New Release Books by Walter Mosley

Walter Mosley is the author of The Awkward Black Man (2022), Blood Grove (2021), Elements of Fiction (2019), John Woman (2018), Trouble Is What I Do (2020) and other 227 books.

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The Awkward Black Man

release date: Jan 20, 2022
The Awkward Black Man
Bestselling author Walter Mosley has proven himself a master of narrative tension, both with his extraordinary fiction and gripping writing for television. The Awkward Black Man collects seventeen of Mosley's most accomplished short stories to showcase the full range of his remarkable talent. Mosley presents distinct characters as they struggle to move through the world in each of these stories?heroes who are awkward, nerdy, self-defeating, self-involved, and, on the whole, odd. He overturns the stereotypes that corral black male characters and paints a subtle, powerful portrait of each of these unique individuals. In "The Good News Is," a man's insecurity about his weight gives way to a serious illness and the intense loneliness that accompanies it. Deeply vulnerable, he allows himself to be taken advantage of in return for a little human comfort in a raw display of true need. "Pet Fly," previously published in the New Yorker, follows a man working as a mailroom clerk for a big company?a solitary job for which he is overqualified?and the unforeseen repercussions he endures when he attempts to forge a connection beyond the one he has with the fly buzzing around his apartment. And "Almost Alyce" chronicles failed loves, family loss, alcoholism, and a Zen approach to the art of begging that proves surprisingly effective. Touching and contemplative, each of these unexpected stories offers the best of one of our most gifted writers.

Blood Grove

release date: Feb 04, 2021
Blood Grove
Ezekiel "Easy" Porterhouse Rawlins is an unlicensed private investigator turned hard-boiled detective always willing to do what it takes to get things done in the racially charged, dark underbelly of Los Angeles. But when Easy is approached by a shell-shocked Vietnam War veteran- a young white man who claims to have gotten into a fight protecting a white woman from a black man- he knows he shouldn't take the case. Though he sees nothing but trouble in the brooding ex-soldier's eyes, Easy, a vet himself, feels a kinship form between them. Easy embarks on an investigation that takes him from mountaintops to the desert, through South Central and into sex clubs and the homes of the fabulously wealthy, facing hippies, the mob, and old friends perhaps more dangerous than anyone else. Set against the social and political upheaval of the late 1960s, BLOOD GROVE is ultimately a story about survival, not only of the body but also the soul. Widely hailed as "incomparable" (Chicago Tribune) and "dazzling" (Tampa Bay Times), Walter Mosley proves that he's at the top of his game in this bold return to the endlessly entertaining series that has kept fans on their toes for years.

Elements of Fiction

release date: Sep 03, 2019
Elements of Fiction
In his essential writing guide, This Year You Write Your Novel, Walter Mosley supplied aspiring writers with the basic tools to write a novel in one year. In this com-plementary follow up, Mosley guides the writer through the elements of not just any fiction writing, but the kind of writing that transcends convention and truly stands out. How does one approach the genius of writers like Melville, Dickens, or Twain? In The Elements of Fiction Writing, Walter Mosley contemplates the answer. In a series of instructive and conversational chapters, Mosley demonstrates how to master fiction's most essential elements: character and char-acter development, plot and story, voice and narrative, context and description, and more. The result is a vivid depiction of the writing process, from the blank page to the first draft to rewriting, and rewriting again. Throughout, The Elements of Fiction Writing is enriched by brilliant demonstrative examples that Mosley himself has written here for the first time. Inspiring, accessible, and told in a voice both trustworthy and wise, The Elements of Fiction writing will intrigue and encourage writers and readers alike.

John Woman

release date: Sep 04, 2018
John Woman
The New York Times bestselling author of the Easy Rawlins novels delivers “a taut, riveting, and artfully edgy saga” of one man’s self-transformation (Kirkus). At twelve years old, Cornelius Jones, the son of an Italian-American woman and a black man from Mississippi, secretly takes over his father’s job at a silent film theater in New York’s East Village—until the innocent scheme goes tragically wrong. Years later, his dying father imparts this piece of wisdom to Cornelius: The person who controls the narrative of history controls their own fate. After his father dies and his mother disappears, Cornelius sets about reinventing himself—becoming Professor John Woman, a man who will spread his father’s teachings through the classrooms of an unorthodox southwestern university and beyond. But there are other individuals who are attempting to influence the narrative of John Woman, and who might know something about the facts of his hidden past. Engaging with some of the most provocative ideas of recent intellectual history, John Woman is a compulsively readable, deliciously unexpected novel about the way we tell stories, and whether the stories we tell have the power to change the world

Trouble Is What I Do

release date: Feb 27, 2020
Trouble Is What I Do
From innovative bestselling novelist Walter Mosley comes the return of the beloved Leonid McGill detective series featuring a morally ambiguous P.I. who solves crimes and whose victims are society's most downtrodden. Leonid McGill's spent a lifetime building up his reputation in the New York investigative scene. His seemingly infallible instinct and inside knowledge of the crime world make him the ideal man to help when Phillip Worry comes knocking. Phillip "Catfish" Worry is a 92-year-old Mississippi bluesman who needs Leonid's help with a simple task: deliver a letter revealing the black lineage of a wealthy heiress and her corrupt father. Unsurprisingly, the opportunity to do a simple favor while shocking the prevailing elite is too much for Leonid to resist. But when a famed and feared assassin puts a hit on Catfish, Leonid has no choice but to confront the ghost of his own felonious past. Working to protect his client, and his own family, Leonid must reach the heiress on the eve of her wedding before her powerful father kills those who hold their family's secret. Joined by a team of young and tough aspiring investigators, Leonid must gain the trust of wary socialites, outsmart vengeful thugs, and, above all, serve the truth-- no matter the cost.

The Man In My Basement

release date: Nov 15, 2018
The Man In My Basement
The man at Charles Blakey's door has a proposition almost too strange for words. The stranger offers him $50,000 in cash to spend the summer in Charles's basement, and Charles cannot even begin to guess why. The beautiful house has been in the Blakey family for generations, but Charles has just lost his job and is behind on his mortgage payments. The money would be welcome. But Charles Blakey is black and Anniston Bennet is white, and it is clear that the stranger wants more than a basement view. There is something deeper and darker about his request, and Charles does not need any more trouble. But financial necessity leaves him no choice. Once Anniston Bennet is installed in his basement, Charles is cast into a role he never dreamed of. Anniston has some very particular requests for his landlord, and try as he might, Charles cannot avoid being lured into Bennet's strange world. At first he resists, but soon he is tempted--tempted to understand a set of codes that has always eluded him, tempted by the opportunity to understand the secret ways of white folks. Charles's summer with a man in his basement turns into an exploration of inconceivable worlds of power and manipulation, and unimagined realms of humanity. Walter Mosley pierces long-hidden veins of justice and morality with startling insight into the deepest mysteries of human nature

Charcoal Joe

release date: May 02, 2017
Charcoal Joe
Life for Easy Rawlins is surprisingly ... easy. He's living off the proceeds of his last case, trying to keep out of trouble. Of course it's not going to last. Because Easy's old friend Mouse knocks on his door. Mouse is one of the deadliest men in America. And Mouse wants a small favor. He wants Easy to help a man he says is wrongly imprisoned, a friend of Charcoal Joe. Charcoal Joe is a mythical figure in the LA underworld - he pulls all the strings but keeps out of sight. Reluctantly, Easy agrees - he owes Mouse his life. But this is no small favor. It's going to be Easy's deadliest investigation yet. It's going to take him from the beaches of Malibu to the shadiest stretches of Sunset in a frenetic adventure through a wild and unrepentant city.

Folding the Red into the Black

release date: Dec 01, 2016
Folding the Red into the Black
Walter Mosley is one of America’s bestselling novelists, known for his critically acclaimed series of mysteries featuring private investigator Easy Rawlins. His writing is hard-hitting, often limned with a political subtext, and aimed at a broad audience. Years ago, when Mosley was working on a doctorate in political theory, he envisioned writing very different kinds of books from those for which he has become celebrated. But once you’ve been tagged as a novelist, and in Mosley’s case, a genre writer, even a bestselling one, it is hard to get an airing for ideas that cross those boundaries. Folding the Red into the Black has grown out of Mosley’s public talks, which have gotten both enthusiastic and agitated responses, making him feel the ideas in those talks should be explored in greater depth. Mosley’s is an elastic mind, and in this short polemic he frees himself to explore some novel ideas. He draws on personal experiences and insights as an African-American, a Jew, and one of our great writers to present an alternative manifesto of sorts: “We need to throw off the unbearable weight of bureaucratic capitalist and socialist demands; demands that exist to perpetuate these systems, not to praise and raise humanity to its full promise. And so I propose the word, the term Untopia.”

RL's Dream

release date: Nov 15, 2018
RL's Dream
Winner of the 1996 Black Caucus of the American Library Association Literary Award in Fiction Soupspoon Wise is dying on the unforgiving streets of New York City, years and worlds away from the Mississippi delta, where he once jammed with blues legend Robert "RL" Johnson. It was an experience that burned indelibly into Soupspoon's soul - never mind that they said RL's gift came from the Devil himself. Now it's Soupspoon's turn to strike a deal with a stranger. An alcoholic angel of mercy, Kiki Waters isn't much better off than Soupspoon, but she too is a child of the South, and knows its pull. And she is determined to let Soupspoon ride out the final notes of his haunting blues dream, to pour out the remarkable tale of what he's seen, where he's been - and where he's going.

Archibald Lawless, Anarchist at Large

release date: May 10, 2016
Archibald Lawless, Anarchist at Large
A Vintage Shorts “Short Story Month” Selection Young journalism student Felix Orlean is in over his head. Against his better judgment, he is temporarily under the employ of the mad yet charismatic anarchist detective Archibald Lawless, a witness to murder, and under investigation for the theft of millions of dollars in red diamonds. Caught in an impossible predicament, Orlean plunges into an underworld populated by shady denizens. With Lawless, he unravels a big-money conspiracy involving cold-blooded assassination, hide-away real estate in Manhattan, a network of international criminals, a lethal siren named Lana Drexel, and the richest man in Canada. A brilliant, absurdist novella and a biting work of political commentary, Walter Mosley’s “Archibald Lawless” is a masterpiece of contemporary American crime fiction. An ebook short.

Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned

release date: Sep 06, 2018
Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned
Adapted for the screen in 1998 starring Laurence Fishburne as Socrates Fortlow. New York Times bestselling author Walter Mosley introduces an "astonishing character" (Los Angeles Times Book Review) in this acclaimed collection of entwined tales. Meet Socrates Fortlow, a tough ex-con seeking truth and redemption in South Central Los Angeles -- and finding the miracle of survival. "I either committed a crime or had a crime done to me every day I was in jail. Once you go to prison you belong there." Socrates Fortlow has done his time: twenty-seven years for murder and rape, acts forged by his huge, rock-breaking hands. Now, he has come home to a new kind of prison: two battered rooms in an abandoned building in Watts. Working for the Bounty supermarket, and moving perilously close to invisibility, it is Socrates who throws a lifeline to a drowning man: young Darryl, whose shaky path is already bloodstained and fearsome. In a place of violence and hopelessness, Socrates offers up his own battle-scarred wisdom that can turn the world around.

And Sometimes I Wonder About You

release date: May 12, 2015
And Sometimes I Wonder About You
The welcome return of Leonid McGill, Walter Mosley's NYC-based private eye, his East Coast foil to his immortal L.A.-based detective Easy Rawlins. As the Boston Globe raved, "A poignantly real character, [McGill is] not only the newest of the great fictional detectives, but also an incisive and insightful commentator on the American scene." In the fifth Leonid McGill novel, Leonid finds himself in an unusual pickle of trying to balance his cases with his chaotic personal life. Leonid's father is still out there somewhere, and his wife is in an uptown sanitarium trying to recover from the deep depression that led to her attempted suicide in the previous novel. His wife's condition has put a damper on his affair with Aura Ullman, his girlfriend. And his son, Twill, has been spending a lot of time out of the office with his own case, helping a young thief named Fortune and his girlfriend, Liza. Meanwhile, Leonid is approached by an unemployed office manager named Hiram Stent to track down the whereabouts of his cousin, Celia, who is about to inherit millions of dollars from her father's side of the family. Leonid declines the case, but after his office is broken into and Hiram is found dead, he gets reeled into the underbelly of Celia's wealthy old-money family. It's up to Leonid to save who he can and incriminate the guilty; all while helping his son finish his own investigation; locating his own father; reconciling (whatever that means) with his wife and girlfriend; and attending the wedding of Gordo, his oldest friend.

Inside a Silver Box

release date: Jan 27, 2015
Inside a Silver Box
Two people struggle to protect humanity from an imposing alien race that aims to regain control over the powerful Silver Box. By the award-winning author of the Easy Rawlins mysteries

The Further Tales of Tempest Landry

release date: Jan 27, 2015
The Further Tales of Tempest Landry
A VINTAGE eBOOK ORIGINAL Bestselling author Walter Mosley blends philosophy and humor in this thought-provoking exploration of race, sin, and salvation. It is the story of two men—one human and one angel—who have the power to topple heaven. When Tempest Landry was accidentally shot and killed by the police, St. Peter ruled that Tempest’s sins condemned him to hell. But Tempest refused to accept damnation, and even heaven can't overrule free will. Unless he goes willingly, the order of heaven and hell will collapse and Satan will reign over the chaos. The celestial authority sends an accounting angel to earth, to convince Tempest that he should sacrifice himself for the good of the world, and casts Tempest’s soul into the body of a man who has been convicted of serious crimes. While Tempest serves out another man's prison sentence, the angel Joshua is living among mankind. He has been stripped of his celestial powers, yet is still tasked with persuading Tempest to make the right choice. As the angel sees the many injustices his friend suffers, he begins to question the morality and rightness of his position.

Debbie Doesn't Do It Anymore

release date: Jan 01, 2015
Debbie Doesn't Do It Anymore
Resolving to leave the pornography industry after her husband is found electrocuted in a hot tub with another woman, adult film star Debbie Dare endures a reckoning involving her late husband's debts, her estranged family, and the child she had to give up.

A Little Yellow Dog

release date: Jul 12, 2018
A Little Yellow Dog
November 1963: Easy's settled into a steady gig as a school custodian. It's a quiet, simple existence - but a few moments of ecstasy with a sexy teacher will change all that. When the lady vanishes, Easy's stuck with a couple of corpses, the cops on his back, and a little yellow dog who's nobody's best friend. With his not-so-simple past snapping at his heels, and with enemies old and new looking to get even, Easy must kiss his careful little life good-bye - and step closer to the edge . . .

Rose Gold

release date: Sep 23, 2014
Rose Gold
In the sixties era of black nationalism, political abductions, and epidemic police corruption, Easy’s latest case will pull him—unremittingly and inevitably—into the darkest underbelly of Los Angeles. Rosemary Goldsmith, the daughter of a weapons manufacturer, has been kidnapped by a black revolutionary cell called Scorched Earth. Their leader, Uhuru Nolicé, is holding her for ransom and if he doesn’t receive the money, weapons, and apology he demands, “Rose Gold” will die—horribly and publicly. So the authorities turn to Easy Rawlins, the one man who can cross the necessary lines to resolve this dangerous standoff and find Rose Gold before it’s too late.

Jack Strong

release date: Jul 29, 2014
Jack Strong
In a Las Vegas hotel room, a man awakes to confront his destiny Dreaming, Jack hears voices: a frightened child in a hospital, a woman cheating on her husband, a death-row inmate. When he wakes, the voices recede, but they do not vanish. He is in a luxurious hotel room on the Vegas strip, and his body is covered in scars. Jack Strong is a patchwork man, his flesh melded together from dozens of men and women, and his mind is the same way. Countless lifetimes are contained within him: people whose time was cut short, and who see their place in Jack as a chance to make things right. On behalf of one of them, Jack reignites a feud with corrupt casino bosses. Drawing on the skills of another, he beats the life out of two bodyguards. Jack fights for control as he lurches from impulse to impulse, certain that somewhere within him exists a soul. The answers may lie with whomever is tailing him in a sleek black car—if Jack can somehow confront him.

Six Easy Pieces

release date: Jul 12, 2018
Six Easy Pieces
Easy should be living a contented life, with steady work as senior head custodian of Sojourner Truth High School, and a loving family. But happiness is as elusive for Easy as smoke in shadows. Easy's the man folks seek out when they can't take their problems to anyone else. Trading favors and investigating cases of arson, murder, missing persons, and false accusations, it's hard to steer clear of trouble. Easy walks the line in this must-have collection from bestselling, award-winning author Walter Mosley.

Little Green

release date: Jan 01, 2014
Little Green
Surviving a near-fatal car wreck and cruising the streets of the Sunset Strip during the heyday of the late 1960s, Easy Rawlins investigates the disappearance of a young African American, a case that is complicated by Rawlins's changing perspectives.

Gone Fishin'

release date: Jul 12, 2018
Gone Fishin'
In the beginning . . . there was Ezekiel "Easy" Rawlins and Raymond "Mouse" Alexander - two young men setting out in life, hitting the road in a "borrowed" '36 Ford headed for Pariah, Texas. The volatile Mouse wants to retrieve money from his stepfather so he can marry his EttaMae. But on their steamy bayou excursion, Mouse will choose murder as a way out, while Easy's past liaison with EttaMae floats precariously in his memory. Easy and Mouse are coming of age - and everything they ever knew about friendship and about themselves is coming apart at the seams . . .

Odyssey

release date: Dec 17, 2013
Odyssey
In this gripping and provocative eBook original novel celebrated bestselling author Walter Mosley explores the mind of an African-American man who is forced to re-examine his most closely held beliefs about race and about himself. Sovereign James wakes up one morning to discover that he’s gone blind. Sovereign’s doctors can't find anything wrong with him, nor does he remember any physical or psychological trauma. Unless his sight returns, Sovereign has reached the end of his 25-year career in human resources. A couple of weeks later he is violently mugged on the street. His sight briefly, miraculously returns during the attack: for a few seconds, he can see as well as hear a young female bystander’s cries of distress. Now he must grapple with two questions: What caused him to lose his vision—and, perhaps more troubling, why does violence restore it? As Sovereign searches for the woman he glimpsed, he will come to question everything he valued about his former life.

Merge / Disciple

release date: Oct 01, 2013
Merge / Disciple
In "Merge," a heartbroken lottery winner discovers true joy through an otherworldly entity; and in "Disciple," a dead-end employee is rendered a pawn in an evil plot against the life forces on Earth.

Black Betty

release date: Apr 05, 2018
Black Betty
1961: For most black Americans, these were times of hope. For former P.I. Easy Rawlins, Los Angeles's mean streets were never meaner...or more deadly. Ordinarily, Easy would have thrown the two bills in the sleazy shamus' face - the white man who wanted him to find the notorious Black Betty, an ebony siren whose talent for all things rich and male took her from Houston's Fifth Ward to Beverly Hills. There was too much Easy wasn't being told, but he couldn't resist the prospect of seeing Betty again, even if it killed him . . .

White Butterfly

release date: Apr 05, 2018
White Butterfly
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 1993 GOLDEN DAGGER AWARD 'In the crime field this is unquestionably the novel of the year' Literary Review 'Perhaps the most important black literary figure to appear on the scene since James Baldwin's death' Guardian The police don't show up on Easy Rawlins's doorstep until the third girl dies. It's Los Angeles, 1956, and it takes more than one murdered black girl before the cops get interested. Now they need Easy. As he says: "I was worth a precinct full of detectives when the cops needed the word in the ghetto." But Easy turns them down. He's married now, a father -- and his detective days are over. Then a white college coed dies the same brutal death, and the cops put the heat on Easy: If he doesn't help, his best friend is headed for jail. So Easy's back, walking the midnight streets of Watts and the darker, twisted avenues of a cunning killer's mind...

A Red Death

release date: Apr 05, 2018
A Red Death
SHORTLISTED FOR THE 1992 GOLDEN DAGGER AWARD 'This novel is so hot, it burns the fingers' Evening Standard 'Mosley's second novel confirms him as one of crime writing's finds of the 1990s' Daily Telegraph It's 1953 in Red-baiting, blacklisting Los Angeles, a moral tar pit ready to swallow Easy Rawlins. Easy is out of "the hurting business" and into the housing (and favor) business when a racist IRS agent nails him for tax evasion. Special Agent Darryl T. Craxton, FBI, offers to bail him out if he agrees to infiltrate the First American Baptist Church and spy on alleged communist organizer Chaim Wenzler. That's when the murders begin....

Down the River Unto the Sea

release date: Feb 22, 2018
Down the River Unto the Sea
Winner of the RBA Prize for Crime Writing Joe King Oliver was one of the NYPD's finest investigators until, dispatched to arrest a well-heeled car thief, he is framed for assault, a charge that lands him in the notorious Rikers Island prison. A decade later, King is a private detective, running his agency with the help of his teenage daughter, Aja-Denise. When he receives a card in the mail from the woman who admits she was paid by someone in the NYPD to frame him all those years ago, King realises that he has no choice but to take his own case: figuring out who on the force wanted him disposed of - and why. At the same time, King must investigate the case of black radical journalist Leonard Compton, aka A Free Man, accused of killing two on-duty police officers who had been abusing their badges to traffic drugs and women into the city's poorest neighbourhoods. In pursuit of justice, our hero must beat dirty cops and even dirtier bankers. All the while, two lives hang in the balance: Compton's, and King's own.
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