The Bitch, a crime novel by Noir Nation editor Les Edgerton, made it to Paul D. Brazil’s much coveted BEST CRIME NOVELS of 2011. A great way to end the year.
The Bitch explores the dark choices that Jake, as a two-time offender faces to save both his life and his soul—life imprisonment if caught for the third time under the federal ha-bitch-ual criminal law—known to outlaws as “The Bitch.” Choices that may cost him everything and everyone he loves. What are the limits of loyalty? What is the spiritual process by which a savvy hair
designer deteriorates into a mass murderer? A work in the cold existentialist tradition of Sartre and Camus, and the transgressive fiction of Celine, The Bitch struggles for answers and, on finding them, a way out.
I’m writing this in a plain office in the corner of a building that was described by the realtor as “exclusive,” though it doesn’t exclude despondent ultra-Orthodox Jews panhandling for cash, plumbers who break all the pipes you hadn’t called them to fix, or the cheerful lady who lets her dog pee in the elevator. There’s the hum of heavy traffic from the road below and a view across the valley of brake lights on a highway where no one ever seems to move. The air is clear enough up here that I usually only smell me, sweating through the desert heat, except when the garbage truck empties the trashcans and sends up a rotten fruit ripeness, or when the khamsin blows and I can smell the dirt on the hot wind. There’s a mosquito in here, but the bastard isn’t friendly enough to show himself. When he does, I’ll do what people in the Middle East do best. There are already spots of my blood across the whitewash where his brothers and sisters felt the thick side of my fist.
Our sister publication Bare Knuckles Press is creating a wallpaper with portraits of the great writers who wrote in the style and spirit Bare Knuckles wants to pursue. Did we miss some, were we too generous with others? Who should go, who should stay? Let us know.
Zora Neale Hurston
Charlotte Perkins Gilman
F. Scott Fitzgerald