Friday, December 26, 2008


Nearly 14 years after its initial publication with Pantheon, Vicki Hendricks's Miami Purity is still getting attention... in this past Sunday's Virginian-Pilot, book reviewer Timothy Lockhart reminded noir fans of the lasting relevance of this Queen of Noir's 1995 debut:

"Vicki Hendricks has been called the 'Queen of Noir,' and after reading Miami Purity you'll know why. After accidentally killing her lover, stripper Sherri Parlay tries to clean up her act by taking a mundane job in a laundry run by a mother-son team, but the son (a mama's boy, figuratively and literally) soon has Parlay thinking bad thoughts about a variety of dirty deeds. As in James M. Cain's The Postman Always Rings Twice, one of the inspirations for this novel, the harder the characters in Miami Purity try to step out of the mud, the deeper they sink into it."

2008 Edgar Award nominee Vicki Hendricks -- a graduate of the same Floria International University creative writing program that also helped produce Dennis Lehane, Barbara Parker, and Christine Kling -- says, "It was a thrill to see my thesis published as my first novel, and now thirteen years later, I get to enjoy the comeback of Miami Purity thanks to Busted Flush Press. I love knowing that new readers are enjoying the book and it continues to live on its own."

Take a test drive with Miami Purity's opening paragraph:
"Hank was drunk and he slugged me -- it wasn't the first time -- and I picked up the radio and caught him across the forehead with it. It was one of those big boom boxes with the cassette player and recorder, but I never figured it would kill him. We were sitting in front of the fan, listening to country music and sipping Jack Daniels -- calling each other 'Toots' like we both enjoyed -- and all of a sudden the whole world changed. My old man was dead. I didn't feel like I had anything to do with it. I didn't make that choice."

Check out Miami Purity for yourself and find out why it's still heralded as a noir masterpiece. Vicki also has an original story -- "Gator"-- in the brand-new Out of the Gutter 5.

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