now. (And signed copies available at some great independent bookstores, like Mystery One in Milwaukee)

He was recently featured in the New York Times with his brother Lee Child. (But we interviewed him first!

Jon Jordan: Even comes out May 12th, is this the first book you wrote, or the first one you sold?

Andrew Grant: Both!

JJ: How long did it take to write EVEN?

AG: The basic ideas for EVEN were taking shape in my head for a couple of years before I quit my job, but once I was ‘free’ it took me almost exactly eight months to write the book.

JJ: It feels like a series to me, is that the case?

AG: Yes. Right from the outset EVEN was conceived as the first in a long-running series. I hope the world will want to see a lot more of David Trevellyan…

JJ: How did you decide on the type of character to write? Is it based on what you enjoy reading and watching?

AG: Every decision relating to EVEN was based on what I like to read. My plan was simple - to put in lots of the things that I enjoy in thrillers, and none of the things that I don’t.

JJ: And on that subject, what do you enjoy reading?

AG: Anything and everything! Books, magazines, catalogues, cereal packets…
As a kid I would devour endless Alistair MacLean / Douglas Reeman type action adventure stories. Later I moved onto cold war / spy series by the likes of Len Deighton and John leCarré, passed through the obligatory Thomas Harris-inspired serial killer phase, and more recently have been hooked by authors such as Michael Connelly, Sandra Brown, Thomas Perry, John Sandford, Nelson DeMille, Jeffery Deaver, Dennis Lehane, Vince Flynn, Lisa Gardner, Harlan Coben , Tess Gerritsen, Mark Billingham and Ridley Pearson.

JJ: What kind of movies do you like?

AG: I like movies in which the writer and director try to find new or unusual ways to tell their story – for example Memento with Guy Pearce and Joe Pantoliano, where a twist of the plot leads them to start at the end and move backwards in time…

JJ: Your bio says you worked in telecommunications, of course that’s also what Trevellyan says in the beginning of EVEN. So what exactly does “telecommunications” mean?

AG: In my case, it’s what you have to do to pay the bills after running a small, independent theatre company for eighteen months!
“Telecommunications” covers a multitude of sins, from the mundane to the top-secret. For my part, I was always involved in the ‘business’ side of the industry – dealing with companies and government departments rather than individuals and households. For the first dozen or so years I worked directly with clients such as banks, insurance companies and other agencies, and in the final phase of my career I was responsible for developing specialized management information packages for each of them. It was a truly crazy environment, so all in all, I found corporate life to be an excellent training ground for creating a fantasy world of my own…

JJ: What are you working on now?

AG: The second David Trevellyan thriller. Still in New York, still in danger, and still on the wrong side of the lines, can Trevellyan placate his bosses and find a way back into the fold? Or will the situation call for the kind of justice he can best dispense when he acts alone?

JJ: Any thoughts on going out on your first author tour? Have you heard any tips from anyone?

AG: I love the idea of going out on tour. After spending years presenting superficial details about a faceless corporation’s products and services, I can’t wait for the opportunity to talk in depth about something I care about so passionately. As for advice, I’ve been told to wear comfortable shoes and not to expect much sleep!

JJ: Where are you on research? Are you a hands on researcher or more of a Google guy?

AG: I like both. For straightforward facts – such as the location of a particular Magritte painting or the correct format for the social security numbers I used in EVEN – you really can’t beat the internet. On the other hand, I think that anything to do with atmosphere or emotion has to be experienced firsthand to be convincing.

So there you go, a quick interview with a great new author, now go forth and Buy EVEN by Andrew Grant

May 16, 2009

Hogdoggin' road rally

In the Last Episode, we ventured into the dark cold basement of The Nerd of Noir’s Bar, trying to coax him out and into the light.

The first clue may have been the Harleys outside. Harleys that didn’t belong to any of the other clubs that had been trickling in all that day. The second thing Lafitte noticed that wasn’t what he would’ve expected from an indie genre bookstore was the giant warehouse next door full of immense machinery, the sort you build bridges and airplanes with. Three stories tall, two stories wide, and greased up to take on any army.

The guy leaning against the wall beside the front door sipped more of his coal-black coffee and watched, warily it seemed, as Lafitte loped up to the Central Crime Zone. He wondered if the Nerd of Noir was getting all his books from these guys.

Lafitte nodded. Coffee Man nodded back.

“Your bikes?”

“The realization of my dreams, more like it.” Another sip. Coffee Man flicked his chin down towards where all the noise and smoke was coming from. “You with all that?”

Lafitte stared back down the road. Bikes lines the middle of the dusty road. Engine growls competed with heavy metal guitars. Luckily, he’d been able to head back to the Dive Bar and snag some chow before wandering off to the fringes again.

He answered, “More or less. Might if I take a look around?”

Coffee Man waved his free hand towards the door. “Mi casa, etc.” Then stuck it out for a shake. “Jon.”

Lafitte shook. “Billy.”

A gleam in Jon’s eye. Mischievous boy grin. “You ready to be surprised?”

Not that Lafitte was much of a reader, but the sheer height and breadth of the shelves was awe-inspiring.

Books. Comics. DVDs. Pulps. Posters. And an antique clawfoot tub full of the best beer selection he’d ever seen. It was like the Smithsonian of Genre. Left Lafitte slackjawed a moment. When he was outside, he just thought it was any old warehouse, but shit…

A woman sat behind the counter, watching him with raised eyebrows and a look on her face she’d read his tea leaves. Oh yeah, she had him pegged.

“Looking for something in particular?” She asked.
“He’s with the Rally. I think he rode in with the big guy, Ruth.”

Another woman cleared her throat several aisles down. Lafitte looked over. Sharp eyes under sharper bangs. She walked up to him, no fear, and grabbed his chin roughly, turned his head left and right like she was examining him. Then let go and took a step back.

“He’s spotty. I can’t a read on him.”

Lafitte thought he’d ended up in the Land of Oz all the sudden. “Can I just get some books? Some paperbacks?”

They all started talking at once.

Pretty soon Lafitte was shuffling through a pile they’d put together. Old stuff from Himes, Ball, and Whittington. New stuff from Guthrie, Azzarello, and Faust. More more more. A dude with a shaved head and a leather jacket snuck in some DVDs while no one was looking. Said to Lafitte, “Low budgets equal big imaginations. Check it out.”

Just as Lafitte was about to grab a couple and pay, some sort of alarm went off. Red strobe lights mounted on the ceiling came alive. The Central Crime team sprang into action, Jon stopped just a second to tell Lafite, “Sorry about this. Couldn’t have happened at a worse time.”

Lafitte watched as they all put on headsets and started talking, barking orders, things like, “Get the plane ready” and “International branches, roll call. This is not a drill.”

Several bookshelves rotated into the wall, revealing a giant monitor, satellite tracking station, and a shitload of military weapons--grenades, rocket launchers, assault rifles, .45s.

Jon and the one Lafitte assumed was his sister cowboyed up with ammo belts and double fisted AR-15s. The woman Jon called Ruth seemed to take charge of the main station, ordering minions around like a general.

And all Lafitte had wanted was something to read in the bathroom.

The whole team was geared to the max and ready to go. But right before they took off up the stairs that had somehow materialized up to the roof, where it sounded like a jet was waiting, Ruth stepped over to Lafitte and said, “Look, I wish I had time to explain, but…”

She snapped her fingers.

Lafitte was suddenly in the middle of the road outside of the Central Crime Zone Bookstore, a bag of 1960s paperbacks in his hand. Everything was a blur and he didn’t remember how he’d gotten here, where he was going, or what to do next. His mouth was dry and he really had to pee. All he knew is that something was tugging him back towards that bookstore. He had no idea what it was. But the CLOSED sign on the front door made him shrug and turn back towards the party, now in full swing even though the sun hadn’t even set on the horizon.

As he started walking, he heard and felt a sonic boom in his chest. Along with it came a reassuring feeling that everything would be just fine.


I can never say enough about my good friend Jon, Ruth, and Jennifer Jordan, plus everyone who works at Crimespree Magazine. They’ve been a pillar of support in my career for nearly ten years now, and their generosity knows no bounds (at least none I’ve seen so far). I’ve met almost as many writers in the crime fiction arena through these guys as I have through Plots with Guns, and that’s a crazy number. They’ve been the glue for our new community of crime writers, sometimes almost literary matchmakers in finding ways to have people work, read or sign together.

And don’t even get started about their HQ back in Milwaukee. Once you’ve been, you’ll want to go back just for that feeling of Hey, these people love books the same way I do. Like home away from home, if home is a cavernous warehouse kind of like an ancient castle.

Five years of Crimespree. Feels like it’s been longer. Like it’s always just been there. I hope it continues for many years into the future so that we may all at least once be able to contribute a recipe, or article of appreciation about our heroes, or an interview with a friend and fellow writer.

Plus they keep talking about this bookstore they want to open. I’m telling you, folks, live the dream. You know that place would be the epicenter of crime and comics in this country. Oh yeah. Forget either Coast. I’m talking Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Mark my words.

Keep up with them at Central Crime Zone (if you can).

I hope that Hogdoggin’ passes the motorcycle test, which is important to Jon, as a big Harley enthusiast. I can’t say that I did that world the most justice, but as far as the hyper-fast, hyper-dangerous world Lafitte inhabits, this is the motorcycle club he deserves. There’s just something dangerous but alluring about those bikes and the people who saddle up on them. Goddamn, aren’t they the most free sons of bitches?

See if you agree by getting yourself a copy of Hogdoggin’, either by ordering it on June 1st, HOGDOGGIN’ MONDAY, wherever you can, or by picking it up at one of the stores I’m stopping by on the book tour. We’re going to make some noise


You can hear him singing before you can even hear the whine of the motor on his man scooter. It’s an Irish drinking song, and he’s got his third bottle of tequila for the day in one fist. Oh yes.

On Stage Tonight: Early Man “Death is the Answer to My Prayers”

May 8, 2009

The Crimespree Awards

Award nominations

It’s that time of year when we ask our readers to nominate books and authors for the Annual Crimespree awards. We give the awards out at Bouchercon and this year that means Indianapolis.

You can nominate up to 5 in each category.
Books must have been published in 2008

Favorite book of 2008

Best in an ongoing series

Favorite Graphic Novel or comics writer

Favorite original Paperback (mass market or trade)

Favorite Mystery Bookstore

Voting is open to anyone.

Email your nominations to
Deadline for nominations will be July 31st 2009

May 7, 2009

Crimespree Magazine issue 30

Our five year anniversary issue, #30 will be dropping in the mail next week. There's lots of Crimespree goodness packed in this one.

Mark Billingham Interview
Top Ten Research List by Gregg Hurwitz
Fiction: DEAR DIARY by Jack Kilborn
Shooting the Dead by Blake Crouch
A Visit to Bath by Margot Justes
Near Disaster at an Ultra-Marathon Race by Jamie Freveletti
Cover Story JOHN CONNOLLY Interview by Jen Jordan
Ayo Onatade
The Jersey Boys by Jeff Cohen and Chris Grabenstein
Footprints: John Creasey by Ruth Jordan
Jack Kilborn Interview
Justin Shady interview
Getting Above it All by David Morrell
Michael Connelly Interview
Craig’s Joint
Crime and Idiocy presented by Jen Jordan
Dialogue with Declan
Fiction: On The Threshold of Death by Raymond Benson
Power of Fans by Seth Heywood
Reed Farrel Coleman
Spencer-Fleming for Hire
Sunshine and Crime by Michael Lister
Young Adult: Genre Crossing by Amy Alessio
Eye On Hollywood
DVD Reviews
Buzz Bin
Book Reviews
Crimespree on Comics
Jerry Ordway Interview
Cooking with Crimespree With Russell McLean

If you don't subscribe but would like to you can go to our website and hook up.
Crimespree Magazine

May 2, 2009

Greg Rucka Runs with Walk

From the author of Critical Space comes the April 28th release of Walking Dead.

Crimespree and Author Greg Rucka sat down for a chat on April Fool’s day to celebrate the release and catch up.

Crimespree: Thanks for one of our favorite reads of this spring
Greg: You’re welcome

C:And I appreciate the fact that you gave Alena and Kodiak at least three paragraphs of everyday existence before the shit hit the fan,
G.R: well you want to engage the reader; the happily ever after stuff is what fan fic is for:

Walking Dead opens with trouble not at the homestead but next store at the neighbors. Three are dead but it is the teenage girl, Tiasa, left alive and sold into slavery that propels the story. Kodiak must rescue her.

C:Walking Dead is very much a book about the global epidemic of human trafficking. What made you decide to attack this subject?

G.R.: Like everything through the news. I was watching an interview with E. Benjamin Skinner, author of A CRIME SO MONSTROUS FACE TO FACE WITH MODERN DAY SLAVERY and then read the book. It was one of the harder reads I’ve ever had. I did some more reading. I tend to write about things that make me angry. I was angry.

C:I did some research on human trafficking for this interview and was surprised to find that first response google was rather minimalistic, you need to go to the blogs.

G.R.: I’m looking at a website now ; 27,000,000 slaves currently in this world. Something I’m sure no one in the first world and undoubtedly no one in the third world wants. 27,000,000 ;imagine that. We grew up with the illusive myth of “white slavery”. It became rather fetishsized, a titillation . It’s slavery. These persons aren’t sexual prisoners. They’re slaves.

C:You took this “issue” and molded it to Atticus Kodiak’s world. I was surprised though, Alena (Kodiak’s partner) shrinking from the hunt and hopefully the rescue of this young woman she adored.

G.R.: Writing in the first person is tricky. You can only work with the information Atticus has had presented to him. Alena has always been very internal and she doesn’t give you much. Alena comes into the book with a dilemma of her own. There were times when I wanted to give it up, but I knew it wasn’t the right time. I’ve known these characters for a very long time now and they both remain very true to themselves throughout the novel.

C:The landscape of WALKING DEAD is global, from Eastern Europe to Amsterdam, to London, to New York and Dubai, to the Albertson’s around the corner, this evil is everywhere and Atticus goes where he needs to be. Did you research on the ground for the book or through research?

G.R.: Mainly research, a lot of research, unfortunately there was very little on the ground. Family is a priority

C:As it should be, certainly with results like these. Unlike many “series” even as reading this book I was thinking to myself, “This could totally be a first read”. How do you manage that as a writer? Is it a knowledge of your readership (precalculated) or because as you sit down to write an Atticus novel, your voice melds with his?

G.R.: Well I certainly don’t want to go into a book and make my characters do anything incomprehensible and this is the most linear Atticus book. There’s a starting gun and a finish line. And the return of a certain character.

C:I was pretty psyched to see the person too (There’s a scene in WALKING DEAD Rucka’s been waiting for years to write.).

G.R.:I’m glad and very happy I was able to do it.

C:Effectively. I love the scene where, argh…. We don’t want to spoil it.

WALKING DEAD is a page turner. A one night read that spans the globe and taxes the skills of two (or is it three) of mystery’s best characters. Can they save the child and will Kodiak and Alena ever be able to truly retire? WALKING DEAD takes the reader on a terrific ride through evil almost unbelievable and an atrocity that touches us all. There are shootouts and horrible danger. The story takes you through the slums of Amsterdam and the glittering lights of Dubai, surely opulence in the desert is an illusion? Dependent upon pumped in water and money looking the other way. For long time fans there are cherished moments as well as horrific instances.

Rucka had this to say about Atticus and contemporary slavery.

I wanted to show that there is no evil head to the problem of human trafficking, it is a systemic problem. While Kodiak might be successful in a particular, he’s really rather limited as to what he can do about an epidemic that finds new soldiers every time others go down, but he tries.

C: Are you writing another now?

G.R.:I’m actually working on a novel called THE LAST RUN. It’s a Tara Chace story. Once again I’m going with a much more linear timeline. It’s been rolling around in my head for awhile now and I’m happy to be writing it now. I feel that CRITICAL SPACE, PATRIOT GAMES & WALKING DEAD are a good trilogy. We’ll leave them be for now, let the readers enjoy the story arc. I’m quite happy with the beginning, middle and end. I’m not sure there’ll be another (Kodiak novel) but there may well be.

C:When will we see the next book?

G.R.:THE LAST RUN is due in the Bantam offices on Sept 1st which would give us a projected release date of Summer ’10; making a book a year!!

C:that’s what I want, a book a year, always.

G.R.:well, now that that’s cleared up…

C:I know that you’re really busy in the comic world as well, right now. You’re part of the Action Comics story arch , correct?

G.R.:I am doing my spin on Superman, yes and also Batwoman is coming out in June. We’ve been working on this for 2 years and it’s getting close.

C:Are you touring for WALKING DEAD?
G.R.:a bit, mainly west coast. San Francisco, Portland, Seattle and Poisoned Pen of course (look for dates on Greg’s website . ) I’ll be in San Diego for Comic Con as well but mainly working on the new book this summer.

C:Is there anything else you’d like to tell the Crimespree reader?

G.R.:Read the magazine. And Jon Jordan is Insane; off the wall. Ruth is the sane, good one.

C :There are folks who might disagree with you :)
Greg Rucka
April 28th, 2009
Bantam Books

Special Feature- Five For Summer

Turning Five is as we said remarkable. Turning five in this economy brilliant. This past week has been spent in New York City. The week was capped off by the annual Edgar Awards and Crimespree founders Ruth & Jon Jordan had a wonderful time.

The main part of the stay was a series of face to face meetings with various publishing houses. Least any of you are worried know that the enthusiasm of the editors and publicists we met with has not diminished even a tad. And it's given us an idea.

Exclusive to the web and as part of our birthday celebration we're going to interview 5 authors with books just out we don't feel should be missed by our fellow readers over the summer. We'll publish one a week for the next five weeks and help you pack for that summer vacation, enjoy that day in the lounge chair or even, snatch a few moments away from the daily grind....

Up first, Mr. Greg Rucka.