SERPENTS IN THE COLD paperback comes out tomorrow, May 24th.
Noir meets historical crime fiction in a dark tale of redemption during the worst winter on record.
Critics and authors praise SERPENTS IN THE COLD:
“Brutally realistic . . . The authors give us one last, lingering look at the good-bad old days.” Marilyn Stasio, New York Times
“This is a bone-crunching, gut-wrenching novel.” Kirkus Reviews
“Serpents in the Cold is a startling work of art, a beautifully rendered, atmospheric tale of crime and punishment set in mid-twentieth century Boston.” Reed Farrel Coleman, award-winning of Robert B. Parker’s Blind Spot
“[The authors] have delivered a love-letter to a Boston that’s long gone.” Publishers Weekly
“Serpents in the Cold lovingly revisits the hardboiled noir.” Stewart O’Nan, author of West of Sunset
“Serpents in the Cold is a great addition to the canon of gritty Boston street fiction, a no-punches-pulled look at a bygone era.” Chuck Hogan, author of The Town
“Melancholy as a lonesome train whistle, beautifully written, as well as thrilling, Serpents In The Cold is a tight little gem of characterization and suspense.” Joe Lansdale, author of The Thicket
“Purdy and O’Malley resurrect the neighborhoods of 1950s Boston in faithful, brutal detail — and in language so lush and gorgeous that you’ll fall in love with reading it all over again.” Elisabeth Elo, author of North of Boston
In one week, the paperback of ‘Serpents in the Cold’ comes out – 5/24/16. With a sweet new cover, I hope the novel pulls in some new readers. Noir is a term thrown around a lot these days, but Thomas O’Malley and I think our novel justifies the term (or at least we hope so).
Alan Glynn (author of Limitless) says, “There is a classic noir sensibility at work in Serpents in the Cold, complete with its uncannily rendered sense of time and place, but the novel is also suffused with a thoroughly modern understanding of loss, pain, damage and the price of loyalty. It’s not often you get to pair gritty with lyrical, but you certainly do here.”
We Were Kings (release: 6/21/16, Mulholland Books)
Book #2 in The Boston Saga
As a writer, when you’re at your lowest, it’s time to remember and re-read the writers you love and cherish and emulate. For me: Horror, Ramsey Campbell. For Science Fiction, Thomas Disch. For Fantasy, Lucius Shepard. For Crime, David Goodis. And all this peaks and sings true when you watch a clip of Ursula K. Le Guin talking about the importance of writing using only your imagination, plain and simple, because that’s all writers have.
My soundtrack to the novel, SERPENTS IN THE COLD, is a featured mix on 8tracks. Ninety minutes of cinematic scores, melancholic jazz, and Noir-inspired electronics. I think it makes a nice audio accompaniment to the wintry and bleak crime novel written by Thomas O’Malley and me.
(click on image for the link)
‘Serpents in the Cold’ is a crime novel about uncovering dark secrets and going against the odds for the sake of redemption. Two friends, Cal O’Brien and Dante Cooper, traverse the frozen landscape of Boston in the 1950s to solve a murder that runs a violent trail deep through the city and its many shadows.
Also check out the chain of other 8tracks mixes inspired by the novel. So many great sounds here, ranging all styles and tempos:
“The 1950s seems a familiar decade, nestled in a buoyant post-war economy that expanded the middle class and generated an avid consumer society. But before the Princess phones, Eldorado tailfins and backyard Weber grills, there was a short, but sharp, recession. By 1951, Boston was still struggling.
This is the year, and this is the town, of “Serpents in the Cold,” a skinned-knuckle mystery by co-authors Thomas O’Malley and Douglas Graham Purdy. In the best noir tradition, these co-authors shine a smoky light on lives often lived in shadows; in this case, the inhabitants who lived in Scollay Square and the West End of Boston, before it all disappeared under the developers’ wrecking ball…
A noir novel can be the high, slippery tightrope of mysteries. It’s difficult to sustain a dark, moody balance; many writers slide right off into caricature. But O’Malley and Purdy let in just enough daylight – even if it’s harsh winter light – to hold out hope of redemption.”
The crime novel SERPENTS IN THE COLD (Mulholland Books) is available now on Amazon Kindle. It may just be the perfect book for this unforgiving Winter weather. Curl up with some tea, or better yet, a neat whiskey, and travel back to February, 1951, Boston. Chuck Hogan, author of the bestselling The Town, calls it “a great addition to the canon of gritty Boston street fiction, a no-punches-pulled look at a bygone era.”
(hardcover, ebook & audiobook released on January 20th, 2015)