October 22, 2008

Hardboiled Brooklyn

Tim McLoughlin probes the seedy, non-organic-eating side of Brooklyn.

Matthew Patin

"Samuel Spade's jaw was long and bony, his chin a jutting v under the more flexible v of his mouth." So begins Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon. It's a fitting description, crafted at the height of the geometry-exalting art deco era. And as it mirrored that movement, it heralded another: noir. Specifically, the dark, pensive, gritty badasses and antiheroes that came to iconify modern crime fiction. There are few better settings for such stories than equally badass Brooklyn, and Tim McGoughlin knows it.

In 2004, McGoughlin edited and contributed to Brooklyn Noir, an anthology of short crime fiction culled from pros like Pete Hamill and newcomers like bartender Thomas Morrissey, both of whom netted awards for their contributions. (Now in its third volume, the series, still edited by McLoughlin, has gone true crime). Having worked in the criminal-justice system, and, perhaps more saliently, having come from a long dynasty of Brooklynites, McGoughlin brings a knowledgeable perspective to crime stories set in the borough.

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Article by Matthew Patin

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