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No. 1000

1000

Man, I’m really excited about this. Gravesend is coming out in France on March 30th from Rivages (translated by Simon Baril, who has also translated Peter Temple and Marilynne Robinson). They’ve chosen it to be #1,000 in their noir collection, which coincides with their 30th anniversary. #1 was Jim Thompson’s Recoil. #100 was James Ellroy’s The Black Dahlia. I’m honored beyond words. I’ll be in Paris for the release and Lyon for Quais du polar right after. I’m really not sure what to say. This is the best thing that’s ever happened to me as a writer and one of the things I dreamed about right after Eamon was born when I was plugging away on Gravesend in the mornings before work and in whatever little spare time I had.

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Pillar of Fire

On December 16, 1960, two commercial airliners crashed over NYC. My stepdad was a student at St. Augustine’s, a school in Brooklyn right near where one of the planes came down. I grew up hearing about the crash and got to be pretty obsessed with it, reading old newspapers and searching out images. Here’s a story I wrote about it, one that I’ve been working on for a few years now.

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Bound to Collapse

Dead End Follies made a list of “10 New Generation Genre Writers You Need to Read,” and I’m honored as hell to be included.

Thanks to Benoit for these kind words about my work:

“Boyle is a bit of a classicist who can harness the beauty of hardboiled and literary fiction both. His characters are complex, layered and tormented. They are built like rows of majestic buildings bound to collapse in an inevitable natural disaster.”

 

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Update

Man. Shit. I haven’t updated this site in a long time. Have a bunch of stuff I’ve been wanting to post here since March; I hope I remember it all. A couple of other things first: I’m reading at TurnRow Books in Greenwood, MS before a presentation of David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross on 8/13 at 6:45 p.m. I’ll also be on the Short Stories Panel at the Mississippi Book Festival in Jackson, MS on 8/22.

1. Back in March, my second book, a short story collection called Death Don’t Have No Mercy, came out. Megan Abbott, hero and pal, had these kind things to say about it:

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2. I did the Book Talk podcast with Stephen Usery in Memphis. Listen here.

3. David Bowles said some swell things about Death Don’t Have No Mercy and Broken River Books over at The Monitor. He thought the stories were “evocative of James Cain,” which means a hell of a lot to me.

4. Rob Hart, who just put out a terrific debut novel called New Yorked, made a list of Five Great Books About New York City and included Gravesend. It lifted my heart to see my book up there on The Daily Beast with books by some of my heroes.

5. For a minute there, back at the end of April, I somehow had the top-selling book in Mississippi according to The Clarion-Ledger. I’m not sure how it’s even possible, but it’s the only time I’ll ever see my name at the top of a list like this, so I’ll take it.

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6. Here’s Death Don’t Have No Mercy on Jack Pendarvis’s recommendation shelf at Square Books.

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7. Noir at the Bar Oxford 2 was a big success. Seems like a long damn time ago already. I have some photos from the event, more than last time anyway. I won’t post them here, but they’re on my Instagram if you want to check them out. Great night.

8. Some kind words about Gravesend from Philip David Alexander, author of Peacefield, over at Goodreads: “This is a dark gem of a book that will more than satisfy fans of David Goodis, George V. Higgins, Richard Price and Daniel Woodrell.” Full review here.

9. I was home in Brooklyn for a couple of weeks and took a lot of pictures. Most are up on my Instagram page. Here are a couple I didn’t post there. This train platform is the D station at 25th Avenue in my neighborhood, where the last scene in Gravesend takes place.

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10. Here’s a picture of me, Tom Franklin, and Ace Atkins celebrating the publication of Ace’s great new Quinn Colson novel, The Redeemers, on the balcony at City Grocery last week. Pick up a signed copy here. Photo credit: Milly Moorhead West.

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Tonight!/Reviews

Noir at the Bar Oxford II. Tonight at Proud Larry’s. 9 p.m.

n@b pl

Also, here’s a review of Death Don’t Have No Mercy in the New Orleans Review.

And thanks to Scott Adlerberg for this review on Goodreads: “A marvelous collection of eight stories about men who drink too much, have damaged souls, and whose lives, for all purposes, may already be over. None of the main characters is all that old – we’re talking about men in their twenties and early thirties – but already they’ve made a lot of bad choices and continue to make bad choices. Still, you’ll be hard-pressed to encounter more entertaining, compelling fiction about sad people than the fiction you’ll find here. Boyle has a style of elegant simplicity that makes for compulsive reading, and his way of evoking place, Brooklyn around Coney Island, upstate New York, a hotel room in Montreal, is impeccable. Environment almost is a separate character in these stories. I could have read eight more of these beautifully told tales and look forward to what William Boyle will do next.”

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