The last of my Christmas acquisitions, with a few odds and ends from used book sites that arrived in the last week.
1 & 2: Damn Near Dead and Damn Near Dead 2: two volumes of crime stories of what has been termed geezer noir. All protagonists are of the “senior” age. A host of great writers too numerous to list. One edited by Duane Swierczynski and two by Bill Crider.
3: Mr. Monk On The Road – Lee Goldberg; set after the series end, after having found his wife’s murderer, Adrian Monk is satisfied and wants to help his agoraphobic brother, Ambrose, find satisfaction. How to do that? He puts sleeping pills in his brother’s coffee and when Ambrose wakes, he’s on the road in a motor home. Naturally Natalie has come along as chauffeur and naturally the trio find a murder along the way.
4: The Border Jumpers – Will C. Brown: Link Jones had been a hard man in his younger days, though he’d left all that behind to settle down, live honestly, and raise a family. Passing through the area of his youthful indiscretions, a dance hall girl named Billie and he get involved with Doc Tobin and his gang. Tobin was his Uncle and as vicious a man as could be found. he didn’t like that his nephew had run off on way back then. And then there were his cousins…
5: The Tall Men – Clay Fisher: Brothers Ben and Clint Allison had left Texas after the war and headed to the Montana gold fields. There they meet a Yankee named Nathan Stark and an audacious plan is born. Return to Texas, buy cattle, and drive them back to Montana for premium prices, then split the profit.
6: Ghost Towns – edited by Martin Greenberg and Russell Davis: stories set against the backdrop of abandoned towns from a number of western masters.
7: The First Mountain Man: Preacher’s Assault: Preacher hires on to guide and protect a wagon train of trade goods going into the southwest. Against Indians and other predators.
8: The Devil’s Winchester _ Peter Brandvold: Lou Prophet was a bounty hunter. He’s accompanying Vengeance Queen, Louisa Bonventure in taking escaped killer Blanco Metalious back for his hanging. They find a young girl who claims a lost memory, but something doesn’t ring right about her. Then Sam “Man-Killing” Metalious comes to rescue his son.
9: Zombie Cop – Jeff Mariotte and Szymon Kudranski: Police officer Joe Mundy is a driven man. Affected by the zombie virus, he’s looking for a missing man. He knows his days as a functioning human are numbered. When the case connects to the cause of the zombie plague, it becomes even more important to find the man before time runs out. There’s also a prose novella by Mariotteset in the same city.
10: Grim Reaper: End of Days – Steve Alten: Patrick “Shep” Shepherd had been a promising rookie pitcher in the major leagues when 9-11 hit. He leaves his wife and child behind to join the military. It’s now eleven years later and Shep is in a military hospital, minus one arm, and having nightmares about war. Mary Klipot, a bio-hazard scientist, believing she’s doing God’s work, infects herself with a new form of the Black Death and enters Manhattan, infecting everyone she encounters. The island is sealed off to prevent spread. No one in, no one out. The President is even stuck there. Worse, Shep’s wife and daughter are in there and he’s going to find a way to go in and get them out.
11: Epitaph For A Tramp & Epitaph For A Dead Beat – David Markson: volume collects the two Harry Fannin detective novels. In the first, his ex-wife shows up at his office, knifed, dies in his arms, and he sets out to find her killer. In the second, two women are murdered, a father recently come into an inheritance, wants his daughter found, then is murdered himself. The three murders are all connected and Harry wants to find out why.
Set in New York City in the late fifties, harry moves among the “beat” generation of that era.
12: Bullet For A Half-Breed – Frank Leslie: Yakima Harry is half Cheyenne, half white and is used to disrespect. He won’t tolerate it shown to a young widow come to marry again. Her new husband is especially uncivil, making her life hell. Yakima steps in and adds to his own enemy list.
He has his own problems as well. His employer, a woman bitter to all men, is determined to ruin him. And she owns the law.