An Ozark state of mind

If there is one writer whose name noir aficionados want to shout from the rooftops over and over (and over) again because not enough people have heard of him, dammit, then Daniel Woodrell is probably tops. But thank the lord he’s getting some attention long overdue because of the impending publication of the fantastically phenomenal WINTER’S BONE (out in the UK from Sceptre next week and in the US from Little, Brown.)

One longtime fan is Welsh writer John Williams*, who got to spend time with Woodrell last fall as part of his research for the second edition of INTO THE BADLANDS, which Serpent’s Tail will be publishing in October (with the new title of BACK TO THE BADLANDS.)

The Independent excerpts parts of this interview and really, it’s all well worth a read. But most interesting is his take on the genre, since the novel that hews closely to conventions was his first, UNDER THE BRIGHT LIGHTS: “I just really like the verve and muscle of good crime fiction, the

narrative punch of it. The underlying principle of good crime fiction

is an insistence on a kind of root democracy. I’ve always responded to

that notion.”

Damn straight.

*And while we’re doing shameless plugging of author favorites of mine, check out the omnibus edition of Williams’ Cardiff trilogy (featuring 1999’s FIVE PUBS, TWO BARS AND A NIGHTCLUB, 2001’s CARDIFF DEAD and 2003’s THE PRINCE OF WALES) which will be available in stores in the UK in mid-July.