Down Among the Jocks

Brash Books, LLC
This book will become available on January 1, 2019. You will not be charged until it is released.

“Ralph Dennis has mastered the genre and supplied top entertainment.” The New York Times

Before Spenser & Hawk, Elvis Cole & Joe Pike, and Hap & Leonard, there was Jim Hardman & Hump Evans, author Ralph Dennis' legendary 1970s PI team. They're back in the fifth adventure in the beloved and acclaimed series that influenced generations of crime writers.

Retired pro football star Ed Cross did most of his scoring between bed posts with other player's women, including Hump's ex-girlfriend. That was bad enough. But, just to rub it in, Cross sends Hump an x-rated birthday skin flick of him celebrating in bed with two women. Hump goes looking for blood... and finds it. Cross is murdered and Hump becomes the prime suspect. Hardman works to clear Hump and discovers there's plenty of murderous hate for Cross out there...from the top of the sports world to the pits of Atlanta's illegal gambling scene... and revealing it could get them both killed.

This new edition includes an Afterword from Ben Jones, the Dukes of Hazzard actor and former U.S. Congressman from Georgia.

PRAISE FOR THE HARDMAN NOVELS

"Like Chandler and Hammett before him, Dennis was trying to do something different with what was thought of as throwaway literature.” Joe R. Lansdale, New York Times bestselling author of the Hap & Leonard series

“The Hardman books are by far the best of the men’s action-adventure series.” Mother Jones Magazine

“Among the best series books around.” Philadelphia Daily News 

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About the author

Ralph Dennis isn’t a household name… but he should be. He is widely considered among crime writers as a master of the genre, denied the recognition he deserved because his twelve Hardmanbooks, which are beloved and highly sought-after collectables now, were poorly packaged in the 1970s by Popular Library as a cheap men’s action-adventure paperbacks with numbered titles.

Even so, some top critics saw past the cheesy covers and noticed that he was producing work as good as John D. MacDonald, Raymond Chandler, Chester Himes, Dashiell Hammett, and Ross MacDonald.

The New York Times praised the Hardman novels for “expert writing, plotting, and an unusual degree of sensitivity. Dennis has mastered the genre and supplied top entertainment.” The Philadelphia Daily News proclaimed Hardman“the best series around, but they’ve got such terrible covers…”

Unfortunately, Popular Library didn’t take the hint and continued to present the series like hack work, dooming the novels to a short shelf-life and obscurity…except among generations of crime writers, like novelist Joe R. Lansdale (the Hap & Leonard series) and screenwriter Shane Black (the Lethal Weapon movies), who’ve kept Dennis’ legacy alive through word-of-mouth and by acknowledging his influence on their stellar work.

Ralph Dennis wrote three other novels that were published outside of the Hardman series —Atlanta, Deadman’s Game and MacTaggart’s War— but he wasn’t able to reach the wide audience, or gain the critical acclaim, that he deserved during his lifetime.

He was born in 1931 in Sumter, South Carolina, and received a masters degree from University of North Carolina, where he later taught film and television writing after serving a stint in the Navy. At the time of his death in 1988, he was working at a bookstore in Atlanta and had a file cabinet full of unpublished novels.

Brash Books will be releasing the entire Hardman series, his three other published novels, and his long-lost manuscripts. 

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Additional Information

Publisher
Brash Books, LLC
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Published on
Jan 1, 2019
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Pages
190
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ISBN
9781732422650
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Action & Adventure
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Hard-Boiled
Fiction / Thrillers / Crime
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Family secrets come back to haunt Jack Reacher in this electrifying thriller from “a superb craftsman of suspense” (Entertainment Weekly).

Jack Reacher hits the pavement and sticks out his thumb. He plans to follow the sun on an epic trip across America, from Maine to California. He doesn’t get far. On a country road deep in the New England woods, he sees a sign to a place he has never been: the town where his father was born. He thinks, What’s one extra day? He takes the detour.

At the same moment, in the same isolated area, a car breaks down. Two young Canadians had been on their way to New York City to sell a treasure. Now they’re stranded at a lonely motel in the middle of nowhere. The owners seem almost too friendly. It’s a strange place, but it’s all there is.

The next morning, in the city clerk’s office, Reacher asks about the old family home. He’s told no one named Reacher ever lived in town. He’s always known his father left and never returned, but now Reacher wonders, Was he ever there in the first place?

As Reacher explores his father’s life, and as the Canadians face lethal dangers, strands of different stories begin to merge. Then Reacher makes a shocking discovery: The present can be tough, but the past can be tense . . . and deadly.

Praise for Past Tense

“Child is one writer who should never be taken for granted.”—The New York Times Book Review

“[Lee Child] shows no signs of slowing down. . . . Reacher is a man for whom the phrase moral compass was invented: His code determines his direction. . . . You need Jack Reacher.”—The Atlantic

“Superb . . . Child neatly interweaves multiple narratives, ratchets up the suspense (the reveal of the motel plot is delicious), and delivers a powerful, satisfying denouement. Fans will enjoy learning more of this enduring character’s roots, and Child’s spare prose continues to set a very high bar.”—Publishers Weekly (boxed and starred review)

“Another first-class entry in a series that continues to set the gold standard for aspiring thriller authors.”—Booklist (starred review)

“With his usual flair for succinctness and eye for detail, Child creates another rollicking Reacher road trip that will please fans and newcomers alike.”—Library Journal (starred review)
The second novel in the unforgettable, long lost series by Ralph Dennis is finally back in print… after being coveted for years by collectors of the very best in hardboiled fiction. 

Jim Hardman was a mediocre Atlanta cop until he was wrongly accused of corruption and thrown off the force. Now he works as an unlicensed PI, trouble-shooter and bodyguard…often partnered with his drinking buddy Hump Evans, a black, ex-NFL player who supports his playboy lifestyle by working as hired muscle. 

Five kids rip off a gambling party attended by Hump Evans and some of Atlanta’s criminal and political elite. Hardman is hired to recover the loot and find the kids before they are caught and butchered by a hitman from Charleston with a very sharp knife.

This new edition includes an introduction by Joe R. Lansdale, the New York Times bestselling author of the Hap & Leonard crime novels.

Praise for the HARDMAN novels

“His prose was muscular, swift and highly readable. Like Chandler and Hammett before him, Dennis was trying to do something different with what was thought of as throwaway literature.”  Joe R. Lansdale, from his introduction

“Expert writing, plus good plotting and an unusual degree of sensitivity. Ralph Dennis has mastered the genre and supplied top entertainment.  ” The New York Times

“The Hardman books are by far the best of the men’s action-adventure series.” Mother Jones Magazine

"Ralph Dennis is an underappreciated master. His Hardman series is one of the finest in the P.I. genre." 
Robert Randisi, founder of the Private Eye Writers of America

“Among the best series books around. The dialogue is marvelously realistic.” Philadelphia Daily News

 

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • The thrilling history of the Targaryens comes to life in this masterly work by the author of A Song of Ice and Fire, the inspiration for HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Centuries before the events of A Game of Thrones, House Targaryen—the only family of dragonlords to survive the Doom of Valyria—took up residence on Dragonstone. Fire & Blood begins their tale with the legendary Aegon the Conqueror, creator of the Iron Throne, and goes on to recount the generations of Targaryens who fought to hold that iconic seat, all the way up to the civil war that nearly tore their dynasty apart.

What really happened during the Dance of the Dragons? Why was it so deadly to visit Valyria after the Doom? What were Maegor the Cruel’s worst crimes? What was it like in Westeros when dragons ruled the skies? These are but a few of the questions answered in this essential chronicle, as related by a learned maester of the Citadel and featuring more than eighty all-new black-and-white illustrations by artist Doug Wheatley. Readers have glimpsed small parts of this narrative in such volumes as The World of Ice & Fire, but now, for the first time, the full tapestry of Targaryen history is revealed.

With all the scope and grandeur of Gibbon’s The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Fire & Blood is the the first volume of the definitive two-part history of the Targaryens, giving readers a whole new appreciation for the dynamic, often bloody, and always fascinating history of Westeros.
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