Tuesday, September 4, 2007

For excellent fiction: SOHO Press and Powell's Bookstore

1. SOHO press and SOHO crime. This publisher has a remarkable ability to find brilliant writers, including crime writers, from around the world. With settings in Australia, New Zealand, Paris, Italy, Alaska, China, Japan and other places, the books can step far out of the standard police procedural or mystery patterns, but even if they don't, they step far out of most people's comfort zones both culturally and geographically (no matter where you live). This adds much to enjoy. Many bookstores don't carry SOHO, or only have a few volumes available. Hence, the importance of the next point:

2. Powell's Books is acknowledged by many as one of the best bookstores in the world, if not THE best. Check out their top 10 lists in Crime Fiction and Featured Books.

Here is my own list of recommended crime and mystery novels available at Powell's. I have read, and endorse, them all. This is just a start- there will be many more books added. I put in several links to Charlotte Jay's "Beat Not the Bones", winner of the very first Edgar Award, because it is a bit scarce, and I didn't want to send you to a sold-out version. I'll be writing reviews of all of the books on my list when I can. I strongly recommend reading Cara Black's books in order they were published. I'm still reading "The Woman Who married a Bear" by John Straley, but the early reviews are strong.

Powell's supports the Green Press Initiative (see here for the organization's main site). Having worked in Green Chemistry, I know first hand that publishing and the paper industry are certainly areas that can benefit from environmentally-aware innovation.

Acknowledgments: I would like to thank my brother John and my good friend John F. of St. Louis for introducing me to most of the authors and books on my current crime fiction list. They have also introduced me to many books that will make their way into the other fiction lists I will be putting together. I had thought that this acknowledgment would show up on the list itself, but I must have misunderstood, so here it is.

Here you can search Powell's Bookstore for anything:

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