James Sallis’s recent and forthcoming books include the novel Others of My Kind, a reissue of his novel Death Will Have Your Eyes, and Black Night’s Gonna Catch Me Here: Selected Poems 1968-2012. He is also the author of Drive and of Chester Himes: A Life, and the translator of Raymond Queneau’s novel Saint Glinglin.
For French writer Jean-Patrick Manchette and the generation of writers who succeeded him, crime novels became far more than simple entertainment; they became a means of facing society’s failures head on. One after another the curtains are torn back. Pretense. Deceit. Manipulation. Till there in the small, choked room behind it all we witness society’s true engines—greed and violence—grinding away.