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Farewell, Amethystine

Farewell, Amethystine

Available: June 4, 2024

Easy Rawlins’ latest client sends him down a warren of memory and nostalgia, blinding him to reason and risk, from “master of the genre,” (Washington Post) Walter Mosley.

January 1970 finds Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins, LA’s premier Black detective, at 50 years of age despite all expectations.  He has a loving family, a beautiful home, and a thriving investigation agency.  All is right with the world… and then Amethystine Stoller, his own personal Helen of Troy, arrives. Her ex-husband is missing. A simple enough case. But even as Easy takes his first step in the investigation he trips.  He falls into the memory of things past. Little things, like loss, love, a world war, and a hunger that has eaten at him since he was a Black boy on his own on the streets of Fifth Ward, Houston, Texas.

The missing ex, a young white man named Curt Fields, is found dead. Easy’s only real friend in the LAPD, Melvin Suggs, has gone into hiding rather than allow his femme fatale wife to go to the gas chamber.  And that’s only the beginning.

Easy finds himself pressed into a reckoning. All of his success cannot succor his heart. The 1970’s have ushered in new expectations of men and women, Black and White, and Easy has to make a choice that will almost certainly hasten a permanent descent, one that might sunder his soul.

Touched – Available: October 10, 2023

Touched, by Walter Mosley

Intergalactic visions, deadly threats, and explosive standoffs between mostly good and nearly completely evil converge in an alternative fiction novel that could only be conceived by the inimitable Walter Mosley, one of the country’s most beloved and acclaimed writers.

Martin Just wakes up one morning after what feels like, and might actually be, a centuries-long sleep with two new innate pieces of knowledge: Humanity is a virus destined to destroy all existence. And that he is the Cure.

Martin, his wife, and his two children are the only Black family on their neighborhood block in the Hollywood hills of Los Angeles. Suddenly, Martin is both father and Antibody, husband and Cure, occasionally slipping into an alternate consciousness – equipped with unprecedented physical strength – to violently defend them.

The family is stalked by Tor Waxman – the pale, white-haired embodiment of death who wears a dapper suit, carries a cane, and seeks to destroy all life with his fatal touch. Martin must convince his family of the danger and get them to engage with him in a battle beyond all imagining. Mosley effortlessly marries the sublime and the pedestrian: from monumental battles with truly universal stakes to the banality of standoffs with neighborhood police patrols, and the quotidian yet joyfully intimate conversations the family shares at home while gathered for dinner.

With his boundless talent and skilled range, Walter Mosley brings an ethereal, incisive look at a primal struggle driven by the spirit of the universe, in the vein of masters Octavia Butler, N.K. Jemisin, and Jeff VanderMeer. Expansive and innovative, sexy and satirical, Touched brilliantly imagines the ways in which human life and technological innovation threaten existence itself.

Grove Atlantic

Every Man A King

Every Man A King - A King Oliver Novel, by Walter MolseyIn this highly anticipated sequel from Edgar Award-winning “master of craft and narrative,” Walter Mosley, Joe King Oliver is entangled in a dangerous case when he’s asked to investigate whether a white nationalist is being unjustly set up. (National Book Foundation)

When friend of the family and multi-billionaire Roger Ferris comes to Joe with an assignment, he’s got no choice but to accept, even if the case is a tough one to stomach. White nationalist Alfred Xavier Quiller has been accused of murder and the sale of sensitive information to the Russians. Ferris has reason to believe Quiller’s been set up and he needs King to see if the charges hold.

This linear assignment becomes a winding quest to uncover the extent of Quiller’s dealings, to understand Ferris’ skin in the game, and to get to the bottom of who is working for whom. Even with the help of bodyguard and mercenary Oliya Ruez—no regular girl Friday—the machine King’s up against proves relentless and unsparing. As King gets closer to exposing the truth, he and his loved ones barrel towards grave danger.

Mosley once again proves himself a “master of craft and narrative” (National Book Foundation) in this carefully plotted mystery that is at once a classic caper, a family saga and an examination of fealty, pride and how deep debt can go.

Blood Grove

Blood Grove: An Easy Rawlins Mystery

Walter Mosley’s infamous detective Easy Rawlins is back, with a new mystery to solve on the sun-soaked streets of Southern California.

Ezekiel “Easy” Porterhouse Rawlins is an unlicensed private investigator turned hard-boiled detective always willing to do what it takes to get things done in the racially charged, dark underbelly of Los Angeles.

But when Easy is approached by a shell-shocked Vietnam War veteran—a young white man who claims to have gotten into a fight protecting a white woman from a black man—he knows he shouldn’t take the case.

Though he sees nothing but trouble in the brooding ex-soldier’s eyes, Easy, a vet himself, feels a kinship form between them. Easy embarks on an investigation that takes him from mountaintops to the desert, through South Central and into sex clubs and the homes of the fabulously wealthy, facing hippies, the mob, and old friends perhaps more dangerous than anyone else.

Set against the social and political upheaval of the late 1960s, Blood Grove is ultimately a story about survival, not only of the body but also the soul.

Widely hailed as “incomparable” (Chicago Tribune) and “dazzling” (Tampa Bay Times), Walter Mosley proves that he’s at the top of his game in this bold return to the endlessly entertaining series that has kept fans on their toes for years.

National Book Foundation to present Lifetime Achievement Award to Walter Mosley

For Distinguished Contribution to American LettersThe National Book Foundation, presenter of the National Book Awards, announced that it will award Walter Mosley with the 2020 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters (DCAL). Mosley has written more than sixty critically acclaimed books across subject, genre, and category. Walter Mosley’s 1990 debut novel Devil in a Blue Dress was the first in the bestselling mystery series featuring detective Easy Rawlins, and launched Mosley into literary prominence. Mosley’s books have been translated into twenty-five languages, and he has won numerous awards, including, but not limited to, an Edgar Award for Down the River Unto the Sea, an O. Henry Award, The Mystery Writers of America’s Grand Master Award, a Grammy®, several NAACP Image awards, and PEN America’s Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2020, he was named the recipient of the Robert Kirsch Award for lifetime achievement from the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. The DCAL will be presented to Mosley by two-time National Book Award Finalist Edwidge Danticat. Read the rest of this entry »

Walter Mosley to receive honorary National Book Award

NEW YORK (AP) — Walter Mosley is receiving an honorary National Book Award, cited for dozens of books which range from science fiction and erotica to the acclaimed mystery series that has followed the life of Los Angeles private detective Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins. Read the rest of this entry »

The Awkward Black Man

The Awkward Black Man

“In this collection of simple and complex portraits of a wide range of Black men, Mosley…defies the stereotypical images that abound in American culture…present[ing] an array of men in varying circumstances facing racism, obstructed opportunities, and other terrors of modern life, including climate change, natural and manmade disasters, homelessness, urban violence, and failed relationships . . . Master storyteller Mosley has created a beautiful collection about Black men who are, indeed, awkward in their poignant humanity.” —Booklist (starred review) Read the rest of this entry »

Trouble is What I Do

Trouble is What I Do

AmazonB&NYour local bookstore Available: Feb 25, 2020

Morally ambiguous P.I. Leonid McGill is back — and investigating crimes against society’s most downtrodden — in this installment of the beloved detective series from an Edgar Award-winning and bestselling crime novelist.

Leonid McGill’s spent a lifetime building up his reputation in the New York investigative scene. His seemingly infallible instinct and inside knowledge of the crime world make him the ideal man to help when Phillip Worry comes knocking.

Phillip “Catfish” Worry is a 92-year-old Mississippi bluesman who needs Leonid’s help with a simple task: deliver a letter revealing the black lineage of a wealthy heiress and her corrupt father. Unsurprisingly, the opportunity to do a simple favor while shocking the prevailing elite is too much for Leonid to resist.

But when a famed and feared assassin puts a hit on Catfish, Leonid has no choice but to confront the ghost of his own felonious past. Working to protect his client and his own family, Leonid must reach the heiress on the eve of her wedding before her powerful father kills those who hold their family’s secret.

Joined by a team of young and tough aspiring investigators, Leonid must gain the trust of wary socialites, outsmart vengeful thugs, and, above all, serve the truth — no matter the cost.

Walter Mosley on the fantasy of Whiteness and how Dubya was worse than Trump

The award-winning author spoke to Salon about the paucity of writers of color, working with the late John Singleton

Chauncey DeVega,
Salon.com

Walter Mosley (Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)Walter Mosley is one of America’s greatest crime-fiction writers. He is the author of almost 50 books across multiple genres including the bestselling mystery series featuring detective Easy Rawlins. Mosley’s essays on politics and culture have appeared in many leading publications, most notably The New York Times Magazine and The Nation. In September the New York Times featured his widely read op-ed “Why I Quit the Writers’ Room”.

Mosley is also a writer and consulting producer on the FX period crime drama “Snowfall,” which recently wrapped its third season (Seasons 1 and 2 are currently streaming on Hulu) and has been renewed for a fourth.
Read the rest of this entry »

An Uncomfortable Conversation In The Writers’ Room

By: Mark Riechers, ttbook.org

Editor’s note: This story includes language some may find offensive. We’ve chosen to leave Mosley’s direct quotes uncensored here, in the broadcast, and in the podcast version of this interview. For a censored version of this episode, go here. For a censored version of this transcript, read the WPR.org version.

It hadn’t occurred to novelist and screenwriter Walter Mosley that what happened in the writers’ room could find its way into a human resources department memo. But when a polite human resources representative called him on the phone to ask why he’d said the “N-word” during a story meeting, he responded, “I am the N-word in the writers’ room.”

Later, he wrote about his experience in an op-ed for the New York Times.

At that moment, Mosley realized he was done working in that room — the sense of trust between writers was shattered. He quit the job that same day.

“How can I exercise these freedoms when my place of employment tells me that my job is on the line if I say a word that makes somebody, an unknown person, uncomfortable?” Mosley wrote.

Mosley said true and complete freedom of expression is a key feature of American culture. That means that we might be made uncomfortable from time to time, but Mosley argues that those should be moments of discussion and debate, not an occasion to email human resources.

He spoke to Charles Monroe-Kane of “To the Best of Our Knowledge” about what happened after that fateful phone call, and why no one should have dominion over what words we can use. Read the rest of this entry »