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Shades Of Black: Crime And Mystery Stories By African-American Authors

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  79 ratings  ·  7 reviews

A dazzling collection of crime and mystery stories, Shades of Black is a landmark achievement. Bringing together today's brightest talent from the field-from Walter Mosley, "one of America's best mystery writers" (New York Times), to the late Hugh Holton, whose "gift for retaining suspense is golden" (Chicago Sun-Times)-it is the first anthology of African-American mystery

Hardcover, 368 pages
Published February 3rd 2004 by Berkley Hardcover
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Julie Davis
Jul 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Not bad. Like most anthologies there's a real wild card aspect to the selections. I liked about half of the stories which range from cozies to a children's story (which I liked) to noir ... even including a supernatural werewolf story. ...more
This was ... amazingly uneven. Sorry, fans of Hugh Holton, but "Werewolf Files" was really terrible: flat, unfunny, with uninteresting characters. And the kids' story was equally terrible.

Some of the good stuff: "Since You Went Away," "Murder on the Southwest Chief," "Doggy Style" (which had elements of horror missing from the Holton), and "For Services Rendered." These are, in fact, some of the first stories in the book, which made it seem like an excellent anthology. Unfortunately, the stories
May 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When I read a short story collection, I look up the authors whose stories I enjoyed to see what else they’ve written and how available their books are. The only author I recognized in this series was Walter Mosley. There are others I want to follow—and my main frustration is that most of them aren’t available in my library. I strongly recommend checking out this book to find some wonderful new detective/mystery protagonists. My next hunt will be various ebook vendors to see if I can find some of ...more
Wendi Wanders
Nov 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a helpful anthology

Short story form mysteries by black authors. It's edited by one of my favourite mystery writers, white or black, and she is my favourite contemporary mystery writers.
As an anthology, this volume includes a variety of styles, hard bitten, police procedure, deliberately farcical, even a juvenile. I don't like all of those genres, but the collection helped me find a couple new-to-me authors to look for, and it's a nice representative selection.

(I bought my copy for kind
Kim G.
Mar 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
What a fantastic set of Authors for this book back in the day some of these stories are so good I didn't want them to end. I wanted them to continue with more character development. I can't wait to research some of these authors so I can get their books. To name a few, Percy Spurlark Parker, Glenville Lovell, Robert Greer, Gar Anthony Haywood, and Jacqueline Turner so many more I have encountered reading this book. I truly enjoyed these different authors' stories. ...more
Jul 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a masterfully crafted anthology dedicated to a mystery author I was gifted to know upon meeting him when his first novel was published, Captain Hugh Holton.

Writers of color have interesting perspectives on history, crime and mystery. These stories are not for the faint of heart. They are gritty, raw, compassionate, sentimental, dirty, direct, obtuse -- just name it! I would recommend all writers and lovers of mystery try this collection.
Jul 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good collection

As with any collection, I liked some better than others, but overall it was a great intro to a lot of new writers. Definitely on the gritty/hard-boiled side, more urban than rural/suburban. One thing I noted, in contrast to anthologies I've read by white writers, is that far fewer of these writers have Kindle books available. Not surprised, but that needs to change.
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Eleanor Taylor Bland was an African American writer of crime fiction. She was the creator of Lincoln Prairie, Illinois (based on Waukegan, Illinois) police detective Marti McAllister.

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