Grind Joint

Grind Joint

by Dana King

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A new casino is opening in the rural town of Penns River, Pennsylvania but just where the money is coming from no one really knows. Is it Daniel Hecker, bringing hope to a mill town after years of plant closings? Or is the town's salvation really an opening for Mike "The Hook" Mannarino's Pittsburgh mob to move part of their action up the river? Or could it be someone even worse?

When the body of a drug dealer is dumped on the casino steps shortly before its grand opening, Detectives Ben Doc Dougherty and Willie Grabek have to survive their department's own inner turmoil and figure out not only who's behind the murder, but what it means to whoever is behind the operation itself. Between the cops, the mob, and the ex-spook in charge of casino security (Daniel Rollison, a man with more secrets than anyone will ever know), GRIND JOINT is a mesmerizing mix of betrayal, police action, small town politics, sudden violence and the lives of the people of a town just trying to look after itself.

Praise for GRIND JOINT ...

"King has created vividly drawn characters, a plot the late Elmore Leonard would appreciate, and dialogue that hits all the right notes. Let's hope GRIND JOINT is the first in a new series chronicling life and crime in the Alleghenies." -- Booklist

"One of the best novels I've read this year. Period." -- Les Edgerton, author of Bomb, The Bitch and The Rapist

"I cannot remember a book I've read -- including anything by Elmore -- where the cops sounded more like cops, tricking suspects, stumbling with women, smart-talking the tough guys, and finally getting out of a big shootout with brains, brawn, and guts." -- Jack Getze, author of the award-winning Austin Carr series

Product Details

BN ID: 2940156927968
Publisher: Down & Out Books
Publication date: 10/26/2016
Series: Penns River , #2
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 304
File size: 551 KB

About the Author

Dana King owns two nominations for the Private Eye Writers of America Shamus Award, for A Small Sacrifice (2013) and again two years later for The Man in the Window. His novel Grind Joint was noted by Woody Haut in the L.A. Review of Books as one of the fifteen best noir reads of 2013. A short story, “Green Gables,” appeared in the anthology Blood, Guts, and Whiskey, edited by Todd Robinson. Other short fiction has appeared in Thuglit, Spinetingler, New Mystery Reader, A Twist of Noir, Mysterical-E, and Powder Burn Flash.

Dana lives in Maryland with The Beloved Spouse. His blog, One Bite at a Time, resides at

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Grind Joint 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
KaneH More than 1 year ago
Here is a story set in a particular region of rust-belt Pennsylvania, where the writer knows and loves the place and its people, no matter how battered and ill-used they are. Accurate and poignant, it depicts those that live on after an economy has dried up. What's left for many is a resigned memory of loss and better times. Perfect breeding ground for crime, but the stalwart small-town police are better and smarter than the crooks think. There's a lovely cat-and-mouse game between numerous opponents and shifting alliances. Great crime fiction with memorable people.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed this book so much.
Benjamin_Sobieck More than 1 year ago
Grind Joint realizes the promises made in Dana King's first two excellent crime novels, Wild Bill and Worst Enemies. First to the reader, in the most vivid yet readable entry in the crime author's catalog. Even the most degenerate lowlife - and there are plenty of them in this tale of casinos, cops, cash and corruption - lives and breathes in the writing. With a large roster of characters, this easily could've become bogged down. But King's tight prose is such that it can accomplish in two sentences something that could've eaten two pages. That keeps the action flowing forward from the first page onward. King's done this before in other novels, but this time the urgency is as built in as part of the setting. There's a death before the first 1,000 words is up. That may have something to do with the publisher, Stark House Press. It's about damn time someone figured out what a great writer King is in this genre. Wild Bill and Worst Enemies set the scene for this debut with Stark House, and things couldn't have turned out better. If mob fiction is your thing, and even if it isn't, Grind Joint is a great crime novel to get lost inside. From the small things, like the way the police officers talk to each other, all the way up to the grand schemes at the heart of the story, Grind Joint is a mob fiction must. You'll never gamble at a casino again without looking over your shoulder.