Cut Me In by Ed McBain
Cut Me In (book review)
By Ed McBain
Hard Case Crime, Titan Books, RRP £7.99
Reviewed by Dave Lancaster
Summary: Police procedural master Ed McBain's lost early novel Cut Me In is a blistering (re)discovery. Hot, lean and delivered at breakneck speed, this is a welcome addition to the Hard Case Crime collection.
Cut Me In is everything you hope for in a pulp crime novel - it starts with sex, ends with suspense and throws in some murders and more sex for good measure along the way.
It's written with dynamic charge by Ed McBain (aka Evan Hunter), who created the fabled 87th Precinct series of detective novels (the longest running in literary history) but it was penned long before he became a dependable sensation in the crime fiction world. In fact, this firecracker of a novel has been lost for over half a century before being given the kiss of life by the Hard Case Crime imprint of Titan Books.
On the surface, it's a fairly typical hard boiled mystery: a universally hated guy gets murdered so his partner (who is no angel himself) vows to track down the killer, mainly because he's got plenty to gain himself from unravelling the mystery. There's a determined, skeptical cop and a handful of easy women propping up the pages, not to mention the obligatory pepperings of red herrings and coffee black stabs at grim comedy.
However, what's interesting about Cut Me In is that its main protagonist isn't a detective - he's a literary agency boss. Rewinding back to the 1950s when this written and McBain still had rejection letters fresh in his mind way before he became a household name, screenwriter for Alfred Hitchcock, inspiration for Akira Kurosawa and MWA Crime Grandmaster recipient, it makes the case that he was sore with his early attempts at penetrating the barb wire enclosed writing world. Here he could well be bitterly commenting that the very idea of getting fiction published (and exploited for screen rights) was testament to murder. Backstabbingly brutal at the very least.
There's passion here and McBain whips through his story as if he's excitedly writing it in the moment. Indeed, the entire narrative takes place over the course of just a few violence, seduction and alcohol fuelled summer days amid a dizzying New York heatwave. This is an unputdownable thriller that benefits greatly from that sense of immediacy. Sure, it lacks the kind of intricate narrative that Agatha Christie could dream up or the biting humour of Dashiell Hammett or Raymond Chandler peppered throughout their tales, but it's still a great read and one that is so pacy you can't help but be swept up in its inviting slipstream.
This edition, as well as featuring a gorgeous original cover illustration by Robert McGinnis, also contains a long lost 30-odd page novelette tacked on at the back entitled Now Die In It. Sublime from cover to cover.
You can check out a sample chapter from Cut Me In HERE and buy via Titan Books HERE.
Other film news
Following the runaway success of Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvelâs sequel to the sci-fi action franchise starter sees the Guardians fight to keep their newfound family together as they unravel the mystery of Peter Quillâs true parentage. Check out the first trailer and poster, right below this official synopsis:
New research by comparethemarket.com has revealed the best and worst car films of all time.
Brothers and Sisters is back in cinemas with a new epic spot for Pearl & Dean celebrating the unseen heroes of the film industry.
To celebrate the release of Deepwater Horizon, based on the true story of the devastating 2010 incident and starring Mark Wahlberg, Kate Hudson, Dylan OâBrien, Gina Rodriguez, Kurt Russell and John Malkovich, weâve taken a look at some of the greatest true stories ever told on film.
Most film fans will admit to reveling in the glory of siege thrillers. Who doesnât somewhat sadistically enjoy sitting comfortably, watching those on screen suffer the horrific, claustrophobic stuff of nightmares? In homage to all films that have incidentally saved on expensive production costs by filming the entire movie in (mostly) one setting, we pay tribute to the newly crowned leader of said genre - Green Room out on Blu-ray and DVD September 19. Weâve listed some of the most genius, gripping films to get you in the mood. Ready your inner Houdini, here are the top ten movies all claustrophobes should give a wide berth.
Saul Bass: 20 Iconic Film Posters book review
By Jennifer Bass and Pat Kirkham
Laurence King Publishing
September 2016, Â£19.95
You know when you're looking at a Saul Bass design (or someone ripping him off). The deceptively simple style, the direct focus, the twisted shapes, the solid colours, the striking fonts, the fact that you've been staring at it for way too long as the story within creeps out to greet you... Yes, this is the work of a master.
Starring Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill, Batman: The Killing Joke arrives on Blu-rayTM, DVD & Steelbook on August 8, is available on EST from July 26 and comes to Vue Cinemas for one night only July 25.
Tale of Tales tells the story of a bitter quest of a Queen, two mysterious sisters who provoke the passion of a king, and a King that marries his daughter off to an ogre. These tales are inspired by the fairytales by Giambattista Basile and stars Salma Hayek, John C. Reilly, Vincent Cassell, and Toby Jones
With the Best Picture Oscar winning modern masterpiece The Revenant arriving on DVD and Blu-ray from June 6th, now's a perfect time to look at the film's facts and figures in a fantastic infographic.
With the added bonus of the show now being ahead of its source material, nobody knows exactly what lies ahead. Even though weâve loved and lost many of our favourite characters, we wanted to find out who GoT fans will be getting behind this season. Casino Bonus Tips have conducted a survey of fans to find out which characters they are rooting for. Weâve grouped the top five below, along with why you should keep an eye on them in season six.
As the Oscar nominated Rocky sequel Creed steps out of the ring and to Blu-ray everywhere, let's take a look at the modern classic's stats by the numbers...
Catch 22 meets Shutter Island, William Peter Blatty's The Ninth Configuration is as deranged and as brilliant as that mash-up promises.
Movies based on video games are always action packed with great characters that are already loved due to their game counterparts! Over the years all types of video games have been brought to the big screen, and to celebrate Ratchet & Clank coming in to cinemas on April 29th, we take a look at some of the best game to film adaptations.
Fargo: Year 2 is out now on Digital HD and on DVD from 25th April, courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. To celebrate the release, we've got an exclusive "Dancing" scene clip from the brilliantly thrilling and darkly funny offshoot of the Coen Brothers' Oscar winning film classic.
JASON BOURNE sees original actor and director, Matt Damon and Paul Greengrass, return to the iconic series they created along with Alicia Vikander, Julia Stiles, Vincent Cassel and Tommy Lee Jones. Check out the first official, full length trailer here!
JOY is available on Digital HD, Blu-rayâ¢ and DVD from April 25, courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. To celebrate the release, we reveal the most famous female inventions in entrepreneurial history!
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is the first film in the new series of standalone Star Wars movies from Lucasfilm. It tells the story of how a group of unlikely heroes unite to undertake a daring and seemingly impossible mission to steal the plans for the Death Star.
Her latest role in Welcome to Me sees her as Alice, an extraordinary woman who after winning the lottery, buys her own TV talk show to broadcast her dirty laundry as both a form of exhibitionism and a platform to share her peculiar views on everything from nutrition to relationships to neutering pets. As her national audience rapidly grows, her family, friends and colleagues all become increasingly entangled in Alice's show.
To celebrate the release of Black Mass on Blu-ray and DVD on March 21st and on Digital HD March 19, we take a look at a selection of films based on crime stories.
Love triangles are the stuff of Hollywood legend, with many a classic film basing its premise on the agonising choice between two very different lovers. The wonderfully romantic BROOKLYNperfectly portrays the dilemma of choosing between two futures, with standout performances from the three young leads (Saoirse Ronan, Emory Cohen and Domhnall Gleeson) â so, to celebrate its release on EST, Blu-ray and DVD on the 29thFeb, weâre taking a look at some of the other greatest love triangles on film...