Saturday, November 13, 2010

Patricia Abbott's Essential Noir Novels

Patti Abbott is a terrific writer of short stories-- her work has appeared at Thuglit, Hardluck Stories, Spinetingler, Thrilling Detective, and a bunch of others besides. She also lives in Detroit, so you know she's bad-ass. She runs one of the most fun blogs around at
Here's her choices for essential noir fiction; some nice surprises here:

They Shoot Horses, Don't They, Horace McCoy
Solomon's Vineyard, Jonathan Lattimer
Red Harvest, Dashiell Hammett
No Orchids for Miss Blandish, James Hadley Chase
The Day of the Locusts, Nathaniel West
The Bride Wore Black, Cornell Woolrich
The Postman Always Rings Twice, James Cain
A Kiss Before Dying, Ira Levin
1984, George Orwell
Pickup, Charles Willeford
Miami Purity, Vicki Hendricks
The Talented Mr. Ripley, Patricia Highsmith
In the Cut, Suzanne Moore
Waiting for Mr. Goodbar, Judith Rossner
Play It as It Lays, Joan Didion
The Golden Egg, Tim Krabbe
The Song is You, Megan Abbott
Revolutionary Road, Richard Yates
Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ighiguro
Autobiography of a Face, Ann Patchett and Lucy Grealy


  1. Nice one Patti. Stretching the idea of noir.

  2. Some pretty dark novels outside the box, I think. Hard to beat NEVER LET ME GO, or REVOLUTIONARY ROAD.

  3. Yeah, Day of the Locust and Play It As It Lays. Great stuff. Only thing about the Didion novel, when I re-read it this past July there was a lot more weeping than I remembered.

  4. Must confess, it's been many years but it was DARK.

  5. Glad to see Solomon's Vineyard up there! One of my favorites.