It’d be impossible for Bradley Spinelli to top the suicide-themed set that Questlove did for his debut novel, Killing Williamsburg, but the B+B contributor’s latest book launch should come close. Thursday’s party for The Painted Gun, a noir mystery published by Brooklyn’s own Akashic Books, will feature a raft of burlesque stars as well as tacos from ever-expanding Dos Toros.
It makes sense that the West Coast-inspired burrito joint is on food duty: The Painted Gun is set in the Williamsburg-based author’s former hometown of San Francisco, in the late ’90s– you know, when Yahoo! stock was booming. Its hard-bitten, hard-drinking hero is David “Itchy” Crane, a journalist-turned-PI on the hunt for the mysterious Ashley, a missing artist who has a creepy talent for painting scenes straight out of Crane’s sad-sack life. (If you want to make like Itchy during the party, suck down a half dozen Jamesons.) Don’t take it from me, since I’m his editor– Publishers Weekly says Spinelli is “definitely a talent to watch,” and his latest “deftly segues from one genre to another—from hard-boiled noir to paranoid thriller, puzzle mystery (with each and every riddle logically explained), spy caper, and ultimately to something evocative of Bogart and Bacall.”
After spieling with a pair of downtown memoirists about changes in the East Village and Lower East Side over the years, we brought together to talk North Brooklyn. Yesterday, before their reading at Pete’s Candy Store, we spoke to Mike DeCapite and Bradley Spinelli, who both live in Williamsburg, as well as Jacob Tomsky, a Bushwick novelist whose hotel memoir, Heads in Beds, hit the New York Times bestseller list (again! this time as a paperback) earlier this month. More →
Tomorrow at Trash Bar there’s a book party for Killing Williamsburg, and it won’t be the usual wine-and-cheese affair: starting at 7 p.m., the one and only Questlove will spin songs by musicians who killed themselves. Morbid as it may sound, the night’s “suicide set” is in keeping with the book’s macabre plot: a cynical Williamsburger is jolted from his ennui when a plague of mysterious, gruesome suicides threatens to turn his “hip, hopping, happening” neighborhood into a ghost town. More →