Chicago Noir Event
Friday September 2nd 7PM
with Marlon James (John Crow’s Devil), Neal Pollack (editor of Chicago Noir),
and Joe Meno (How the Hula Girl Sings).
CHICAGO NOIR, edited by Neal Pollack
On the heels of the stunning success of the summer ’04 award-winning
bestseller Brooklyn Noir, Akashic Books launches a groundbreaking series of original
noir anthologies. Each book is comprised of all-new stories, each one set in a
distinct neighborhood or location within the city of the book. Now: Chicago
Brand new stories by: Neal Pollack, Achy Obejas, Alexai Galaviz-Budziszewski,
Adam Langer, Joe Meno, Peter Orner, Kevin Guilfoile, Bayo Ojikutu, Jeff
Allen, Luciano Guerriero, Claire Zulkey, Andrew Ervin, M.K. Meyers, Todd Dills,
C.J. Sullivan, Daniel Buckman, Amy Sayre-Roberts, and Jim Arndorfer.
Chicago Noir is populated by hired killers and jazzmen, drunks and dreamers,
corrupt cops and ticket scalpers and junkies. It’s the Chicago that the
Department of Tourism doesn’t want you to see, a place where hard cases face their
sad fates, and pay for their sins in blood. These are stories about blocks that
visitors are afraid to walk. They tell of a Chicago beyond Oprah, Michael
Jordan, and deep-dish pizza. This isn’t someone’s dream of Chicago. It’s not even
a nightmare. It’s just the real city, unfiltered. Chicago Noir.
NEAL POLLACK worked as a reporter for the Chicago Reader from 1993-2000,
where he wrote the “Petty Crime” column, among many other assignments. He’s the
author of three books of satire, including the cult classic The Neal Pollack
Anthology of American Literature and the rock-n-roll novel Never Mind the
Pollacks. His short fiction has appeared in several anthologies and magazines, and
he?s a regular contributor to Vanity Fair and Nerve.
HOW THE HULA GIRL SINGS By Joe Meno
Paperback reissue of the second novel from the author of the smash hit
HAIRSTYLES OF THE DAMNED.
A young ex-con in a small Illinois town. A lonely giant with a haunted past.
A beautiful girl with a troubled heart. Strange and darkly magical, How the
Hula Girl Sings begins exactly where most pulp fiction usually ends, with the
vivid episode of the terrible crime itself. Three years later, Luce Lemay, out
on parole for the awful tragedy, does his best to finds hope: in a new job at
the local Gas-N-Go; in his companion and fellow ex-con, Junior Breen, who
spells out puzzling messages to the unquiet ghosts of his past; and finally, in the
arms of the lovely but reckless Charlene. How the Hula Girl Sings is a
suspenseful exploration of a country bright with the far-off stars of forgiveness,
but still dark with the still-looming shadow of the death penalty.
JOE MENO is a fiction writer from Chicago and winner of a Nelson Algren
Literary Award. His latest best-selling novel, Hairstyles of the Damned, a
selection of the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Program, follows the
exploits of adolescents as they struggle for belonging on Chicago’s south side. He
is a professor of creative writing at Columbia College, Chicago, the cofounder
of Sleepwalk magazine, coeditor of Bail magazine, and a columnist for Punk
JOHN CROW’S DEVIL
a debut novel by Marlon James
THIS STUNNING DEBUT NOVEL tells the story of a biblical struggle in a remote
Jamaican village in 1957. With language as taut as classic works by Cormac
McCarthy, and a richness reminiscent of early Toni Morrison, Marlon James reveals
his unique narrative command that will firmly establish his place as one of
today’s freshest, most talented young writers.
IN THE VILLAGE OF GIBBEAH — where certain women fly and certain men protect
secrets with their lives — magic coexists with religion, and good and evil
are never as they seem. In this town, a battle is fought between two men of God.
The story begins when a drunkard named Hector Bligh (the “Rum Preacher”) is
dragged from his pulpit by a man calling himself “Apostle” York. Handsome and
brash, York demands a fire-and-brimstone church, but sets in motion a
phenomenal and deadly struggle for the soul of Gibbeah itself. John Crow’s Devil is a
novel about religious mania, redemption, sexual obsession, and the eternal
struggle inside all of us between the righteous and the wicked.
MARLON JAMES was born in Kingston, Jamaica in 1970. He graduated from the
University of the West Indies in 1991 with a degree in Literature. An
award-winning artist and writer, this is his first novel. He lives in Kingston.