Brash Blog

Big Ideas and Big Names in suspense from Brash Books

Get the big ideas from the biggest names in suspense on the Brash Books blog. Here, you'll find posts by some of your favorite mystery authors sharing their views on crime fiction - along with inside stories about everything from how they wrote their bestselling thrillers to what inspires them.

You'll also hear from experts in the mystery and suspense genre, along with fans, publishing insiders, and of course, Brash Books. Posts will range from informative to controversial - but you can bet every one will be a compelling read. This is your destination to explore great crime fiction writing - past, present and future - from the authors, readers, and publishers who keep it alive.

Jimmy Sangster was an amazing writer.  He was one of the best screenwriters for Hammer's horror movies, and he was all over U.S. TV in the '70s (check out his IMDb entry).  He also wrote novels, several of which I read and enjoyed, including two about a spy named Katy Touchfeather. When Touchfeather's boyfriend is killed, it's revealed to her by the head of a super-secret British spy agency that he was murdered.  She's offered a chance to work for the same agency, as she already has the perfect cover, as she's a stewardess ('60s parlance).  Aftr attending spy school, she'll be able to work for any airline at any time and fly over the world on assignment. The big... more

Read More of Getting in Touch with Touchfeather

This past weekend was busy and way too much fun. I made two appearances to promote my novel, Double Wide, and both went extremely well. The first, on Saturday, was at Clues Unlimited, a well-known mystery bookshop in Tucson. It has a certain charm, obvious as soon as you step inside and meet the store’s mascot, Bosco, a retired Greyhound racing dog. I had a couple of Milk Bones in my pocket. I have pooches of my own and usually carry treats. My wife, Teresa, thinks I’m nutso about dogs. Doesn’t everyone carry Milk Bones?  The store is cozy and we had a good crowd, so owner Chris Burke moved us next door into a church. Double Wide was excerpted in the Tucson Weekly -- along... more

Read More of Leo Banks takes his “Double Wide” On the Road

The new Brash Books edition of Road to Paradise is out, and if you’re a fan of the trilogy – particularly if you’ve never read my complete version of the Road to Perdition movie novel – I hope you’ll support me and Brash in this fine effort, and buy all three. Brash did a lovely job packaging the books, which look very nice on a shelf together. Some readers seem flummoxed by the O’Sullivan saga. It starts as a graphic novel (Road to Perdition), becomes a movie of that novel generating a novelization of the screenplay (with me doing a novel based on a screenplay based on my graphic novel), followed by a sort of prequel graphic novel (Road to Perdition 2: On the Road) published... more

Read More of Max Allan Collins: On the Road to Paradise

Brash Books will publish my first novel, Double Wide, on Nov 1. I wrote the first version of it in the 1980s. What are we looking at here, more than three decades? Sounds about right.   The idea originated on a bus in Mexico. I was a young newspaper reporter looking for a good story. I was single, had vacation time coming and didn't fancy sitting on a beach in some alleged paradise. A friend who used to pitch in the AAA Mexican League described what it was like to play baseball south of the border, the wild times, the characters he'd shared the field with.   It sounded good. He gave me the name of a guy with the... more

Read More of Leo Banks: The Story Behind DOUBLE WIDE

Barb and I have always made shopping a big part of our recreation, particularly when we go off on a day trip to the Chicago suburbs or Des Moines. I now realize – looking back on the book-, record- and video stores I have frequented – that we experienced a kind of Golden Age of shopping. It says something that my favorite shop of all time was a laser disc outlet. I would spend about three hours there. On Father's Day, we celebrated "my day" and Barb’s birthday with a Des Moines trip – actually, we mostly go to Clive. There’s a fine Half-Price Books on offer – the place where all my enthusiasms have gone to die – and a big, well-stocked Barnes & Noble. I shop at Barnes... more

Read More of Max Allan Collins: Support Your Local Bookseller…And Amazon, Too.

HBO/Cinemax has officially cancelled the Quarry series, but this comes as no surprise. A shake-up at the network, as well as a conflict between the star (who is committed to another series pilot) and the director of all eight episodes, spelled it out long ago. What’s most disappointing to me is that my script for season two will not be produced, and I was really happy with it. We had thought some other network might pick the show up, but that now seems unlikely. I am happy to have had a quality show that gave my Quarry books a higher profile. My hitman has now generated an award-winning short film, a festival-winning feature, and now a first-rate series, and my writing was a part of... more

Read More of Max Allan Collins: A Cancellation and a Nomination