Recently Acquired Books: A Fifth of Bruen and David Goodis

Here I am posting about two print (!) books added to my library shelf. This is a rare, rare thing readers. I am a digital only reader except in circumstances where I want to read something and it’s available in anything but digital. I figure it’s worth it.

Author: Ken Bruen. Title: A Fifth of Bruen. Cover shows a partial view of a man's hand with a lit cigarette with a bottle of whisky First up is the 352 page novel marketed as the early fiction of Ken Bruen, A Fifth of Bruen. Published by Busted Flush Press in 2006, I took the plunge and ordered a used copy. What I received was a library copy, stamped from the Jackson Township Branch’s Ocean County Library in New Jersey in good condition with the words “discard” stamped on the bottom pages. The stories in this edition are: Funeral: Tales of the Irish Morbidities (1991), Martyrs (1994), Shades of Grace (1993), Sherry and Other Stories (1994), All the Old Songs and Nothing to Lose (1994) and last, The Time of Serena-May and Upon the Third Cross (1994).

Next up is David Goodis (1917 to 1967).  He’s an author I’ve heard about but never gave much thought to. Goodis is said to epitomize noir crime fiction. I broke down and bought Shoot the Piano Player which was actually titled as Down There in 1956 and inspired the French film by François Truffaut. I have Ken Bruen to thank. Writer Bill Crider did an interview with Ken Bruen at Bouchercon in 2006 and all Ken Bruen says is Goodis (ok for the first two questions). So, naturally, my curiosity is piqued. Just what is so good about David Goodis? I shall find out soon. The full Ken Bruen interview is below.  Have a good weekend.

10 thoughts on “Recently Acquired Books: A Fifth of Bruen and David Goodis”

  1. Keishon, I’m kind of funny in that I prefer actual books to digital, but I’m an old dinosaur. I got a kindle for my birthday, so I kind of entering the 21st C. now. I’ll see what my preference is in a year’s time. I have been reading off my pc for a while though, so it’s not a big issue for me.

    I had the Bruen book and passed it on a few years ago and can’t remember a damn thing about the books within the book. I kind of wish I kept hold of it.

    I did used to have another blog before C’sCL called Crime Cut Celt a few years ago, but in a moment of madness I deleted it. I did a Q+ A session with Ken where I asked him among others things what his favourite vegetable was. A = brocolli. I thought why ask all the usual questions about books, just be a bit random? He was very polite and humoured me!

    1. Hi Col! Thanks for sharing your Ken Bruen story. That’s great. Good to be different/random as that can always lead to some surprises. I will still read print but I just prefer digital. I’d be curious to know after a year’s time what your thoughts on digital. I can’t read on my laptop. I’m just built that way. I’m actually using a tablet (Nexus 7) and love it but eye strain is a potential problem for some users. I adjusted the lighting and that made a big difference.

  2. Keishon – So glad you found these. I do both digital and print books, and love ‘em both. But I know what you mean about the advantages of digital reading. And it’s good to hear from Col’s post that K.B. is a decent person as well as being a talented writer. Reminding me that I need to spotlight one of his books!

    1. That would be awesome Margot, if you could do a spotlight on Ken Bruen. I’m not sure if you’ve read his Brant series or his Jack Taylor series but either one would be a great introduction to his work.

      1. Back again. I got to watch the Ken Bruen video and loved it. Also, I checked and the one Goodis book I have is the same one you got. I want to find Dark Passage, but every version I find is not cheap. Someday. Maybe soon.

  3. Keishon, I vacillate between physical books and ebooks, the latter on a tablet that gives me the option of reading in various formats including Kindle, pdf, epub, doc, and txt. I read the classics and other heavy books (in number of pages) only in their physical form.

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