Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Houston Noir - Various Houston-Associated Writers

Houston Noir is one of the latest books in what has become a favorite series of mine, the Akashic Books noir short story collections.  My quick (and probably inaccurate) count of the titles already published comes to 100, with another dozen on the way. That serves as a reminder that even though I've read at least 15 of the books, I've barely scratched the surface of what the series has to offer fans of dark crime fiction.

In full disclosure, I need to say that I have lived in Houston for almost five decades, so this title is one I've really been looking forward to reading.  The fourteen stories are set in various Houston neighborhoods and suburbs (including the one I live in), and most of the stories do a very good job of capturing the unique atmospheres of each of the locations, something I both appreciated and enjoyed. 

As in most short story collections I've read, a few of the stories are particularly memorable and enjoyable. My personal favorites include "One in the Family" by Adrienne Perry, about a young woman who stalks her college financial aid advisor because of his callous attitude; "Where the Ends Meet" by Deborah D.E.E.P. Mouton, a story about horrific human trafficking; and "Happy Hunting" by Icess Fernandez Rojas, one about two vigilantes in search of a serial killer.

Houston Noir is fun, and it further confirms my love of the whole series. Give it a look - and you might be hooked, too.


  1. I was in Houston in 1980 to be a Godparent to our friends' baby. My strongest memory is that we went out to a bar with another friend, and it took him ages to find our friends' house in a subdivision (is that the right name?) because all the streets and houses looked alike. Were you affected by the floods a few years ago?

    1. Nan, Houston is indeed an easy place to get lost, no doubt about it. I've lived here since 1972 other than the nine years I spent in England and Algeria, and I still get lost sometimes downtown. And there are places you DO NOT want to get lost.

      We were lucky in that our house did not flood in the last tropical storm or in Hurricane Harvey. But there was flooding all around us (we were literally surrounded by flooded homes), and I think a whole lot of people are still dealing with that anxiety every time it rains hards for more than a few hours. We got over 50 inches of rain from Hurricane Harvey, so it seemed as if the whole city was going to either sink or float away.


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