An Interview with Craig McDonald: The Hector Lassiter Series

An exceptional, in-depth, interview with Craig McDonald by Steven Powell, a researcher at the University of Liverpool, UK.

Steven Powell is the editor of Conversations with James Ellroy (2012) and 100 American Crime Writers(2012). He has written several articles for the British Politics Review, blogs about crime fiction at VenetianVase.co.uk, and co-organized the “James Ellroy: Visions of Noir” conference at the University of Liverpool. His most recent work is James Ellroy: Demon Dog of Crime Fiction (Palgrave Macmillan 2016).

10 Three Chords“If you are not already initiated, I hope this interview will persuade you to start reading the Lassiter novels. They are compelling, thrilling and darkly humorous.

Lassiter is a brilliant creation…”

 

The Venetian Vase

Craig McDonald is an author and journalist. He has written fourteen novels, including, to date, nine books in the award-winning Hector Lassiter series. I have kept up a correspondence with Craig these past few years as we are both avid readers of James Ellroy. I’m also a massive fan of the Lassiter novels, and when Craig agreed to be interviewed by me, he also kindly supplied an advance copy of the final novel in the Lassiter series, the forthcoming Three Chords and the Truth. If you are not already initiated, I hope this interview will persuade you to start reading the Lassiter novels. They are compelling, thrilling and darkly humorous. Lassiter is a brilliant creation– a crime writer who learned his trade with Ernest Hemingway and the Lost Generation in Paris in the 1920s. He is also a man who seems dangerously prone to violent intrigue, doomed love affairs…

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Five-star review of DEATH IN THE FACE by Craig McDonald

Death in the Face (Hector Lassiter Novel #9) by Craig McDonald I loved traveling with author Hector Lassiter, his fellow friend Ian Fleming, and his devastating companion along the way, Haven Branch. Felt like I was right there with them on the planes and trains and in the restaurants, cafés and clubs. Combining writing, spying, … Continue reading Five-star review of DEATH IN THE FACE by Craig McDonald

HEAD GAMES: 90th anniversary of the theft of Pancho’s head

"Ninety years ago (on Feb. 6, to be precise), someone broke into the grave of assassinated Mexican Revolutionary General Francisco "Pancho" Villa and made off with his head. Pancho's skull remains MIA, so far as we know officially, on this 90th anniversary of the sacking of his grave. Just a very few years ago, one … Continue reading HEAD GAMES: 90th anniversary of the theft of Pancho’s head

DEATH IN THE FACE on a “Holiday Wish List” in BookList

Booklist Feature Article She Reads: Holiday Wish Lists Stover, Kaite Mediatore (author) "Dear Santa, I’m not going to bore you with an annual report of my behavior—virtuous or villainous. Suffice to say I was a very good reader, and I’d like some more, please. For my holiday reading, I hope I find these books under … Continue reading DEATH IN THE FACE on a “Holiday Wish List” in BookList

Publishers Weekly review of DEATH IN THE FACE

"Set in 1962, McDonald's fine ninth Hector Lassiter novel (after Print the Legend) takes the 62-year-old writer and an old friend of his, 54-year-old Ian Fleming (the creator of James Bond), to Japan. Ostensibly, Fleming is to do research for an Asian-set 007 novel, and Lassiter is covering Fleming's trip for Playboy magazine. In fact, … Continue reading Publishers Weekly review of DEATH IN THE FACE

DEATH IN THE FACE on the “Favorite Crime Fiction of 2015” list in The Rap Sheet

• Death in the Face, by Craig McDonald (Betimes): Those of us who inhale the Hector Lassiter series (starting with 2007’s Edgar-nominated Head Games) enjoyed a big year in 2014, so it was fair to expect that 2015 might be a bit on the quiet side. Happily, this was not the case, as McDonald released … Continue reading DEATH IN THE FACE on the “Favorite Crime Fiction of 2015” list in The Rap Sheet

An excerpt from DEATH IN THE FACE by Craig McDonald

Something Wicked This Way Comes   Sean Connery, dressed in his immaculate gray Anthony Sinclair-tailored James Bond suit with pale blue shirt and black knit tie, nodded for another bira—a beer—and said to Hector in his juicy, Glaswegian Scots accent, “I’ve read your stuff, Mr. Lassiter. Much of what I’ve read I’ve quite loved. Let’s … Continue reading An excerpt from DEATH IN THE FACE by Craig McDonald

Translation rights news: PRINT THE LEGEND to be published in Mongolia

Craig McDonald's novel PRINT THE LEGEND (#8 in the internationally acclaimed Hector Lassiter series) is going to be translated into Mongolian and published by Bolor Sudar Publishers in 2016. Hector Lassiter novels have been translated so far into French, Italian, Spanish (Mexico), Japanese, Korean and Russian. Listen to an excerpt read by Craig McDonald and … Continue reading Translation rights news: PRINT THE LEGEND to be published in Mongolia

“DEATH IN THE FACE is my love letter to that strange sad man Ian Fleming”

Craig McDonald about his new novel: DEATH IN THE FACE: THE YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE FACTOR (Caution: Mild spoilers ahead for the James Bond novel and film, YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE.) In 1962, a gravely ill Ian Fleming went to Japan to research what would result in his penultimate James Bond novel, YOU ONLY LIVE … Continue reading “DEATH IN THE FACE is my love letter to that strange sad man Ian Fleming”

Review of Craig McDonald’s DEATH IN THE FACE by Les Edgerton

This latest in Craig McDonald’s Hector Lassiter series—Death in the Face--is perhaps his finest. It’s my fervent hope that this isn’t the last in this wonderful series!   Like all the previous books in this series, McDonald sheds light on some of the most important literary figures of the past near-century on a personal level … Continue reading Review of Craig McDonald’s DEATH IN THE FACE by Les Edgerton

DEATH IN THE FACE: THE STRANGE LIFE & DEATH OF YUKIO MISHIMA

Craig McDonald about Yukio Mishima, one of the characters in his latest Hector Lassiter novel, Death in the Face: "Yukio Mishima (born Kimitake Hiraoka) was a gifted novelist and one of Japan’s great literary figures. He was a true renaissance man who composed nearly three dozen novels, nearly as many books of essays, more than … Continue reading DEATH IN THE FACE: THE STRANGE LIFE & DEATH OF YUKIO MISHIMA

A fabulous review of Craig McDonald’s TOROS & TORSOS

"I would highly recommend TOROS & TORSOS as a gripping and compulsive mystery, and one of the best novels I have come across to explore how an art movement is defined by its time and setting. But if the surrealists were to be believed, art defines its time and setting." Read the full text here: … Continue reading A fabulous review of Craig McDonald’s TOROS & TORSOS

HEAD GAMES features in Amazon Australia’s Winter Sale

After the big success of the first five Hector Lassiter novels, Australian fans of the series can discover the now-cult  Edgar® Award finalist HEAD GAMES -- for only AUS $0.99: http://www.amazon.com.au/Head-Games-Hector-Lassiter-novel-ebook/dp/B00SFQEQ92/ref=sr_1_6?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1437602800&sr=1-6 Read Craig McDonald's blog post to learn more about the novel and the series: http://craigmcdonaldbooks.blogspot.ie/2015/07/head-games-hello-again-australia.html http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68ciKIvQ5GI

Some like to listen dangerously…

                           Readergal from Booklist about the voice of Hector Lassiter: Lust for Listening Readergal has quite a few invisible boyfriends who talk to her. She has complete control over when they speak and what they talk about. And she has one for almost every … Continue reading Some like to listen dangerously…

Craig McDonald reads an excerpt from PRINT THE LEGEND

In March 2011, shortly after the publication of the French edition of PRINT THE LEGEND by Belfond, Craig was a guest of the Quai du Polar festival in Lyon, France. Scroll down and click on Play button to hear him reading the opening chapter (in English, of course): http://www.lanoirode.com/mcdonald.php Our edition of the novel is … Continue reading Craig McDonald reads an excerpt from PRINT THE LEGEND

How I Came to Write “ROLL THE CREDITS” (aka Hector Lassiter & WWII)

Craig McDonald about his inspiration for Roll the Credits. Fascinating! "Roll the Credits is, in short form, the Second World War and liberation of Paris seen through the eyes of author/screenwriter Hector Lassiter. But it's also a special novel in the Lassiter canon for me. Long before RTC, there was the Lassiter entry Head Games. … Continue reading How I Came to Write “ROLL THE CREDITS” (aka Hector Lassiter & WWII)

“Print the Legend” & the dark seduction of the writing life

The following essay by Craig McDonald is a re-presentation of a blog post originally written for Lesa Holstine's sight in March, 2010 upon release of his novel PRINT THE LEGEND in hardcover. The novel is now available for the first time in paperback, as well as eBook and audio formats: http://viewBook.at/Print_the_Legend “Print the Legend” & … Continue reading “Print the Legend” & the dark seduction of the writing life

COMING TOMORROW: “PRINT THE LEGEND”, THE DEFINITIVE EDITION

"Ernest Hemingway wrote, “All stories, if continued far enough, end in death.” It’s possible Hemingway’s 1961 death by shotgun blast was something other than the suicide history records. My new novel, Print the Legend, explores Hemingway’s demise: one of the most infamous of American authors’ deaths. Given its violent circumstances, it may also be the most unjustly under-investigated." Continue reading … Continue reading COMING TOMORROW: “PRINT THE LEGEND”, THE DEFINITIVE EDITION

Coming This Fall: Borderland Noir, The Anthology

“Swing for the fences…Gut-shoot me and/or break my heart, because, tonight, I just want to feel something.” In the beginning, there was BORDERLAND NOIR, the ezine. This autumn, Betimes Books will be releasing BORDERLAND NOIR, the print anthology, a mix of old and new stories and essays about life and death as lived along the … Continue reading Coming This Fall: Borderland Noir, The Anthology