By Michael Atkinson
(Minotaur Books, Hardcover, 9780312379711, 256pp.)
Publication Date: August 18, 2009
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It is 1956 and Hemingway has spent much of the year at his home in Key West, hiding from tourists and autograph hunters. But a friend’s sudden death rouses Papa from his idyll. To say that the cause of death is suspicious is to put it lightly. It’s not every day that a part-time smuggler is impaled on a harpoon.A witty, literate, and action-filled debut, Hemingway Deadlights catches the famed author in his later years, battling to solve the injustices in a flawed world.
MICHAEL ATKINSON is a former film critic for The Village Voice. He has written for The Believer, Spin, Details, and many others, and has been included in Best American Poetry and Best American Movie Writing. He lives in Centerport, New York.
Praise for HEMINGWAY DEADLIGHTS "What would a genre mystery by Ernest Hemingway read like? Say, a story about a heavy-drinking, womanizing, professional frustrated amateur sleuth in Key West and Cuba? Great characters, great setup--what's that, you say? Hemingway Deadlights is not by him, but about him? Wow. Just, wow. You could've fooled me."--Laurie R. King "Atkinson packs Hemingway Deadlights with hilarious dialogue, irreverent literary shoptalk, and so much excellent sun-soaked atmosphere that you'd best consume it along with a few pitchers of something cool."--Ed Park, author of Personal Days "Michael Atkinson has crafted a hard-boiled mystery drenched in Tequila and scorched by the blazing Key West sun. That Ernest Hemingway, with his volatile temper, ready fists and emotional entanglements, would take on a murder investigation when one of his drinking buddies is mysteriously killed, makes for the most fascinating amateur sleuth to hit the pages since the invention of the gin and tonic. Atkinson mixes in politics, Cuban revolutionaries, crime bosses, and literary giants of the twentieth century with a deft hand, creating a vision of Papa Hemingway pursuing a seemingly lost cause in the winter of his life."--James R. Benn, author of Billy Boyle "This mystery certainly gave me everything I wanted in spades....A terrific book."--Mystery News Magazine "Atkinson gives us Hemingway on the verge of serious decline: the booze taking its toll, the writing stalled, the paranoia that would eventually lead to his suicide beginning to assert itself. All that gives the tale a nice psychodramatic edge as Hemingway jumps from Key West to Havana, dodging CIA stooges and assorted gangsters, and even spending a drunken evening chugging rum with a couple of revolutionaries named Fidel and Che."--Deadly Pleasures