"The Criminal Kind: Bardsley, Piccirilli, and Woods" at The Los Angeles Review of Books

Over at the Los Angeles Review of Books, my Criminal Kind column continues with reviews of Greg Bardsley's Cash Out, Tom Piccirilli's The Last Kind Words, and Jonathan Woods' A Death in Mexico.

Read the full article here.

Fulfilling all of the promise of Bardsley’s short story “Crazy Larry Smell Bacon” ... Cash Out marks an exciting new entry into the mystery field. Flat-out funny prose that doesn’t resort to parody is a rarity. Bardsley’s clarity and eccentricity should be treasured. Here’s hoping that a follow-up novel isn’t too far around the corner.

If Shadow Season was a turning point for Piccirilli — signaling a maturation of theme and style — then The Last Kind Words marks the start of a major new period in Piccirilli’s oeuvre, and it stands among his finest and most moving works to date.

Jonathan Woods’s debut novel, A Death in Mexico, [is] an outrageous and unruly mescal-soaked murder mystery packed with plenty of euphoric and hallucinogenic highs and none of the regrettable aftereffects. Readers looking for a by-the-books police procedural won’t find anything so straight-laced or conservative in this book; adventurous readers — those willing to drink without first asking what’s in the glass — will savor Woods’s unorthodox mélange of sex and slaughter under the sun.

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