Tuesday, February 23, 2010

What is Craig McDonald reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Craig McDonald, author of the newly released novel, Print the Legend.

His entry begins:
I tend to have several books going at any given time. This past year, I agreed to serve on a reading committee for one of crime fiction’s major genre awards and my reading material was largely mandated for me — there were nearly 300 novels to consider.

With that task behind me, I’ve turned back to some old preoccupations/favorite books.

At the moment, I’m re-reading Michael S. Reynolds’ excellent and definitive multi-volume biography of Ernest Hemingway. I just concluded An American Homecoming, which covers the period roughly between the completion of The Sun Also Rises and the wrapping up of the composition of A Farewell To Arms.

I’ve now turned to the equally excellent follow-up volume, Hemingway: The 1930s, which moves in to the Key West period of Hemingway’s life, taking him...[read on]
Among the early praise for Print the Legend:
Ingeniously plotted and executed, Print the Legend is an epic masterpiece from Craig McDonald. Beginning to end, I was riveted by this story of character, history and intrigue.

The competition for the future of crime fiction is fierce, but don't take your eyes off Craig McDonald. He's wily, talented and -- rarest of the rare -- a true original. I am always eager to see what he's going to do next."

With Print the Legend, with a James Ellroy-like scope and vision of national history, McDonald takes on governmental conspiracy, Hemingway hagiography, the under-history of the FBI, the Death of the Author (literal and figurative) and the tantalizing, destructive mythologization of the Writer's Life. While the scale is immense, McDonald's hand is deft, and we never forget that, at its center, this is a human story, complex and bruising and deeply felt.

"Print the Legend is a landmark book. Lassiter for me is the Flashman/Zelig of the new era, but with a ferocious literary knowledge that is worn so lightly. A book beyond genre, stunning."
Read more about Print the Legend, and learn more about the author and his work at Craig McDonald's website, blog, and Crimespace page.

Read "The Story Behind the Story: Print the Legend, by Craig McDonald," at The Rap Sheet.

Writers Read: Craig McDonald.

--Marshal Zeringue