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Cape Cod Noir (Akashic Noir) Paperback – May 17, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Akashic Noir
  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Akashic Books; Original edition (May 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1936070979
  • ISBN-13: 978-1936070978
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #709,071 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Youthful alienation and despair dominate the 13 stories in Akashic's noir volume devoted to Cape Cod. [It] will satisfy those with a hankering for a taste of the dark side." --Publishers Weekly

About the Author

David L. Ulin is book critic of the Los Angeles Times. From 2005 to 2010, he was the paper's book editor. He is the author of The Myth of Solid Ground: Earthquakes, Prediction, and the Fault Line Between Reason and Faith, and the editor of Another City: Writing from Los Angeles and Writing Los Angeles: A Literary Anthology, which won a 2002 California Book Award. He has written for The Atlantic Monthly, The Nation, The New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, Columbia Journalism Review, and National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. He teaches in the low residency MFA in Creative Writing Program at the University of California, Riverside’s Palm Desert Graduate Center, and was a visiting professor in the Literary Journalism program at the University of California, Irvine in the spring of 2010. His new book, The Lost Art of Reading, is due out in November.

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Richard Thomas on August 3, 2011
Format: Paperback
(This review was originally published at The Cult.)

When I think of cities that inspire noir, Cape Cod is certainly not at the top of that list. I think of New York, Chicago, Baltimore even, but never would I have thought of Cape Cod. In the ongoing series by Akashic Books, they've visited almost fifty cities across the United States, and around the world. It's a compelling series to say the least. Once I started to get into this collection, though, I understood the appeal of Cape Cod. Any place where you have the rich surrounded by the middle and working-class, the permanent residents dealing with entitled tourists, there's bound to be a simmering pot of angst and violence waiting to overflow.

Editor David L. Ulin speaks to the concept of noir in the opening of this book, and the reasons that Cape Cod came to mind. What is noir to him?:

"...that air of desolate clarity, of a character staring into the abyss as the abyss stares back...a cry in the darkness of a world that is, as best, apathetic, and at worst, in violent disarray."

Twelve pages into this collection of thirteen stories by authors such as Paul Tremblay, Dave Zeltserman, Jedidiah Berry and many other dark visionaries, I found myself nodding my head. David gets it, I thought. This is going to be good. But how is he going to make this work in Cape Cod? He elaborates:

"...my experiences on the Cape suggest...that noir is everywhere. You can see it in the desperate excitations of the summer people, the desire to make their vacations count. You can see it in the tension of the year-rounders, who rely on the seasonal trade for survival, even as they must tolerate having their communities overrun...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By D. A. Terry on July 20, 2011
Format: Paperback
This collection of stories takes the reader into the shadowlands -- behind the dunes, back in history, up dirt roads into stands of pine. There is a creepy underworld on Cape Cod, where death is incidental and misunderstandings lead to revenge.

This is not a book for tourists! But it is a book for lovers of noir!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Sorel VINE VOICE on August 21, 2011
Format: Paperback
This summer I am spending three months on the West coast...far away from my eastern roots. Though I haven't been really homesick, when I saw "Cape Cod Noir" on a bookshelf I knew that I had to have it! Reading the stories chilled my spine while taking me back to the many summers I spent on the Cape. I think this is definitely a great book for those familiar with this locale though it might be lacking for outsiders.

As you may know, this collection is just one in the "noir" series which collects short stories in different cities around the country. Because the stories are noir, they are often eerie, have some violence, and might give you the chills. I have read other books in this series including "Mexico City Noir" and "New Orleans Noir" both of which I was unable to get into. While some of the stories were well written, I didn't feel connected to any of the characters in any of the stories. I finally realized that I think my lack of connection with the locales made it hard for me to enjoy the stories.

It is for this reason that when I cracked the spine on the Cape Cod edition, I felt like I had come home. There is a map in the front of the book that shows where each story takes place so that people can orient themselves. This specific edition is broken into thee parts: Out of Season, Summer People, and End of the Line. Obviously, the first section contains stories about residents who are there year round and those in the area from September to May. The Summer People tells of just that, tales that take place during the summer usually involving vacationers. Some of the stories are written very well and have unique narratives. Such is the case with the story "Nineteen Snapshots of Dennisport" which is told in nineteen paragraphs that describe photographs that are not included.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By T. Ingelson on March 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
After reading through this anthology I was a bit surprised and impressed about the range of pieces that were chosen. Most of the short stories I did enjoy, however some were just so creative it got to a point where they were pushing the boundaries of Noir. I went to a guest appearance of David Ulin at my college today and was excited to hear that he was trying to push the boundaries of a typical noir story. He said he wanted to get away from a typical crime-detective feel and blow it up to something even more special. Anyways, This book was very impressive and this introduced me into noir genre itself which led me to start watching film noir and even other noir stories. I would say pick up this book and enjoy the range of short stories included.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joshua P. Zatcoff on November 11, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Overall, this was a great read. I can't really complain about any of the stories, they were all good in some form or another, and I will likely read it again.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By PJ Coldren VINE VOICE on July 25, 2011
Format: Paperback
CAPE COD NOIR is another entry in the long-standing and well-received anthology collections of Akashic Books. Taken individually, the stories are (for the most part) excellent. Collectively, I got no real feeling that they were more representative of Cape Cod than they might be of any resort community. Whatever makes Cape Cod singularly Cape Cod didn't seem to come across very clearly. Still, as a collection of short stories, I would recommend this for fans of the form. For those looking for the Cape Cod they think they know . . . not so much.
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