Thursday, September 1, 2016

Move over NordicNoir! The hotties are here . . .

Stanley - Thursday

For a long time there has been a tsunami of stories set in the cold, grey, grim, sunless northern countries, where people have to drink dozens of cups of coffee every day to keep warm and sane. Or drink copious amounts of alcohol. It has taken Nordic writers wonderful flights of fantasy to conjure up tales of people shaking off their lethargy to do dastardly deeds that rarely happen in reality.

Those of thus who set our stories where the blazing sun regularly brings out the worst in people were unhappy by northern invasion.  And envious.  We thought it strange that there was so much Noir where there was so little sun.  After all, the shadows are darkest where the sun is brightest.

It was a Murder is Everywhere alumna who eventually saw the light (perhaps the sun peeked out from behind Eyjafjallajökull for a moment).  Yrsa wrote a blurb for our fifth Kubu mystery that read "Under the African sun, Michael Stanley's Detective Kubu investigates crimes as dark as the darkest Nordic Noir.  Call it Sunshine Noir if you will - a must read."

Sunshine Noir!  Yrsa has always had a way with words!

Sunshine Noir!  That's what we hotties write - dark stories that take place in the blinding sunshine or withering heat.

About this time last year, Annamaria and I decided to start a movement, a Sunshine Noir movement, a pushback against those chilly Scandi stories.

We invited seventeen writers who send their protagonists into the scorching sun to join us in an anthology of hot stories - a Sunshine Noir anthology.

Peter James was so taken with the idea that he wrote a preface, saying ". . . a whole new movement, spearheaded by Sunshine Noir!"

Tim Hallinan was also moved by the idea and penned a second preface: "Move over, mysteries set in Nordic places.  The bright, warm, lush world is a greenhouse for evil."  And, of course, he knows, growing up in the Los Angeles basin.

And Peter Rozovsky penned an introduction, which he titled Clime Fiction.

Our authors and their settings are: 

Leye Adenle (Nigeria).  An assassination with a twist.  (And, by the way, I delighted to announce that Leye will be joining the Murder is Everywhere crew as of next Wednesday.) 

New MIE contributor, Leye Adenle

Annamaria Alfieri (British East Africa).  A truly dark tale worthy of  the dark continent.

Editor and writer Annamaria Alfieri

Colin Cotterill (Thailand).  Superstition and revenge.

Colin Cotterill - no need for insulation where he lives

Susan Froetschel (Yemen).  An NGO worker is kidnapped in Yemen.

Susan Froetschel

Jason Goodwin (Istanbul).  Sculduggery in this ancient city.

Jason Goodwin - scholar and writer

Paul Hardisty (Ethiopia).  A chilling story in the heat of Ethiopia.

Paul Hardisty - scientist and writer

Greg Herren (New Orleans).  Domestic Noir. 

Greg Herren - not cold in New Orleans

Tamar Myers (Arizona).  A funny and dark story about wannabe writer Delbert Fincter.

Tamar Myers - one of five of our African-born writers

Barbara Nadel (Istanbul).  An icon of the city dies an unbearable death. 

Barbara Nadel - looking in need of sunshine

Richie Narvaez (Puerto Rico).  The lengths to which ambitious people will go. 

Richie Narvaez - serious about writing about hot places

Kwei Quartey (Ghana).  A Swedish hitman, suffering from cryoglobulinemia, heads to the sun.

Kwei Quartey

Jeffrey Siger (Mykonos).  A story only Jeff could dream up, set in the Grecian heat. 

Jeff Siger under a cloud

Michael Stanley (Botswana).  A chilling story in the Kalahari sun.

Michael Stanley - Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip

Nick Sweet (Spain).  Don't kidnap a policeman's girlfriend!

Nick Sweet
Timothy Williams (Guadaloupe).  Revenge with a twist. 

Timothy Williams catching up on the news

Robert Wilson (the Sahara).  A naïve Englishman tries to hitchhike to Cape Town.

Robert Wilson

Ovidia Yu (Singapore).  More revenge!

Ovidia Yu

The Sunshine Noir anthology is available today in e-book form.  And in two weeks in paperback form.

So pull off your gloves, take off your parka, hang up your ushanka, and put on your sunscreen.  These hot stories will go well with a gin and tonic (to ward off malaria, of course) and make you long for a cold shower.


  1. I am so proud of this anthology. It's a world tour of crime fiction, diverse in every way but one: All the stories Are HOT! Proof pluperfect that mysteries and thrillers set in sunny locales are some of the darkest, and the most entertaining fiction on the planet!

  2. Maybe I'll switch my Northern Minnesota in the dead of winter reading to this Sunshine Noir for the extreme contrast.

  3. But... but... you didn't include any links. :-( Here's the book on Amazon:

    Bought and in the queue to-be-read. Thanks, AmA and Michael!

  4. Thanks EvKa. The UK link is

    It is or will shortly be available worldwide for KOBO, Nook, and at Apple.

  5. One of the perks of being one of the authors in this collection is that we got to read all the stories. All first rate! If you don't believe me, try Robert Wilson's brilliant Extreme Heat. (Hint: It's the first story and covered by Amazon's free 'look inside'.)

    1. Michael, I love that story too--so dark and with a pounding rhythm. And then there is the incredible foil for it in Tamar Myers' Corpus Crispy about a man lost in a different dessert, which is every bit as suspenseful but hilarious! Fun!

    2. And the one in the Yemen desert is in between in a way. But actually darker as well.
      (Hey, this wasn't set up. Honestly!)

  6. I can't wait to see all our great Nordic Noir friends fleeing with their tales between their legs.

  7. So exciting! Congratulations!

    Let us know when the paperback is available, please.