Milwaukee Noir

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Pub Date: 05/07/2019

Pages: 256

Trim: 5 x 8

Publisher: Akashic Books

Imprint: Akashic Books

ISBN 13: 9781617757013

ISBN 10: 1617757012

Price: $15.95 / $20.99 CAN

Category: FICTION / Mystery & Detective / Collections & Anthologies

Milwaukee Noir

By Tim Hennessy, Shauna Singh Baldwin, James E. Causey, Christi Clancy, Reed Farrel Cowleman, Vida Cross, Jane Hamilton, Derrick Harriell, Valerie Laken, Jennifer Morales, Nick Petrie, Matthew J. Prigge, Mary Thorson, Larry Watson, Frank Wheeler Jr.

Price: $15.95



About the Book

Boswell Book Company's #2 Paperback Fiction Bestseller for the week ending May 4, 2019!

"Luxuriate in the seedy, wallow in the angry and shiver at the horrors that surely await you around the corner...The sheer localness of Milwaukee Noir is superb, and the seediness of many characters here would qualify them for membership in a Tom Waits song."
--Milwuakee Journal Sentinel

"In Milwaukee Noir, among the latest titles in Akashic Books' Noir series, 14 writers who've lived here offer a sinister tour of Brew City's radically diverse neighborhoods...Many of these effectively not only as atmospheric fiction but also as influential social commentary."
--Shepherd Express

"Akashic's distinctive series of crime fiction anthologies arrives in Brewtown. The fourteen contributors include familiar Wisconsin writers Valerie Laken, Jennifer Morales, Jane Hamilton, Larry Watson, Nick Petrie and my Journal Sentinel colleague James E. Causey. Like other volumes in this series, Milwaukee Noir foregrounds specific locations: for example, Watson's story has a Yankee Hill setting, and Morales' is set in the Silver City neighborhood."
--Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal

"Noir exposes the underbelly of a place. In film or fiction, characters live in the shadows, denizens of a night where every good intention is punished. Noir found its natural home in New York City and LA in the 1940s and '50s. Now, Milwaukee can lay claim to its own piece of the genre."
--Lake Effect (WUWM 89.7 FM, Milwaukee)

"Each story is tied to a particular neighborhood in Milwaukee. While the stories in the collection sometimes cross paths with famous city locations (one story opens with the protagonist falling in love at Summerfest), most of the others walk streets that the average tourist won't see."
--Capital Times

"In a new short story collection, writers from around Milwaukee dig into the gritty side of life in the city."
--Central Time (Wisconsin Public Radio)

Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city.

Brand-new stories from: Jane Hamilton, Reed Farrel Coleman, Valerie Laken, Matthew J. Prigge, Shauna Singh Baldwin, Vida Cross, Larry Watson, Frank Wheeler Jr., Derrick Harriell, Christi Clancy, James E. Causey, Mary Thorson, Nick Petrie, and Jennifer Morales.

From the introduction by Tim Hennessy:

Presently, Milwaukee is going through a renaissance--abandoned factories being converted to condos, craft breweries and distilleries pushing out corner taverns--yet at the same time it is among the most segregated and impoverished big cities in the country. The gentrification of neighborhoods outside of downtown bear the impact of twentieth-century redlining efforts, forcing residents out due to housing demand, adding fuel to the affordable-housing crisis. Such an environment and atmosphere make excellent fodder for noir fiction...

The book you're holding is the first of its kind--a short fiction collection about Milwaukee, by writers who've experienced life here. The crime/noir genre at its best can be one of the purest forms of social commentary. I've gathered contributors who can tell not just a fine story, but who can write about the struggles and resilience of the people who live here...I'm honored to compile a body of work that represents what I love, and fear, about Milwaukee. I love my city's lack of pretension; its stubbornness and pride in the unpolished corners. I fear that my city faces an uncertain future--that as it becomes more divided it may pushes our best and brightest to find somewhere else to shine.

About the Book

In Milwaukee Noir, a city of manufacturers and booze, as well as a growing immigrant community, makes perfect grist for the Noir Series mill.


Tim Hennessy is a bookseller and writer who lives in Milwaukee with his wife and son. His work has appeared in Midwestern Gothic, Tough, Crimespree Magazine, and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, among other places.Shauna Singh Baldwin is a novelist, playwright, and short story writer. Her awards include the Writers' Union of Canada Prize, the CBC Literary Prize, the Friends of American Writers Prize, the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best Book (Canada and the Caribbean), and a short-listing for the Giller Prize. Her seventh book is Reluctant Rebellions. Baldwin received her MBA from Marquette University, and an MFA from the University of British Columbia.James E. Causey is an award-winning columnist and special projects reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He received his BA in communications from Marquette University in Milwaukee, and his MBA from Cardinal Stritch University in Fox Point, Wisconsin. Causey was also a 2007–08 Neiman Fellow at Harvard University. He is married and has one daughter.Christi Clancy grew up in Whitefish Bay and now lives in Madison, Wisconsin, where her yard is woolly, wild, and pesticide-free. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Sun Magazine, and in Glimmer Train Stories, Hobart, Pleiades, Midwestern Gothic, and elsewhere. She teaches English at Beloit College.Reed Farrel Coleman is the New York Times best-selling author of twenty-eight novels including stand-alones and those in his Moe Prager and Gus Murphy series. He is also the current author of Robert B. Parker's Jesse Stone novels. He is a four-time recipient of the Shamus Award and a four-time Edgar Award nominee. He is currently writing the prequel novel to director Michael Mann's movie Heat.Vida Cross's book of poetry Bronzeville at Night: 1949 was published in 2017. She is a Cave Canem fellow, a 2018 Pushcart Prize nominee, a graduate of the School of the Art Institute's MFAW program, and a Chicago native who teaches and resides in Milwaukee. Her work has appeared in a number of anthologies including Creativity & Constraint, 1963–2013: A Civil Rights Retrospective, TAB: The Journal of Poetry & Poetics, Cave Canem Anthology XII: 2008–2009, and the Journal of Film and Video.Jane Hamilton's novels have won literary prizes, been made into films, have been international best sellers, and two of them, The Book of Ruth and A Map of the World, were selections of Oprah's Book Club. Her nonfiction has appeared in various magazines and anthologies. She's married to an apple farmer in Wisconsin, and has a relative who lives in an Abbot Row house in Milwaukee.Derrick Harriell is the director of the creative writing MFA program and associate professor of English and African American Studies at the University of Mississippi. He is the author of three collections of poetry: Cotton, Ropes, and Stripper in Wonderland. His essays and book reviews have been published widely.Valerie Laken is the author of the novel Dream House and the story collection Separate Kingdoms. She teaches creative writing at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, and at Pacific University's low-residency MFA program.Jennifer Morales is a poet, fiction writer, and performance artist based in rural Wisconsin. She lived in Milwaukee, including a stint in the Silver City neighborhood, for twenty-three years, and served as the city's first elected Latinx school board member. Her short story collection Meet Me Halfway: Milwaukee Stories was the Wisconsin Center for the Book's 2016 "Book of the Year." She serves on the board of the Driftless Writing Center.Nick Petrie's first novel, The Drifter, won the 2016 Thriller Award, the 2016 Barry Award for Best First Novel, and was nominated for Edgar and Anthony awards, as well as the Hammett Prize. He was named one of Apple's "10 Writers to Read" in 2017. His Peter Ash novels include The Drifter, Burning Bright, Light It Up, and Tear It Down. A husband and father, he lives in Milwaukee.Matthew J. Prigge is a writer and historian. He is the author of three books, with a fourth due out in 2019. His book Outlaws, Rebels, & Vixens: Motion Picture Censorship in Milwaukee, 1914–1971 won the Milwaukee County Historical Society's Gambrinus Prize for best local history book of 2016. He lives on Milwaukee's East Side with his wife Erika and their three rats, Mavis, Penguin, and Pinecone.Mary Thorson was born and raised in Milwaukee. She received her BA in creative writing from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and her MFA from Pacific University. She has been published in various literary journals and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She lives in Shorewood with her husband, daughter, and loud dog.Larry Watson is the author of Montana 1948, Orchard, Let Him Go, As Good As Gone, and other novels, as well the story collection Justice. His short stories and poems have appeared in Gettysburg Review, New England Review, North American Review, Mississippi Review, and other literary magazines. His essays and book reviews have been published in the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Sun-Times, the Washington Post, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and elsewhere.Frank Wheeler Jr. is the author of The Wowzer and The Good Life, which was published in France as L'ordre des choses. He is a graduate of both a police academy and a master's program in English. He works as a global security analyst and lives in Wisconsin with his wife Marie.