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False Negative

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False Negative

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Twenty years after Brides of Blood, Koenig weighs in with another gritty, no-holds-barred, hard-boiled whodunit set in the 1950s. Gifted journalist Adam Jordan, too tired to attend a congressman’s routine speech, fakes an article, only to learn later from his editor that the politician dropped dead before going on stage to deliver it. Now a pariah, Jordan manages only to land work with a seedy New York City true crime magazine, Real Detective. When he tries to solve the fetishistic strangulation murder of an attractive 22-year-old waitress found hog-tied on a Long Island beach, his probing leads him to more corpses and a narrow escape from death. Razor-sharp prose (e.g., “Wing’s dreams were short on specifics until he was in New York with a knife in his pocket”) and a fast-moving plot will please Mickey Spillane and Cornell Woolrich fans. With any luck, readers won’t have to wait another 20 years for Koenig’s next book. Agent: Pamela Malpas, Harold Ober Associates. (June)
From the Publisher
"Twenty years after Brides of Blood, Koenig weighs in with another gritty, no-holds-barred, hard-boiled whodunit set in the 1950s. Gifted journalist Adam Jordan, too tired to attend a congressman’s routine speech, fakes an article, only to learn later from his editor that the politician dropped dead before going on stage to deliver it. Now a pariah, Jordan manages only to land work with a seedy New York City true crime magazine, Real Detective. When he tries to solve the fetishistic strangulation murder of an attractive 22-year-old waitress found hog-tied on a Long Island beach, his probing leads him to more corpses and a narrow escape from death. Razor-sharp prose (e.g., “Wing’s dreams were short on specifics until he was in New York with a knife in his pocket”) and a fast-moving plot will please Mickey Spillane and Cornell Woolrich fans. With any luck, readers won’t have to wait another 20 years for Koenig’s next book." - Publisher's Weekly

Joseph Koenig (author of Little Odessa and Brides of Blood) returns from a 20-year absence from the publishing scene with a whopper of a thriller. While written in modern-day America, Koenig captures all the spirit and flavor of the 1950s. - Celebrity Cafe

“False Negative marks the return of a writer who knows dialog, colorful yet real characters, and how to make an original premise.” – Comic Attack

Library Journal
Set in 1950s Atlantic City, Koenig's (Floater; Brides of Blood) first novel in nearly 20 years revolves around Adam Jordan, a newspaper reporter on the rise who is fired for submitting a fake article about a congressman's speech he was too tired to cover (he gets caught because the speaker died before he could deliver it). Blacklisted from other newspapers for this transgression, Jordan begins writing for Real Detective, a true-crime magazine on its last legs. Tracking the story of a beauty queen hopeful found dead on the beach, Jordan runs into resistance from some very powerful men. VERDICT The snappy, fast-paced story follows the traditional hard-boiled style one comes to expect from this publisher, and Koenig's characters, sense of place, and turns of phrase make the novel stand out. Even characters with no more than a cameo are fully formed and linger in the imagination. A perfect summer treat for fans of gritty mysteries by authors like Lawrence Block and Richard Stark (aka Donald Westlake).—Julie Elliott, Indiana Univ. Lib., South Bend
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780857685803
  • Publisher: Titan
  • Publication date: 6/5/2012
  • Series: Hard Case Crime
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 357,927
  • Product dimensions: 5.07 (w) x 8.01 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 11, 2012

    Not my cup of tea.

    Didn't care for the 40s style of mystery narrative with the paper thin plot and predictable conclusion. Purchased based upon a review in a national publication. Readers take note, just because this novice reviewer didn't enjoy doesn't mean you won't.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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