Daily Deals: The Best American Noir of the Century and Learning to Draw is Fun

The Best American Noir of the CenturyIf you like horrors you should look up at today’s offer from Amazon: The Best American Noir of the Century written by James Ellroy and Otto Penzler. The today’s price is only $1.99 If you compare with yesterday’s price $16.95 you will see that it is real good deal.

James Ellroy and Otto Penzler mined the past century to find this treasure trove of thirty-nine stories. From noir’s twenties-era infancy come gems like James M. Cain’s “Pastorale,” and its postwar heyday boasts giants like Mickey Spillane and Evan Hunter. Packing an undeniable punch, diverse contemporary incarnations include Elmore Leonard, Patricia Highsmith, Joyce Carol Oates, Dennis Lehane, and William Gay, with many page-turners appearing from the past decade.

Some words about the Authors

James Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. His L.A. Quartet novels—The Black DahliaThe Big NowhereL.A. Confidential, and White Jazz—were international bestsellers. His most recent book is Blood’s a Rover.
Otto Penzler is the founder of the Mysterious Bookshop and Mysterious Press.

Also we would like to quote only one review: “Well worth its impressive weight in gold, it would be a crime not to have his seminal masterpiece in your collection.” –New York Journal of Books


Learning to Draw is Fun

“Learning to Draw is Fun” is a name for a game for your kids which you can get today only for free.

If Rembrandt and Picasso had smartphones as kids, Learning to Draw is Fun would have been their favorite app. If you want to teach your kids how to draw, try this easy and fun app. Learning to Draw is Fun allows kids to try their hand at 20 different pictures, and then gives them a full color palette to finish their masterpiece.

Art School on Your Android Device

First, the budding artist chooses which design to draw. Learning to Draw is Fun features twenty cute pictures including a butterfly, snowman, pig, flower, and birthday cake. The artist then follows four easy steps to reproduce the picture. You can erase the picture at any time.

Artsy Tools

Once the picture is done, the child can go to a full color palette to finish the picture. Choose from 15 different colors with six different brush stroke sizes.

Share the picture through e-mail, Facebook, and Twitter, or set it as a wallpaper. You can also get the details of the picture’s file size and resolution within the app.

Warning: This app may inspire your child to become an art major. But at least your kid won’t be drawing on the living room wall.

In One Person by John Irving

Good news for John Irving fans.  He is coming out with a new book on May 8 called In One Person.  His novels: The Cider House Rules and A Prayer for Owen Meany have been adapted into award winning movies.  The movie adaptation for A Prayer for Owen Meany is called Simon Birch, and it is one of my favorite movies.  In One Person is currently available for pre order on the Kindle.  The only other Irving novel available for download on the Kindle is Last Night in Twisted River.  More to come soon.

Irving touches on major issues like abortion, love, AIDS, death, gender, sexuality, and disability with a great deal of candor.  In One Person is no exception.  It is set in the 80’s when AIDS was rampant.  So, it is sure to deal with the emotions and heartbreak that came along with dealing with that disease  during that era.

I have read three of Irving’s novels.  A Prayer for Owen Meany has stuck with me the longest.  It is about a dwarf named Owen, but the story is told from the point of view of his best friend.  Owen Meany has a lot to show the world, and has some psychic powers that shape the way he lives his life.

The World According to Garp is a very gender and sexuality focused book.  This book is best for the mature audience.  All of Irving’s books include issues that only adults can fully grasp, but I stress that fact for this one in particular.

The Last Night in Twisted River is Irving’s latest book currently available.  It features father-son protagonists who start off as cooks in a logging town.  An unexpected turn of events forces them to skip town.  The son later becomes a novelist, but fate catches up to both of them in the long run.  It took me a really long time to get through this book.  It moved too slowly for me.  Out of the three books I’ve read by Irving, this one is my least favorite.  It does have good reviews though, and others give high marks, so it is just a matter of preference.

Irving’s novels work your brain.  If you want a book that has depth, includes a well defined and complex plot, and steamrolls through controversial issues, this if your type of book.  On top of that, Irving has been a highly successful author for many, many years.  So, I am eager to read what he has to say in his newest novel when it comes out in May.