My Bouchercon 2014 panels: Belfast Noir
Suffice it to say that Belfast Noir, out in November from Akashic Books, looks like one of the strongest, possibly the best entry in Akashic's "City Noir" series, and I don't say that just because the book's two editors plus one of its contributors will be part of a panel I'll moderate at Bouchercon 2014 in November.
The pieces are well-chosen and the volume intelligently planned. Its four sections recognize not just Belfast's violent recent past, but the realities of its quotidian present. Most of the stories depict no violence directly, but violence, and the possibility or memory thereof, loom always. That's a lot more effective than whipping out a kneecapping or rolling down the balaclavas whenever the action lags.
I especially like Brian McGilloway's "The Undertaking," which opens the collection with hair-raising humor and suspense. Akashic's Dublin Noir also opens with a comic story (by Eoin Colfer), and that story was the highlight of the volume for me. I don't know if it's an Irish thing, but comedy is a wonderful against-type way to open a collection of crime stories. Oh, and I'll also want to read more by Lucy Caldwell.
© Peter Rozovsky 2014