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About Keir Graff
Keir Graff writes thrillers and suspense novels for adults, both under his own name and with Linda Joffe Hull as Linda Keir. Their second novel together, DROWNING WITH OTHERS, is an Amazon First Reads Selection.
He edited the anthologies A MILLION ACRES: MONTANA WRITERS REFLECT ON LAND AND OPEN SPACE and (with James Grady) MONTANA NOIR, one of Parade‘s “Books We Love.”
Graff is also the author of three middle-grade novels, including the THE PHANTOM TOWER, a fantasy/adventure named one of the Best Children’s Books of 2018 by the Chicago Tribune. His previous book for young readers, THE MATCHSTICK CASTLE, was an official Illinois Reads 2018 selection.
An in-demand speaker at libraries, schools, and conferences, he is the co-host of Publishing Cocktails, a literary meetup in Chicago. You can find him on Twitter (@KeirGraff, @Editor_Keir), Facebook (Keir.Graff.Author), and at www.keirgraff.com.
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A Parade Magazine “Books We Love” Pick
The Big Sky State may seem to lack the shadowy urban mazes traditional to the noir genre. But in Montana, darkness is found in the regions of the heart, driving the desperate and deadly to commit the most heinous of crimes. Here, James Grady and Keir Graff, both Montana natives, masterfully curate this collection of hard-edged Western tales.
Montana Noir includes Eric Heidle’s “Ace in the Hole,” an Edgar Award nominee for Best Short Story, and impressive contributions by David Abrams, Caroline Patterson, Thomas McGuane, Janet Skeslien Charles, Sidner Larson, Yvonne Seng, James Grady, Jamie Ford, Carrie La Seur, Walter Kirn, Gwen Florio, Debra Magpie Earling, and Keir Graff.
“Terrific . . . Montana Noir is one of the high points in Akashic’s long-running and justly celebrated Noir series . . . varying landscapes reflect the darkness within the people who walk the streets or drive the country roads.” —Booklist
“Montana may not have the back alleys so common to noir but it has western justice which can be quick, brutal and final and that is as satisfying as anything found in the urban streets that typically attract the dark beauty of the noir genre.” —New York Journal of Books
“Certain noir standbys prove both malleable and fertile in these 14 new stories . . . If Montana has a dark side, is anywhere safe from noir?” —Kirkus Reviews
Brian can think of a few places he'd rather spend his summer than with his aunt and uncle in Boring, Illinois. Jail, for example. Or an earplug factory. Anything would be better than doing summer school on a computer while his scientist dad is stationed at the South Pole.
Boring lives up to its name until Brian and his cousin Nora have a fight, get lost, and discover a huge, wooden house in the forest. With balconies, turrets, and windows seemingly stuck on at random, it looks ready to fall over in the next stiff breeze. To the madcap, eccentric family that lives inside, it’s not just a home—it’s a castle.
Suddenly, summer gets a lot more exciting. With their new friends, Brian and Nora tangle with giant wasps, sharp-tusked wild boars, and a crazed bureaucrat intent on bringing the dangerously dilapidated old house down with a wrecking ball.
This funny, fantastical story will resonate with any reader who’s ever wished a little adventure would find them.
"For boys and girls alike, this story sings.”—Blue Balliett, award-winning author of Chasing Vermeer
Twelve-year-old twins Colm and Mal might look identical, but they’re different in just about every other way. The one thing they can agree on is that neither brother wants to move to Chicago for a fresh start with their mom two years after their dad’s death.
The boys soon discover that their new apartment building, Brunhild Tower, is full of strange quirks: a mysterious Princess who warns them not to wander the building at midday, eerie sounds coming from the walls, and an elevator that’s missing a button for the thirteenth floor. Then one afternoon, that button appears, catapulting the brothers and their inquisitive new neighbor, Tamika, into a parallel dimension and a twin building stuck in time, where the spirits of all the former residents of Brunhild Tower live on, trapped by an ancient curse. Now, Colm, Mal, and Tamika must race against time to solve the mystery of the phantom tower—or risk spending an eternity as ghosts themselves.
The last thing Dagmar wants is to spend her summer vacation squished into a tiny house with her dad, her stepmom, and her annoying five-year-old half brother. But after a sudden financial setback, her family is evicted from their Oakland apartment, and that's just where they end up, parked among the towering redwoods of Northern California.
As Dagmar explores the forest around their new and (hopefully) temporary home, she discovers they are living next door to an eccentric tech billionaire and his very unusual extended family. There's his brother, a woodsman who sets dangerous booby traps all over the place, and his sister, a New Age animal lover who meditates to whale songs in an isolation tank. And then there's the billionaire's son, Blake, who has everything he could ever wish for--except maybe a friend.
But when a wildfire engulfs the forest, everyone--rich and poor, kid and adult--will have to work together to escape. And with both families at risk of losing everything, it turns out it's not the size of the home but the people you share it with that matters.
In the near future, America simmers in suspicion and fear. The president expands the global front of the war on terror, then declares martial law and sits, unelected, for a third term.
In Chicago, Jason Walker, amateur photographer and architecture enthusiast, inadvertently arouses the suspicions of Homeland Security. Detained, interrogated, and tortured, he's finally able to convince his captors of his innocence. But his freedom comes at a price. There's a terrorist group operating out of a Lebanese cultural center, they say. They need a man inside. And Jason Walker's mother was Lebanese, wasn't she?
Caught between an arrogant government agent and a charismatic Lebanese immigrant who calls himself a patriot—and a girlfriend who chooses an awkward time to become a political activist—Jason Walker struggles to decide who deserves his loyalty. And the stakes couldn't be higher . . .
Jack McEnroe is a construction worker with an unusual job: building a prison for terrorists. Like his neighbors in Red Rock, Wyoming, Jack isn't particularly concerned about politics. In a depressed rural economy, he's just grateful to have a job.
Jack's boss, Dave Fetters, is grateful, too: he has a no-bid, cost-plus contract issued by the previous administration. It's his last chance to get rich, and he's making the most of it.
But Dave is cooking the books, passing inflated costs along to defense contractor Halcyon Corporation--and Jack's ex-wife, Kyla, plans to blow the whistle. Suddenly, everyone Jack cares about, including his two young children, is in danger.
As the first winter snows fall in the rugged mountains, Jack must navigate a razor-wire labyrinth to rescue those he loves. And the true price of liberty, he discovers, is paid not in dollars, but human life.
The United States is holding an election whose results will determine how it wages the war on terror. With the presidency seeming certain to go to the challenger, control of the country may come down to a single Senate seat and a hotly contested race in the "Buckle of the Bible Belt": Tulsa, Oklahoma.
In Tulsa, recovering methamphetamine addict Seth Stevens is trying to hold his fragile life together. He attends church faithfully, plays in a Christian rock band, and wonders if he's falling in love with the pastor's niece. But his decision to campaign for the church-supported candidate has unexpected consequences. He soon finds himself forced to answer an age-old question: what do you do when following your faith means breaking the law?