Tuesday, September 30, 2014


I haven't done much road work bookwise, of late—not since a gig in Quebec a while back with Larry Block, Daniel Woodrell, Ian Rankin and some others.

But Thursday through Saturday night I'll be in Iowa City for the Iowa City Book Festival, just in time for the Betimes Books release of the Hector Lassiter series in its entirety for the first time.

(One True Sentence, Forever's Just Pretend, Toros & Torsos, The Great Pretender and Roll the Credits—three of those titles brand new—are now available in a matched set of snazzy looking trade paperbacks, complete with new introductions and reader discussion group questions. Five more titles, new and old, are coming soon).

If you're in the Iowa City area later this week, or already planning to make the scene, I'll be participating in four events. Please drop by and say hello, or catch me at the various venues: I'd love to rap with you about books, writing and, generally, all things literary.

Thursday, Oct. 2, 2014
7:30 p.m. James Ellroy interview and reading
Old BrickJames Ellroy in conversation with Craig McDonald, at Old Brick. Ellroy, the self-proclaimed “Demon Dog of American Crime Fiction,” will read from and discuss his new novel, Perfidia, with fellow novelist McDonald. McDonald has interviewed Ellroy in the past, most notably for his interview collections, Art in the Blood and Rogue Males. Free and open to the public. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all Iowa City Book Festival events. If you need an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact our office at info@cityofliteratureusa.org or 319-887-6100.

Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014
11:30 a.m. Levi Stahl and Craig McDonald
Levi Stahl (editor of the new Donald Westlake non-fiction miscellany, The Getaway Car) and Craig McDonald (Forever’s Just Pretend) read from and discuss their new books.

2:30 p.m. Panel: Loyalty and Betrayal
Iowa City Senior Center
Milan Kundera has asserted that ‘the first betrayal is irreparable. It calls forth a chain reaction of further betrayals, each of which takes us farther and farther away from the point of our original betrayal.’ Loyalties grow out of biology, place of origin, upbringing, affections, nationality, etc.—writers discuss their own loyalties, those that they adhere to and those they betray. Featuring Kinana Issa, Chi Li, Craig McDonald, June Melby, and Franca Treur.

9 p.m. Noir at the Bar
Join us for a free late-night gathering of crime fiction authors reading from their work, talking shop and enjoying drinks with the audience. This special Iowa City Book Festival edition of Noir at the Bar will feature authors:
Scott Phillips - (Hop Alley, 2014; Cottonwood, 2004; The Ice Harvest, 2000)
Jon McGoran - (Deadout: A Thriller, 2014; Drift, 2013)
Craig McDonald - (Forever's Just Pretend, 2014; El Gavilan, 2011; Head Games, 2007)
John Kenyon - (Get Hit, Hit Back: A Fight Card Story, 2013; The First Cut, 2012) 
Following the reading, Phillips will introduce a free screening of THE ICE HARVEST, adapted from his novel of the same name and directed by Harold Ramis.