Marilyn Stasio, New York Times Sunday Book Review
EST CRIME NOVEL DEBUT 2008"(one of six)
The American Library Association
he best cop noir in years..."
Lee Child, author of New York Times
bestseller Nothing to Lose
eaders are likely to need a day off work after finishing Newton's breakneck debutthey'll have been up all night. Patti Black, a real-life Chicago cop, serves as the inspiration for Patti Black, the heroine of this novel. In a bravura opening sequence, a raid on a Gangster Disciple-controlled building goes spectacularly wrong, leading to the discovery of a woman's body bricked-up in a basement wall. A day earlier, someone shot at the mayor, and the superintendent of police wants Black to investigate connections between the assassination attempt, a radical black Alderman, and a casino-license vote. But Black's most urgent concern is the body, whose identity threatens to bring her horrific but buried past screaming back to life.
This is dark and dizzying, bloody and bewildering, and highly original. Newton's research informs an authentic-sounding cop voice, and her ruminations on North Side versus South Side Chicago go deeper than the inevitable Cubs-Sox rivalry. It's not flawless: some plot points are a stretch, and Black's near-constant state of gun-waving meltdown flirts with overkill. But those who relish tortured heroines, unrelenting intensity, and full-throttle races through urban minefields will snatch this one up."
Booklist (starred review)
ALUMET CITY, Newton's absorbing debut novel is a galloping ride from first page to last."
n Newton's searing debut, confrontational and uncompromising Patti Black, Chicago's most decorated cop, gets caught in a web of murder and betrayal. Newton, who based his heroine's character on a real Chicago police officer, creates a netherworld full of violent and duplicitous people."
aw, heart-pounding, adrenalin-producing fiction doesn't get much better than this. Highly recommended for all fiction collections."
Michele Leber, Library Journal
he literary equivalent of speeding down an amusement park water slide only to find an industrial strength meat grinder awaiting you at the bottom: By the time you realize what's happening, it's already much too late to turn back... an intense and explosive read destined to become a cult classic."
Paul Goat Allen, The Chicago Tribune
(read the full review here
achine-gun street-demotic, high octane, adrenalin drenched and breathless."
Cath Staincliffe, The Tangled Web, UK
terrific debut, and, while it is early to make such a judgment, quite likely the debut of the year. For the narrative drive and claustrophobic sense of evil, it is right up there with Lehane's Gone, Baby, Gone
. Damn, what a great book! I look forward to whatever he does next."
(#1 paperback at the Seattle Mystery Bookshop, March 2008)
n Charlie Newton's arresting debut novel, CALUMET CITY, Officer Patti Black is a potent mix of pain and toughness, vulnerability and adrenalin that anchors the book any time it threatens to careen out of control. She may be too damaged to return, but here's hoping for more from Newton."
op noir at its darkest, most grimacing best. With shockingly brilliant clarity, first-time author
Charlie Newton drops us into a ghetto world and systematically shatters the lights, strips our defenses,
dead-bolts the back door, and siphons our air until we are completely, helplessly trapped in the
extravagantly brutalized confines of Patti Black's psyche. The experience is claustrophobic and
excruciatingly tense, because it is utterly believable. Newton writes with a stylized prose so effective that it's
almost implosive, forming, detonating, and reforming in a frenetic first-person narration that perfectly
articulates danger and emotional unraveling. Combining the blackest humor with the bleakest of nightmares,
this book is an incredible achievement."
Rebecca Tatham, Crimespree Magazine
harlie Newton doesn't try to reinvent the cop noir genre in his debut novel CALUMET CITY. He doesn't weave an overly unique plot, and the characters probably are similar to some readers have experienced before. But none of that is important. CALUMET CITY isn't about re-imagining the genre. It's about making it darker and grittier.
CALUMET CITY should become an instant favorite among fans of the genre. It takes all the staples of a modern mystery and mangles them into a dirty plot with twists and turns to the last page.
Newton has created what should turn into a cult favorite among noir fans. His gritty characters and settings combined with break-neck pacing make for a darkly enjoyable read."
Adam Briner, SouthtownStar.com
iolent, suspenseful, and edgy, CALUMET CITY succeeds simultaneously as tough-as-titanium noir crime novel, intriguing character study, and top-notch thriller. Unafraid of provocative issues and wonderfully adept at plotting and pacing, Charlie Newton has produced a winner. CALUMET CITY ought to be rated 'R' for raw and remarkable."
Tim Davis, Bookloons.com
ALUMET CITY is gritty, brutal, engrossing, enthralling and entertaining. Patti Black is one of the most interesting characters I've ever met."
Linda Brown, The Mystery Bookstore, LA
ouldn't put it down. Newton's one hell of a writer..."
Jonathan Eig, senior special writer for The Wall Street Journal and author of Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig
terrific modern noir on a raw Chicago cityscape harboring too many untold stories. If you try to set it down this book will kick you in the teeth."
Kevin Guilfoile, author of Chicago Tribune
bestseller Cast of Shadows
read CALUMET CITY in two marathon sessions; it's a knockout. A powerhouse debut. Packed with nonstop action and searing emotion, written in blistering prose, CALUMET CITY marks Charlie Newton as a new force in suspense fiction."
Jeff Abbott, international bestseller and award winning author of Fear and Panic
ou like real noir? Want gritty characters? Charlie Newton's CALUMET CITY will have you cheering while you turn pages so fast you'll burn your fingers."
Donald E. McQuinn, author of Warrior, Wake of Darkness
e started our writing careers together. Charlie writes noir fiction, the kind you read with the lights on and a baseball bat next to you."
Holly Kennedy, author of The Penny Tree, a Book Sense Notable
ewton's biggest gamble is assuming the battle-scarred voice of his protagonist. If you think this is an act of great imagination and empathy, you'll be cheering a major talent; otherwise you'll wonder whether you've picked up a page-turner or a meat-grinder."
David Hoppe, NUVO
(read the full review here
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