Tuesday, October 11, 2016
Truly noir - excellent story in Providence Noir collection
Reading along and enjoying Ann Hood's selections for Providence Noir (Akashic) and, at about the half-way point, note that Amity Gaige's story set (in part) at the Providence Armory is among the best in the collection: One of the few that recognizes that noir does not necessarily = a murder plot or a grisly death but can be a whole attitude of darkness and disturbance. Also her story is one of the best at establish a sense of place - not just by name-checks but by a swift analysis of a local cultural scene, the collision of forces, as an editor I used to work w/ would put it - in this case the urban hipsters descending from College Hill (Brown & RISD) to inhabit a more affordable and (at one time) marginal city neighborhood, the Armory District in this case. Also a powerful story about the struggles of a young woman - emotional, and identity issues - who's a victim of abuse; she herself is from the gritty mill city of Woonsocket where she was the intelligent misfit only to become the working-class misfit at Brown - and who gets engaged in a really creepy and frightening revenge plot. Great selection, and btw Gaige is one of the (few) authors in this collection whom I don't know.