Oh, my, word! I think Brian Ritt wrote this book for me. (And Mantan, I'm sure.)
And I can thank Mantan, thank you, Mantan,
for clueing me in on its existence. It was just published in March. (2013)
I love what I call "the backstory" including bios of the writers who I love reading and especially, other writers who influenced their writing.
This book is a keeper and one that goes on my shelf with The Black Mask Stories, Mystery in the Sunshine State, Crime Fiction & Film in the Sunshine State--Florida Noir, Pulp Masters and Miami Noir.
Have a few more, but can't think of them right now.
I have found so many authors I want and need to read that I'm feeling everything else is going to be left behind.
The intro by Ritt was chocked full of information about hard cover books, paperbacks, slicks and a few others with new information for my brain where I compartmentalize everything noir and hard-boiled.
Also (and prior to the intro) Rick Ollerman wrote a history of how the paperbacks came about with this book covering from the 1940's to the 1960's. Such a great and colorful history of this genre which I love so much.
It's my 'go-to' book for writers of hard-boiled and noir and man, oh, man, I've had a ball reading it. Some tidbits:
James Cain of The Postman Always Rings Twice
fame, wanted to be an opera singer. Glad that one didn't work out.
Malcolm Braly, an ex-con, received the Edgar for his first novel Felon Tank
published in 1961. Is first three novels were written while in prison.