The Matthew Scudder stories
Matthew Scudder #18
On Sale: November 20, 2013
Paperback / e-Book
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Lawrence Block’s 17 Matthew Scudder novels have won the
hearts of readers throughout the world—along with a bevy of
awards including the Edgar, the Shamus, the Philip Marlowe
(Germany), and the Maltese Falcon (Japan). And it’s Matt
Scudder who’s been largely responsible for Block’s lifetime
achievement awards: Grand Master (Mystery Writers of
America), The Eye (Private Eye Writers of America), and the
Cartier Diamond Dagger (UK Crime Writers Association).
But Scudder has starred in short fiction as well, and it’s
all here, from a pair of late-70s novelettes (Out the Window
and A Candle for the Bag Lady) through By the Dawn’s Early
Light (Edgar) and The Merciful Angel of Death (Shamus), all
the way to One Last Night at Grogan’s, a moving and elegiac
story never before published. It was short fiction that kept
the series alive on the several occasions when the flow of
novels was interrupted, and short stories that took Scudder
down different paths and showed us unmapped portions of his
Some of these stories appeared in such magazines as Alfred
Hitchcock, Ellery Queen, and Playboy. The title vignette,
The Night and the Music, was written for a NYC jazz festival
program; another, Mick Ballou Looks at the Blank Screen, has
appeared only as the text of a limited-edition broadside.
And the final story, putting Matt and Elaine at a table with
Mick and Kristin Ballou in a shuttered Hell’s Kitchen
saloon, has its first appearance in this volume.
Several stories look back from the time of their writing,
with Scudder recounting events from his former life as a
cop, first as a patrolman partnered with the legendary Vince
Mahaffey, then as an NYPD detective leading a double life.
In Looking for David, Matt and Elaine are on vacation in
Florence, where they encounter a man Matt arrested decades
earlier; now Matt finally learns the motive behind a brutal
Along with the eleven stories and novelettes, The Night and
The Music includes a list of the seventeen novels in
chronological order, and an author’s note detailing the
origin and bibliographical details of each of the stories.
Brian Koppelman, the prominent screenwriter and director
(Solitary Man, Ocean’s Thirteen, Rounders) and a major Matt
Scudder fan, has sweetened the pot with an introduction.
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