Supersized Smatterings

Deadlines are beat. The plate is clear for now. And to tell you the truth, I am rethinking the whole “link journalism” thing that blogs, especially litblogs, were built on the back of. For one thing, the brevity of Twitter allows links to be posted and news to be broken quickly with discussion – often at a very high idea-based level – to follow. Take yesterday’s news about the layoffs at Macmillan, which spread virus-like among a certain Twittering cohort searching out, posting and linking to the latest developments. (The upshot: FSG is taking a beating, and the children’s side will be consolidated, but most other imprints, such as Minotaur and Picador, came through okay.) I’m also finding that I recycle a number of links here that I’ve already posted there first. But on the other hand, most of those links are more to do with publishing as a whole. And I also know that the people who read this site use it as a primary destination and really, really like the link roundups.

So the conclusion I’ve reached for now is that Confessions has to evolve, but also stay within the same framework. It has to feature more long-form posts, essays and journalism. But when there are smatterings – usually out of vague panic that I should have something, anything, up here after too long an absence – they are going to stick close to crime fiction. Onward:

My newest Baltimore Sun column looks at new releases by Pablo de Santis, Ira Berkowitz and Karen Olson.

Marilyn Stasio’s latest NYT roundup features recent work by Mari Jungstedt, James Church, P.D. James and Elizabeth Ironside.

Oline Cogdill explains why Michael Koryta’s ENVY THE NIGHT is one of her best crime novels of the year.

At the Globe and Mail, Margaret Cannon has her say on mysteries and thrillers by Jeffery Deaver, Jo Walton, Sean Chercover, Anne Perry, Christine Barber, James Church, Mark Billingham and Donna Andrews.

Patrick Anderson examines Jonathan Kellerman’s place in the thriller world – not quite John Sanford, but somewhere in that ballpark.

Joan Smith’s Sunday Times crime column has an exotic flavor, while John Dugdale takes a broader viewpoint for his thriller roundup.

Laura Wilson’s Guardian roundup includes crime fiction by M.R. Hall, Patricia Cornwell, Neil Cross and Charlie Owen.

Toby Clements looks at historical thrillers by Robyn Young, Michael Cox, Bernard Cornwell and Valerio Massimo Manfredi for the Telegraph.

Dennis Lehane and Edwidge Danticat will edit BOSTON NOIR and HAITI NOIR, respectively, for Akashic.

Russell Atwood’s sequel to EAST OF A finally has a pub date – September 2009 – and a publisher, Hard Case Crime. And check out that sideways cover, it’s a beaut.

I’ve been remiss in reporting on the recent death of Australian poet Dorothy Porter, who lost her battle with breast cancer at the age of 54. Perry Middlemiss rounds up the pertinent links and tributes and now I have to track down copies of her crime novels-in-verse THE MONKEY’S MASK (1994) and EL DORADO (2007).

Listen to vintage pulp fiction at BBC 7. (via)

Dan Judson’s crime novels are the focus of a piece at the East Hampton Express.

P.D. James gets on the phone with Regis Behe to talk about THE PRIVATE PATIENT.

Much linked to already, but Mark Tavani’s thoughts on the current state of publishing are worth a read.

And finally, read about the White House Boys.