Lawrence Block's 17 Matthew Scudder novels have won the hearts of readers throughout the world - along with a bevy of awards including the Edgar, the Shamus, the Philip Marlowe (Germany), and the Maltese Falcon (Japan). But Scudder has starred in short fiction as well, and it's all here, from a pair of late-'70s novelettes ("Out the Window" and "A Candle for the Bag Lady") through "By the Dawn's Early Light" (Edgar) and "The Merciful Angel of Death" (Shamus), all the way to "One Last Night at Grogan's", a moving and elegiac story never before published. Some of these stories appeared in such magazines as Alfred Hitchcock, Ellery Queen, and Playboy.
The title vignette, "The Night and the Music", was written for a NYC jazz festival program; another, "Mick Ballou Looks at the Blank Screen", has appeared only as the text of a limited-edition broadside. Several stories look back from the time of their writing, with Scudder recounting events from his former life as a cop, first as a patrolman partnered with the legendary Vince Mahaffey, then as an NYPD detective leading a double life. Along with these eleven stories and novelettes, The Night and The Music includes a list of the seventeen novels in chronological order, and an author's note detailing the origin and bibliographical details of each of the stories.
Brian Koppelman, the prominent screenwriter and director (Solitary Man, Ocean's Thirteen, Rounders) and a major Matt Scudder fan, has sweetened the pot with an introduction.
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New York City Crime
New York. Police. Crime.
All of the Mathew Scudder books and crime fiction. You are taken into an intimate picture of the criminal underworld showing the connection between police and criminals and the effect such a job has. It's a fascinating journey into this world of New York, alcoholism, recovery, and the people who live these lives.
As it is composed of short stories, it is easy to listen to one and then come back to a new story later. Probably not one to listen to in one sitting as it would be too overwhelming. Much better to dip into and save more for later.
Lawrence Block's reading is compelling and authentic. It's as if he is talking directly to you in one of those poorly lit New York bars and you can imagine jazz playing softly in the background. Atmospheric!
- Mr K Costelloe