On Tuesday, 11/22/11, James W. Hall had a book signing for his newly released “Dead Last” at Delray Beach’s Murder on the Beach bookstore.
I had a cake created by Publix and dropped it off when MOTB opened.
Some tid-bits from his chat…
Terry Miller (executive producer of “Burn Notice”) is a former student and recognized in the book’s acknowledgements. The good doctor considers “Dead Last” his homage to the goodly number of great cable TV shows currently on the air.
His Elmore Leonard stories were hysterical, as were the tales of the popularity of his books in prisons.
The best question from the audience asked what writers in the genre he was into when he first started writing mysteries.
He chose Elmore Leonard for characters; James Lee Burke for the sense of place; Robert B. Parker for snappy dialog; John D. MacDonald for his love of Florida; and Ross Macdonald for that 20 year old incident that has been simmering and is finally solved/revealed (a Freudian story.)
Crime novelist Wallace Stroby was on hand as well…Jim Hall had high praise for his “Cold Shot to the Heart.” I put it on my list.
Due to a comment or two, Dr. Hall inspired me to reread Elmore Leonard’s “La Brava.”
There were lots of laughs and a good time was had by all. Murder on the Beach does a great job and really treats the authors right.
I was back at the hotel in time to watch the second half of the Duke victory over Michigan and “Covert Affairs.”
If you have yet to discover Jim Hall, “Dead Last” is a good place to start. Thorn is a compelling and quirky protagonist.