Santa Fe Noir
Santa Fe joins Phoenix as a riveting Southwest US installment in the Akashic Noir Series.Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city.Brand-new stories by: Ana Castillo, Jimmy Santiago Baca, Byron F. Aspaas, Barbara Robidoux, Elizabeth Lee, Ana June, Israel Francisco Haros Lopez, Ariel Gore, Darryl Lorenzo Wellington, Candace Walsh, Hida Viloria, Cornelia Read, Miriam Sagan, James Reich, Kevin Atkinson, Katie Johnson, and Tomas Moniz.From the introduction by Ariel Gore:The stories in this collection reflect a fundamental truth about this city: history depends on who’s telling it. Too often the story of Santa Fe has been told only by the conquerors and the tourism PR firms. In Santa Fe Noir, you will hear the voices of the others: locals and Native people, unemployed veterans and queer transplants, the homeless and the paroled-to-here. When I asked the contributors you’ll read in these pages if they had a Santa Fe story to tell, they invariably shrugged and said something to the effect of, “Oh, I’ve got a story all right. But it might not fit the image of Santa Fe you’re looking for.”I said, “Try me.” They came back with the stories that never make the glossy tour brochures: the working class and the underground, the decolonized and the ever-haunted; the Santa Fe only we know . . . Conquered and reconquered, colonized and commodified, Santa Fe understands—from historical genocide to the murders of family members—the intimacy of violence.

Santa Fe Noir Details

TitleSanta Fe Noir
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseMar 3rd, 2020
PublisherAkashic Books
Rating
GenreFiction, Mystery, Crime, Noir, Short Stories, Anthologies

Santa Fe Noir Review

  • Ellie
    January 1, 1970
    I have read a number (many!) of the Noir series of different cities and enjoyed them all. This one may be my favorite: perhaps because Ive always dreamed of living in Santa Fe and loved my visits there. But I have never seen the side of Santa Fe portrayed in these dark stories. Not that I want to, except through the vehicle of fiction.In Santa Fe Noir (part of the Akashic series, edited by Ariel Gore), the stories are not the voices of the tourist or former urbanites come to live in the artistic I have read a number (many!) of the Noir series of different cities and enjoyed them all. This one may be my favorite: perhaps because I’ve always dreamed of living in Santa Fe and loved my visits there. But I have never seen the side of Santa Fe portrayed in these dark stories. Not that I want to, except through the vehicle of fiction.In Santa Fe Noir (part of the Akashic series, edited by Ariel Gore), the stories are not the voices of the tourist or former urbanites come to live in the artistic haven that is the beautiful Santa Fe. Instead, as stated in the introduction, “you will hear the voices of the others: locals and Native people, unemployed veterans and queer transplants, the homeless and the paroled-to-here.” In my own naivete, I never thought there was another side to Santa Fe. This volume is a serious wake-up call while also being seriously entertaining (in a very dark fashion). While keeping the natural beauty of the setting, this Land of Enchantment holds other stories than the usual tourist versions.Edited by Ariel Gore (whose own contribution is also excellent) I don’t think there is a story in the entire collection I didn’t enjoy—a rare feat for an anthology in my experience. These are crime stories of the cold, hard kind in a harsh world with no room for the homeless, the poor, the indigenous—all the people that have been “othered” by the more comfortable, conforming, affluent world.It’s hard to choose favorites, but I particularly loved Elizabeth Lee’s “Waterfall,” set in a beautiful spa which promises new life but become an especially gory crime scene and Ana Castillo’s (an author whom I love) more supernatural one, “Divina: In Which Is Related a Goddess Made Flesh.” These are just two examples of the many styles offered in this volume.An outstanding entry in the Akashic series. My favorite so far. My thanks to Akashic Publishing, Ariel Gore, and LibraryThing for providing me with a copy for free.
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  • Caroline Leavitt
    January 1, 1970
    I love Santa Fe, (and I'm setting my next novel there) because it's often been described as a place that people go to when they don't want to be found --yet it's also a place full of magic.
  • Vickie
    January 1, 1970
    I don't always have the best of luck with anthologies, but it's the opposite with the Noir series from Akashic. I really like this series and I especially loved this book. A wide variety of styles: thriller, scary, odd, paranormal...don't read this if you want a happy ending...some are sort of vague endings, some are left to your imagination...some not satisfying but it was the aim of the writer I am pretty sure. You really cannot go wrong with this book. I can definitely recommend it.
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  • Valerie
    January 1, 1970
    This Noir Will Haunt You. Highly Recommended The Sangre de Christo mountains loom blood red above the city. La Llorona, the killing ghost of Hispanic legend, haunts the arroyos.The Land of Enchantment becomes the Land of Entrapment.Santa Fe Noir, edited by Ariel Gore, is perhaps one of my favorite noir collections from prolific Akashic Books. Noir is my favorite genre as it is honest in its depiction of the underrepresented and in telling stories that dont glorify a culture of power. When I This Noir Will Haunt You. Highly Recommended The Sangre de Christo mountains loom blood red above the city. La Llorona, the killing ghost of Hispanic legend, haunts the arroyos.The “Land of Enchantment” becomes the “Land of Entrapment.”Santa Fe Noir, edited by Ariel Gore, is perhaps one of my favorite noir collections from prolific Akashic Books. Noir is my favorite genre as it is honest in its depiction of the underrepresented and in telling stories that don’t glorify a culture of power. When I read noir, I expect a story of the underprivileged and displaced fighting against a power structure that’s impossible to conquer. As Ariel Gore says in her introduction, “Noir affirms our experience: Humans aren’t ethical. The good guys don’t win.”The conquerors wrote the history of this area of New Mexico. Noir corrects those histories. Santa Fe might draw the mystics and new-age practitioners. It might scream health and vitality and beauty. But for those who have had their land, their culture, their very existence violently stolen from them, their stories are quite different. As Gore also states, “… noir speaks to the human consequences of external control and economic exploitation.” You find this is true in many of the classic noirs like the film "Chinatown."Here’s the other reason I love this anthology. In it, I found riveting voices, vivid descriptions of an unfamiliar dusty land, and characters who crept into my dreams.In the first noir tale, “The Sandbox Story,” Candace Walsh captures the voice of a tough-talking therapist whose fixation on sex, the platypus, and a client lands her in trouble. Walsh vividly paints the conflicting elements of this Eldorado area. “Mountain ranges hug the town; some round like bellies and breasts, others crepuscular, jagged.” I held my breath, waiting for the story’s twist and the repercussions for this obsessed therapist. Both came with a bang.Another favorite, Byron F. Aspaas’ “Táehii’ nii: Red Running into the Water” sucked me in with a lonely voice, a stranger with turquoise eyes, sex, murder, love, and anguish. It had it all. A native Dine’é man out of place in New York pines for love and his home on Pacheco Street. But his past there makes that a murderous impossibility.In “The Night of the Flood,” author Ana June tells a tale of acid, lightning, fire, and rain. Katrina’s been at the blackjack table going on thirty-six hours. Her Aunt Mimi is dead and has left her something. She thinks she’ll be rich. She tells us about the summer she spent with her aunt at her “hippie, armpit-smelling house.” I knew then that this “inheritance” would not go well for her. What an understatement. While on an acid trip, she meets La Llorona, the legendary ghost who killed her children. As Katrina’s sister told her, “Don’t f_ _ _ with La Llorona, or she’ll f_ _ _ you right back.” Katrina should have listened. But then again, it was already too late.One more favorite and this from Ariel Gore. Gore is one of my favorite writers. In “Nightshade,” Juliet, a murderer, is let out of prison to work on a farm. She falls for Molly who sells her prize tomatoes at the farmers market. Juliet speculates on prison life and the pagan women’s circle where she tried visualization. But her regard for all things “magic” is cynical. Her lust for Molly increases with Molly’s flirting. But Juliet begins to question why she, a murderer, is let out of prison on work detail at a farm when she never took part in the prison gardening program. By this time her tension matches mine.I highly recommend this anthology. There’s a noir for every taste. Just don’t eat the tomatoes.Thanks to Akashic Books for the advanced reader copy.
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  • Diana
    January 1, 1970
    SANTA FE NOIR edited by Ariel Gore is a new title in Akashic Books Noir series. This anthology series was launched in 2004 by Akashic Books with BROOKLYN NOIR, and continues with over 100 titles to its credit. Each title represents a city, region or country with each story set in a distinct neighborhood or location in said city, country, or region. Travel to Cape Cod, to Buffalo, to Nairobi, to Berlin, to Tel Aviv and back again. You are in for a very unsettling, bumpy ride.The series is Noir at SANTA FE NOIR edited by Ariel Gore is a new title in Akashic Books Noir series. This anthology series was launched in 2004 by Akashic Books with BROOKLYN NOIR, and continues with over 100 titles to its credit. Each title represents a city, region or country with each story set in a distinct neighborhood or location in said city, country, or region. Travel to Cape Cod, to Buffalo, to Nairobi, to Berlin, to Tel Aviv and back again. You are in for a very unsettling, bumpy ride.The series is Noir at its sleaziest. There is enough fatalism, cynicism, grittiness, moral ambiguity, cruelty, sadness and selfishness to sink a battleship.SANTA FE NOIR is set in the southwest, in the city of Santa Fe. Ariel Gore says in her introduction that authors came back to her with the “stories that never make the glossy tour brochures: the working class and the underground, the decolonized and the ever-haunted; the Santa fe only we know…Conquered and reconquered, colonized and commodified; Santa Fe understands - from historical genocide to the murders of family members - the intimacy of violence.”Authors include Byron F. Aspaas, Kevin Atkinson, Jimmy Santiago Baca, Ana Castillo, Ariel Gore, Katie Johnson, Ana June, Elizabeth Lee, Israel Fransisco Haros Lopez, Tomas Moniz, Cornelia Read, James Reich, Barbara Robidoux, Miriam Sagan, Hida Viloria, Candace Walsh, Darryl Lorenzo Wellington.Each Noir title is set up in a similar way. There is an Introduction by the editor(s); a map (Love the map); a Table of Contents listing the Parts of the Book, Stories, Locations and Authors; an About the Contributors area which showcases the authors.Reflections:There was a supernatural feel to some of the stories, especially “All Eyes” by Katie Johnson.I enjoyed “Buried Treasure” by Kevin Atkinson. I seem to have an affinity for archeology, artifacts and forest rangers.Noir compost? Who knew? A must read by Ariel Gore, “Nightshade”.“Waterfall” by Elizabeth Lee - very eerie.A graphic approach to a very sad story - “La Llorona” by Israel Fransisco Haros Lopez.It seems unusual (for me) to read a noir story, indeed any fictional story, about Richard Feynman and the July 16, 1945 nuclear test blast at Los Alamos. The story is “The cask of Los Alamos” by Cornelia Read. It is a parody of Edgar Allan Poe’s famous short story, “The cask of Amontillado”. Very clever and eerie.All the stories were Noir at its finest. They were extremely cringe-worthy. I will most definitely hesitate to eat a heirloom tomato again.Thank you to Akashic Books for the ARC (Advance Reading Copy) of SANTA FE NOIR.
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  • Jennifer Collins
    January 1, 1970
    I've read a number of the Akashic Noir books, but this one stands out as my favorite at this point. On top of giving a powerful and varied view of Santa Fe, the collection features outstanding writing with a clear intention of honoring diversity. This diversity not only comes across in the cross-section of authors featured and their varied stories, but in the inclusion of LGBTQ characters and related storylines which together make this feel like the most progressive and diverse collection I've I've read a number of the Akashic Noir books, but this one stands out as my favorite at this point. On top of giving a powerful and varied view of Santa Fe, the collection features outstanding writing with a clear intention of honoring diversity. This diversity not only comes across in the cross-section of authors featured and their varied stories, but in the inclusion of LGBTQ characters and related storylines which together make this feel like the most progressive and diverse collection I've read in the series so far. Noir can sometimes feel dated (to my eye, anyway), but nothing in this collection feels dated, and the editor's attention to varied tones and atmospheres allows the noir feel to shine without the collection ever being repetitive or all of the same flavor.If you're thinking about trying the Akashic Noir books, this is the first one I'd point you to. I've found stories I've enjoyed in each one, but this whole collection is pretty fantastic, and nearly every author is one I've marked down to follow and find other works from.
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  • Les Gehman
    January 1, 1970
    Santa Fe Noir is another excellent entry in Akashic Books noir series of anthologies. Like any anthology, some stories are better than others. However, I've yet to find any of their noir series that I didn't enjoy. I especially enjoyed the stories taking place outside the actual city, and in the surrounding mountains. This is a great collection of hard boiled crime stories.[Note: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via LibraryThing's Early Reviewers.]
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  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    Holey Moley! I could not put down this delicious compilation of stories about Santa Fe. Billed as a noir collection it seems more like a modern take on the stories of Twilight Zone fame. The authors address poverty, mysticism, murder and homelessness with brio. I thank Akashic Books for an ARC and look forward to reading other noir books in their catalogue.
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