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Walter Mosley Refuses to Be Boxed In

The Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences Presents "Spotlight On Screenwriting: Boyz n the Hood 25th Anniversary Screening With John Singleton And Walter Mosley"

The prolific author of the Easy Rawlins series writes what about whatever he wants, even if he has to switch publishers to get it done.

BY: RONDA RACHA PENRICE
Posted: July 10, 2016

Walter Mosley’s website lists books he’s written. Right now there are 48: 43 fiction and five nonfiction. And later this year, he’ll add to the list—a highly intellectual book titled, Folding the Red Into the Black: Developing a Viable Untopia for Human Survival in the 21st Century, which is due out in October. “It’s a repudiation of both capitalism and socialism on another level,” he explains.

Charcoal Joe, his most recent work of fiction, which came out last month, is perhaps more familiar territory for most of us. It is Mosley’s latest from his Easy Rawlins mystery series. Back in 1995, Denzel Washington played Easy, and Don Cheadle, in a breakout role, played Mouse on the big screen in Devil in a Blue Dress. The last book in the series, Rose Gold, was published two years ago, and Rawlins is picking up from there. It’s Los Angeles in the late 1960s, where race and life intersect. Mosley has visited Rawlins’ life for 14 books now, and he hasn’t felt stuck.

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Not So Easy Being Rawlins

Charcoal JoeVeteran storyteller Walter Mosley is back with another installment in the life and times of Easy Rawlins in Charcoal Joe. This is terrific news on several fronts: Easy is one of the finest characters in modern-day suspense fiction, complex and artfully drawn; the heroes and villains change sides with some regularity, including the main character; and the story offers more than its share of twists and turns to confound the reader. The titular Charcoal Joe is something of a legend in the circles of Los Angeles bad guys. Easy has stayed outside Joe’s sphere, but all that changes when he is tapped by his longtime frenemy Mouse to look into the murder charges against a young friend of Joe. Violence raises its ugly head, and our hero must take some serious evasive action to protect the lives of his family and loved ones. The Easy Rawlins saga has followed the landlord-turned-detective from the early post-World War II years through the Jim Crow 1950s and up to 1968 in this latest installment. The late ’60s were tumultuous times in Southern California, and Mosley deftly weaves social commentary into the narrative.

(via bookpage.com)

This week’s must-read books

This week’s must-read books

Charcoal Joe by Walter Mosley
(Doubleday)

In Mosley’s latest Easy Rawlins mystery, it’s 1968 Los Angeles and Easy is working at a new detective agency. He meets Rufus Tyler, an old man everyone calls Charcoal Joe, who tells Easy about a young physicist, Dr. Seymour Braithwaite, who’s been arrested for murder — and asks Easy to clear his name. Soon, Easy’s life is falling to pieces around him, again.

(via nypost.com)

The New Easy Rawlins Novel, Charcoal Joe, with Author Walter Mosley

‘Charcoal Joe”: Walter Mosley’s Easy Rawlins is on the case

By Steve Novak,
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Charcoal Joe, by Walter Mosley (Doubleday)

Walter Mosley’s private investigator Easy Rawlins has been around for nearly three decades now. Readers first met him in “Devil in a Blue Dress” when he agrees to find a missing person. The task that begins as a lark proves an inspiration to the recent World War II veteran that he may have found a suitable occupation. He takes to the streets of Los Angeles in the early 1940s and feels his way to an unexpected career.

Mr. Mosley’s 14th Easy Rawlins mystery, “Charcoal Joe,” shows just how far the character has come since that first case. With money he garnered from his last case, “Rose Gold” (2014), he has started his own private investigation agency, complete with two associates. As he walks to his new office, Easy realizes just what has happened to his life.

“I took in a deep breath through my nostrils and smiled, thinking that a poor black man from the deep South like myself was lucky not to be dead and buried, much less a living, breathing independent businessman,” he thinks.

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Walter Mosley’s ‘Charcoal Joe’: Easy Rawlins is back

Charcoal Joe, by Walter Mosley (Doubleday)

By Neely Tucker
The Washington Post

Walter Mosley’s latest Easy Rawlins novel, “Charcoal Joe,” comes on the heels of the author winning the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America in April. No one familiar with the quality and quantity of Mosley’s creative output was surprised by this honor. His output encompasses more than four dozen books — including 14 Rawlins novels — science fiction, nonfiction and essays. He’s been awarded PEN America’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Still, in some ways, the full measure of his achievement can only be gauged by seeing him at the Edgars, as the Mystery Writers’ honors are known. I watched the whole thing from a table near the back. Mosley was one of fewer than two dozen African Americans in a ballroom holding hundreds. Publishing, like the film industry, was a pale field when Mosley’s first Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins novel, “Devil in a Blue Dress,” was published in 1990 and made into a Denzel Washington vehicle five years later. Two decades on, both still are. (Looking at you, #oscarssowhite.)
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Summertime, and the living is EZ

Charcoal JoeBy David Prestidge
Crime Fiction Lover

On the Radar — Ezekiel ‘Easy’ Rawlins returns this week for another neon-lit adventure among the hills and boulevards of Los Angeles. We’ve also got a new printing of Dashiell Hammett’s short stories, and a great selection of further crime novels to try.

Charcoal Joe, by Walter Mosley

PI Easy Rawlins doesn’t look for trouble but when his old friend, the lethal hitman nicknamed Mouse asks for help, he knows that trouble will soon be looking for him. Mouse isn’t a man who takes no for an answer, and soon Rawlins, trying to help the man they call Charcoal Joe, is doing his best to avoid hits from all directions on the glitzy streets of LA. In our back pages you can read our PI Case Files on Mosley’s most memorable creation. Out on 16 June.

Charcoal Joe

Charcoal JoeAn Easy Rawlins Mystery

AmazonB&NYour local bookstore Available: June 14, 2016

About the Book: Walter Mosley’s indelible detective Easy Rawlins is back, with a new detective agency and a new mystery to  solve.

Picking up where his last adventures in Rose Gold left off in L.A. in the late 1960s, Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins finds his life in transition. He’s ready—finally—to propose to his girlfriend, Bonnie Shay, and start a life together. And he’s taken the money he got from the Rose Gold case and, together with two partners, Saul Lynx and Tinsford “Whisper” Natly, has started a new detective agency. But, inevitably, a case gets in the way: Easy’s friend Mouse introduces him to Rufus Tyler, a very old man everyone calls Charcoal Joe. Joe’s friend’s son, Seymour (young, bright, top of his class in physics at Stanford), has been arrested and charged with the murder of a white man from Redondo Beach. Joe tells Easy he will pay and pay well to see this young man exonerated, but seeing as how Seymour literally was found standing over the man’s dead body at his cabin home, and considering the racially charged motives seemingly behind the murder, that might prove to be a tall order.
Between his new company, a heart that should be broken but is not, a whole raft of new bad guys on his tail, and a bad odor that surrounds Charcoal Joe, Easy has his hands full, his horizons askew, and his life in shambles around his feet.

Walter Mosley’s ‘Killing Johnny Fry’ Movie in the Works

Killing Johnny Fry

Walter Mosley (“Devil in a Blue Dress”) and producer Denise Grayson have hired writer-director Paul Chart to adapt Mosley’s thriller “Killing Johnny Fry” for a feature film.

Mosley will produce through his company BOB Filmhouse together with Denise Grayson Productions.

Mosley’s novel, published in 2006, centers on nice guy Cordell Carmel, who’s shocked to discover his long-time girlfriend is secretly enjoying a darkly sexual double life with the handsome but menacing Johnny Fry. Cordell soon finds himself seduced into a twisted world of sex, drugs and murder.

“Having Paul Chart as a writer makes the translation of ideas into script easy, true to the purpose, and all kinds of fun,” Mosley said.

Chart is currently writing the sci-fi TV series “The Fourth Kingdom” for “Game of Thrones” executive producer Vince Gerardis. He recently founded independent production company Lionhart Films with partners Daniel Frey and Steve Valentine.

Mosley is best known for the mysteries featuring the hard-boiled detective Easy Rawlins, a black private investigator and World War II veteran living in Los Angeles, including “Devil in the Blue Dress.” Denzel Washington starred in the 1995 movie.

Three other Mosley properties have been adapted for TV — Showtime aired a series in 1993 based on Mosley’s “Fallen Angels”; Laurence Fishburne starred in HBO’s TV movie “Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned” in 1998; and ABC’s “Masters of Science Fiction” aired the “Little Brother” episode in 2007.

Chart directed and wrote “American Perfekt,” which starred Fairuza Balk and Robert Forster and screened at Un Certain Regard at Cannes in 1997.

Chart is represented by Advanced Management. Mosley is repped by CAA and Gloria Loomis at Watkins/Loomis Agency.

(via variety.com)

Walter Mosley, author, visits CSU Dominguez Hills Feb. 16

Walter Mosley, author, visits CSU Dominguez Hills Feb. 16

Walter Mosley, author, visits CSU Dominguez Hills Feb. 16

CSU Dominguez Hills’ 50th Watts Rebellion Commemoration welcomes author Walter Mosley; Watts is setting for Mosley’s ‘Easy Rawlins’ book series

CARSON – Best-selling novelist Walter Mosley will be a guest speaker in the California State University, Dominguez Hills 2016 Patricia Eliet Memorial Lecture Series, Feb. 16, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. in the Loker Student Union ballroom.

Continuing its year-long commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Watts Rebellion, the university welcomes the author of more than 40 books ranging from crime novels to political essays. Walter Mosley is considered one the most versatile and prolific writers in the U.S. today. He is the winner of numerous awards, including an O. Henry Award, a Grammy, and PEN America’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Read the rest of this entry »