Nights of Noir: Shoot the Piano Player by David Goodis
May 10 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Plunge into the world of hardboiled detectives, femme fatales, and nihilistic grifters through novels of the classic era of American crime fiction. Explore our spring selection of four powerful books from the 1930s to the 1950s that left an indelible mark on American literature, film, and popular culture.
May 10, Shoot the Piano Player (original title Down There) by David Goodis
Once upon a time Eddie played concert piano to reverent audiences at Carnegie Hall. Now he bangs out honky-tonk for drunks in a dive in Philadelphia. But then two people walk into Eddie’s life–the first promising Eddie a future, the other dragging him back into a treacherous past.
Shoot the Piano Player is a bittersweet and nerve-racking exploration of different kinds of loyalty: the kind a man owes his family, no matter how bad that family is; the kind a man owes a woman; and, ultimately, the loyalty he owes himself. The result is a moody thriller that, like the best hard-boiled fiction, carries a moral depth charge.
Early in life, Eusebio Diaz realized he was drawn to the dark tales of Edgar Allen Poe, which developed into a passion for noir novels that exposed the underside of humanity and celebrated the poetry of the downtrodden. Diaz is presently working on a book set in his birthplace and hometown, Carrizo Springs.
William Glenn has had a long love affair with literary and cinematic noir, expressing and exploring his obsession on the blog Zone: improvisations on literature: music: film. He co-founded the bilingual literary journal Terra Incognita and is the author of A Brief Guide to American Poetry (2005). Glenn is a librarian at UTSA.