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3 items from 2012

Max Allan Collins (‘Road to Perdition’) on carrying on Mickey Spillane’s legacy

17 May 2012 4:15 AM, PDT | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

A week before he died in 2006, author Mickey Spillane turned to his wife and said, “When I’m gone, there’s going to be a treasure hunt around here. Take everything you find and give it to Max – he’ll know what to do.”

“Max” is Max Allan Collins. He was, for a number of reasons, an ideal choice to be the keeper of the Spillane flame.

A fan of Spillane’s since he’d been a kid, Collins had met the mystery writer at a convention in the early 1980s. The connection developed into both friendship and regular collaboration. But Collins was no junior partner in the duo.

Born in Muscatine, Iowa in 1948, he’s been writing mysteries since he was a kid, eventually studying in the Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa, one of the most renowned writing programs in the country.

By the late 1970s, »

- Bill Mesce

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Notes and queries: Who is the greatest fictional detective?

4 April 2012 4:05 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Plus: Is the air fresher in a forest? Why do men bother shaving?

Who is the greatest fictional detective? Holmes? Marlowe? Marple?

Philip Marlowe didn't solve all his crimes; his main business was doing what his clients wanted and getting beaten up occasionally. He never sorted out who killed the chauffeur in The Big Sleep (unsurprisingly, because Raymond Chandler, when asked, didn't know either). So it must be one of the other two, and I don't know whether to prefer Holmes because he did it with cocaine or Marple because she did it with knitting. Could we compromise on Father Brown?


For me, the greatest fictional detective is the virtually unknown Nigel Strangeways, created by Nicholas Blake (which was the pen name of poet laureate Cecil Day-Lewis). If you're into detective fiction I highly recommend checking him out (secondhand only, though, as just about all the books are out of print, »

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Notebook 4th Writers Poll: The Ferroni Brigade's Double Trouble Madness '11

5 January 2012 11:08 AM, PST | MUBI | See recent MUBI news »

Many—maybe too many, looking at this bunch of bone-tired warriors of Av-virtue—were the travels the Ferroni Brigade embarked on all through 2011: oftentimes for festivals all over Europe, sometimes for visits to this archive or that as part of our programming arbeit (to be read with a Japanese drawl). During those months in the dark, we saw a lot—some of which chimed and rhymed with new works we encountered in this multiplex back home or that gallery abroad, on this collector's Steenbeck or in that producer's private projection room (they still exist).

On one of those trips, we were joined by our main Mubi-man, His Kasness a.k.a. the Kasest with whom we plunged one evening into a brainstorming on what The Festival would look and feel like (truth be told: it was more like a communal delirium—but what do you expect from folks sitting »

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