My Photo

  • I'm a writer, journalist, and the editor of The Gambit, the alt-weekly newspaper in New Orleans.

    Journalism: My work has appeared in The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Globe & Mail (Canada), The Times- Picayune (New Orleans), The Oregonian, and Willamette Week, as well as in magazines including Details, Vogue, Publishers Weekly, and Portland Monthly.

    Publishing: Tight Shot, my first novel, was nominated for an Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America. Its sequel, Hot Shot, was roundly ignored by everyone, but was a far better book. I'm also a member of the National Book Critics Circle.

    Stage: I was a member of the Groundlings and Circle Repertory West in Los Angeles, and am a playwright (see "Stage" in the right-hand rail).


  • View Kevin Allman's profile on LinkedIn

« Poppy Z. Brite: retiring? | Main | The first lines club »

May 29, 2007



I've heard of more than half the authors, and perhaps a half-dozen of the books. One correction to the list: Amis's Experience is memoir, not novel, and it's extraordinarily memorable and good


Thanks for posting this list. I've bookmarked it for future reference. That title "Nice, Big American Baby" is an attention grabber.


Thanks, Nancy - I run hot and cold on Amis, but I'll check out this one on your recommendation.

Laura: I found three of the books from Page 1 of that list on the shelves at Multnomah Public Library today (including American Baby and Suzy Zeus) - so if you're interested, the library seems to have most of the titles.


Oh, man thanks. This sounds like a terrific list. I need new, and more, books in my life right now.

And props to the Multnomah County Library. It's one of the reasons I continue to live in Portland.


I am, so far, always cold on Amis's fiction, and burning burning hot on his nonfiction: also check out "Koba the Dread: Laughter and the Twenty Million," about Stalin and, holy shit, what a book.


I haven't read any of those, and have put some on my list.

Looking over the shelves (just as an aside, I have a tendency to slip "gotta keep" paper items between books, and just discovered that an ad for one of your plays is held firmly between The Happy Hooker and Xavier!), I'd throw in "The Wars" by Timothy Findley.

There's also one, "Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town", written by Stephen Leacock. Imagine a gentler version of Mark Twain. He lived in Orillia, a small town in Ontario around the turn of the 20th century, and "Sketches" is set there. You have to be fond of small-town humor, but his description of opening a bank account (and closing it during the same transaction) and of a sinking excursion boat are hilarious.

The comments to this entry are closed.



  • Booklist:
    "A worthy successor to Tight Shot, Allman's insider view of the seamier side of Hollywood is not only hip and entertaining but also has something serious to say about our insatiable hunger for tabloid thrills."

    Washington Post:
    "Barbed, breezy and often pretty and entertaining. Allman can be very funny, and Hot Shot complements nicely the less forgiving takes on Los Angeles as the future of us all. "



    "Allman turns a very sardonic pen loose on Hollywood's glitz-and-glamour crowd in this entertaining first novel... An impressive debut and an almost sure thing for a sequel."

    New Orleans Times-Picayune:
    "Allman clearly knows those of whom he writes. He's got L.A. nailed."

    Publishers Weekly:
    "Snappy debut... Readers will look for a sequel."


    A French Quarter convenience-store clerk has a hilariously traumatic encounter with a pair of Shreveport tourists. Part of Native Tongues 3 (Le Chat Noir, New Orleans; 2001; Steppenwolf Theatre, Chicago; 2006).
    An upper-class black caterer finds comeuppance and redemption. Part of Native Tongues 4 (Le Chat Noir, New Orleans; 2005).
  • MY-O-MY
    A recreation of an evening at the notorious New Orleans 1950s female-impersonator nightclub My-O-My (Le Chat Noir, New Orleans; 2005).
    A lonely man discovers purpose when he intercepts a televangelist's letters from his neighbor's mailbox. Part of the Dramarama New Plays Festival (Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans; 2004).
    A black father discovers that no good deed goes unpunished when he helps his white neighbor bail her son out of Orleans Parish Prison. (Le Chat Noir, New Orleans; 2004; Walker Percy Southern Playwrights Festival, Covington; 2007).
    An evening of comedies. In The Stud Mule, the world's richest woman arranges to be impregnated by a doltish escort; in Snatching Victory, an earnest college student runs afoul of her lecherous professor and the dour head of a women's-studies department (Le Chat Noir, New Orleans; 2003).


  • Patty Friedmann: <i>A Little Bit Ruined</i>

    Patty Friedmann: A Little Bit Ruined
    One of the first post-Katrina novels, and probably destined to be one of the best. Friedmann's sequel to Eleanor Rushing finds her crazy heroine still holding everything together after the storm (after a fashion), until she has to leave New Orleans and she falls apart physically as well as mentally. Mordantly, morbidly funny.

  • Tom Piazza: <i>Why New Orleans Matters</i>

    Tom Piazza: Why New Orleans Matters
    The best post-Katrina book I've read. In 150 small pages, Piazza explicates the New Orleans experience simply and beautifully. I'll be passing this one on to anyone who wonders "But why would anyone want to live there?".


  • Add to Technorati Favorites
  • Add to Google
  • View Kevin Allman's profile on LinkedIn
Blog powered by Typepad