Tuesday, April 8, 2014

All Due Respect #2 / Chris Rhatigan (Ed)


Reviewed by: Keith Nixon

Genre: Crime / Noir / Short Story Anthology

Approximate word count: 35-40,000 words

Availability    
Kindle  US: YES  UK: YES  Nook: NO  Smashwords: NO  Paper: YES
Click on a YES above to go to appropriate page in Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords store

Author:

Seven authors with too much background to cover here, but you can learn more about the collection and the organization releasing these collections here.

Description:

A collection of noir and crime stories.

Appraisal:

I’ve previously reviewed another All Due Respect anthology and described it as perhaps the best of its type that I’ve read. And I meant it. Does #2 reach this high water mark? Not quite, unfortunately. Although it is still rather good and well worth a read.

This is also a much shorter book. It seems, from a check on Amazon, to be split across two collections - #1 and #2, not to be confused with the previously referenced collection.

All Due Respect #2 opens with a short set on a deep sea fishing smack, called NFG, written by Owen Laukkanen, a very strong story about privilege and murder. It’s atmospheric and catapults the reader into what must be a very demanding life on a small piece of wood and metal in the wide open sea.

Another strong story is Ice Cold Alibi, by Eric Beetner. An ex-prostitute literally clears up after her husband murders his boss, a butcher, after one too many bitchy comments. Very well written, it’s noir at its best.

Interestingly there is a non-fiction section, comprising an interview with Chris F. Holm, followed by a piece written by him. A little different and unexpected change of tack in proceedings.

However what dragged this collection down to the previous one reviewed was a couple of weaker stories and editing. One short of note is That Time I Worked For The Feds In Mississippi  by Joseph Rubas. It’s about a criminal who’s roped in by the FBI to track down some kids who’ve gone missing, probably at the hands of the KKK. It’s a good bit of fun, but just a bit silly for an anthology such as this. The protagonist is able to gun down whoever he likes whilst nonchalantly tracking down the killers.

I also mentioned the editing. I really struggle with repeat words and came across several in clunky sentences. For example:

…and deduced he wasn’t moving it anywhere until he’d cleared a path through the path through the filth. He’d have to clear a path.

And:

Once it looked like the gang was all there, I got my carbine and walked across the street, right in front of an oncoming car.

I read this last quote several times and just couldn’t see the point of the oncoming car element. It wasn’t mentioned again and there was no outcome. It dragged me to a stop as a reader – this happened a couple of time.

That being said All Due Respect #2 did have a lot to live up to. Almost there, this is still well worth a read.

Format/Typo Issues:

Other than a few clunky sentences, nothing of note.


Rating: **** Four Stars

1 comment:

Paul D. Brazill said...

This is All Due Respect magazine, Keith. The second issue. (I'm in the first one!)

The previous book your referring to is an anthology. This is a quarterly magazine. It used to be a webzine.