What Happens in Reno is a Happening Book

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Someone really needs to tell me what the hell is in the water at All Due Respect Books! Every book they publish kicks ass and this book shows that not only do they publish kick ass books, the publishers write them too!

What Happens in Reno by Mike Monson is classic noir. A main character that has plans of grandeur but is destined for disaster, a dame with no allegiances other than to herself, a criminal recently released from prison, and a financial windfall that everyone wants to get their hands on.

When Matt gets money from selling the dilapidated home he inherited after the death of his mother, he intendeds to give some money to his wife to pay for her cosmetic surgery and pay down their ever expanding debt. But once the money is in his hands, those ideas go by the wayside. He quickly decides that a trip to Reno is a better plan of action.

Soon he has everyone looking for him to get their hands on his money. Lydia, who has been supporting Matt through his long stretches of unemployment, wants him to give her the money he has promised to her. Lydia’s new lover, Hunter who was recently released from prison, needs the money to pay off the IRS, and his stepson Tanner, who is simply looking to impress Hunter and repaying him for the attention he has been lavishing on his.

If Matt wants to make it out of Reno with any money at all he has to keep his wits about him to stay one step ahead of his pursuers. But nothing is as easy as it seems in the world created by Monson. This is a fun, quick read that shows great noir is still being published (or re-released in this case).

Highly Recommended

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Monson Strikes Gold

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What do you get when you mix a man with a habit of drinking cough syrup to get high, a double murder, a horny as hell old lady, a cop who only thinks with one of his heads, and the creativity of Mike Monson? If you guessed a book that is wild, fun, and addictive, you hit the nail on the head!

This book opens with a boom…well actually the aftereffects of the booms of a double gauge shotgun as a drug-fueled double murder has occurred. The murder nets Miranda and Logan almost a million dollars in heroin, but leaves them with the problem of who to pin the murders on. As luck would have it, they have Miranda’s Uncle Paul, a divorcee with a cough syrup addiction, at their disposal. Even more convenient is the fact one of the murder victims is Paul’s ex-wife and he threatened both her and the other victim, who was the man she left Paul for. They set their plan into motion by planting the murder weapon on Paul and making certain that all signs point to him.

Paul’s mother, Mavis, is a funny and memorable character. She is a pot smoking, sex addicted GILF (Grandmother I’d Like to F***). When she meets Detective Fagan, who is investigating the double murder, she is more interested in being desirable than being helpful to Paul and trying to prove he is innocent.

Overall this is one of the best books I have read in a while. The story matter is serious, but Monson makes it a light, engaging read that had me laughing aloud and enjoying every chapter. Monson strikes gold with any book he pens or publishes and this book is no exception.

Highly Recommended.

All Due Respect 5 is Kicking A** and Taking Names

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What the hell is going on over at All Due Respect Books? Did someone sell their soul to the devil in return for the ability to only put out books that satisfy any lover of dark noir? Or is it just that Mike Monson and Chris Rhatigan have a keen eye for talent and are set on consistently publishing the best noir short stories, novellas, and novels coming out today? I am not sure which explanation to believe, but I am grateful for whatever is causing the influx of great books that are beginning to flood my TBR pile.

I can’t even begin to choose my favorite story from this badass collection. It starts with an excerpt from Steve Widdle’s upcoming novel. This sets the tone of the collection very nicely. It is a fast rolling selection and makes me excited for the novel to come out. After reading Widdle’s “Country Hardball”, I have been anxiously waiting for a novel to come our way.

Keith Rawson is showing that he pens some of the best short stories you can select. This story is a fun drug fueled ride into paranoia and insanity. I liked the beginning, loved the middle, and was dreading the ending, as I didn’t want the ride to end. Great ending to this one!

Paul D Brazill joins the party with a great tale of revenge. His main character, Godard, has his eye on revenge and retribution against a bent copper from his past. After getting the location of his adversary through the forceful beating of another old nemesis, the story really gets dark. Like I said before, hard to pick a favorite from this great collection, but this one certainly would be in my top choices. Excellent story!

I have long loved the stories I have read from Angel Luis Colon and this story continues that trend. Any story that opens with a gun to someone’s head and only gets better, is a story that you have to read. Sean Clarke is a classic noir character. Any man who is “20 G down with a 10% vig” and goes double or nothing is my kind of character. After he loses (not a spoiler for any true noir lover) he ends up with nothings and self –assesses himself be stating “ well nothing being my life”. Very strong stuff here and I am on pins and needles awaiting Colon’s upcoming novella.

The 5th story is by Garrnett Elliott and has themes of redemption and second chances. The beauty of it is in the hands of a noir author, those themes always lead to more trouble. Elliott doesn’t disappoint us and takes us on a fantastic ride filled with sex offenders, bales of drugs, and loads of bad choices.

Gabino Iglesias joins the party next with a character who wakes up in a strange hotel with a busted-up face and no memory of what happened. He knows he has a car that has 5 kilos of stolen drugs in the trunk and that he has a need to get moving before it’s too late, but he doesn’t count on the bad trip Iglesias has in store for him. I thought this story was a n exciting story with a great twist of an ending.

Want to know what the worst thing about the tale by Joe Sinisi is? It’s the last fiction offering of this collection. But, oh boy, does the collection close with a bang. This tale had some disturbing images within its plot and I thank Mr. Sinisi for that. He did the collection proud, as this story of a woman on a quest to find an old flame was a great read!

Take all these great stories and add reviews for Nigel Bird, Westlake, and Brewer and you have a must own collection here.

My TBR pile is extensive on any given day, and it just got bigger, as ADR just recently released a new one by Jake Hinkson and just published Uncle Dust by Rob Pierce. Guess what two books just jumped to the top of my TBR pile? I am in love with All Due Respect Books! Keep them coming!

All Due Respect to this Publisher

I have to break from the stream of discussing my favorite individual books of 2014 to discuss a publisher that deserves respect (pun intended) for having a great year. All Due Respect Books put out some of the hottest noir books this year. They brought the novella back to the mainstream with flair and gusto. I really enjoyed their “2-fers” which had two novellas by two different authors under the same cover. I really respect the fact that they kept the pricing of these novellas at a reasonable rate. Mike Monson and Chris Rhatigan are co-publishers at ADR and both are lending a helping hand beyond the publishing aspect by writing some very strong books that are right up my alley.

Below are reviews I published over this year for a few of their books:

You Don’t Exist by Pablo D’Stair and Chris Rhatigan:

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All Due Respect books is coming out swinging with this offering. Both reads from this twin billing offer a great slice of noir.

 

Rhatigan’s offering of Pessimist was a quality read that provides a spin on the “found money” theme. I thought this story was fun to read and it seemed to fly by. The main character Pullman leads a nondescript life until he takes the wrong bag from baggage claim at an airport and finds more than he bargained for inside said bag. Key up the drama, paranoia, and inner conflict and you have a read that is more than enjoyable.

 

D’Stair’s contribution to the book really floored me. It has a tone that reminded me of movie Lost Highway, in so far as you constantly find yourself wondering what is real in the story and what is a figment of the narrator’s imagination. Very cool story. This is what novellas are meant to be.

If this is an indication of where All Due Respect Books is headed, then all noir lovers better hold on tight, because that’s what both of these stories are…tight. I am an instant follower of ADR books and am eager to see what they have in store for us in the future.

 

A Man Alone by David Siddall

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This book begs the question “How far removed are you from the person you used to be?” When John Doyle breaks free from his old life, old habits, and old ways, he thinks he is done being who he used to be. But when pushed too far, he finds that sometimes we are who we are, no matter how much we may deny that fact.

The story was fun to read and was a perfect pace. I will be looking for more books from Siddall in the future.

 

Revenge is a Redhead by Phil Beloin Jr:

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There must be something in the water at All Due Respect Books, because all they seem to do is put out are quick, fun to read books that are written in a ball to the wall style. Revenge is a Redhead keeps the tradition rolling by giving us a story that satisfies the craving for violence, quick pacing, and occasional laughs. This book is the type of book that you can get through in a short amount of time and the pricing is spot on for this type of read. I for one am gobbling up all the offerings from the ADR library and I am enjoying each one. Viva la Respect!

The Scent of New Death by Mike Monson:

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(The book was originally published by Out of the Gutter prior to ADR being formed, but I include it since it is Monson’s book)

There is nothing better than trying a new author, really enjoying the book and realizing they have more you can read. I tried Monson’s book after seeing some solid reviews on various blogs that I hold in high regard when finding books in the vein I enjoy. Monson delivers a solid book with crime, sex, and my favorite, revenge. My only issue with the book is that it was only a novella, so it seemed to be over way too quickly. I am diving into his short stories next and then on to his other novella. Way to go Monson! (He has since put out a novel, Tussinland)

As you can see, I am highly impressed and entertained to what ADR is putting out. They are setting the stage to become a heavy hitter in the world of noir publishing.