Sunday, November 5, 2017

Eryk Pruitt

Eryk Pruitt is a screenwriter, author and filmmaker living in Durham, NC with his wife Lana and cat Busey. His short films have won several awards at film festivals across the US.

Pruitt's new novel is What We Reckon.

Recently I asked the author about what he was reading. His reply:
I'm a big fan of Southern crime fiction. I've read every word published by Daniel Woodrell and William Gay and Tom Franklin…I love the grit in the words written by Jedidiah Ayres and Steve Weddle…I'm a big fan of the new guys coming up like Greg Barth, S.A. Cosby and Marietta Miles.

However, when someone asked if I was a fan of any African-American crime fiction from the South, I had to think long and hard about it. Most black Southern crime fiction writers like Chester Himes left the South to write about New York City. Walter Mosley took Easy Rawlins out of Texas and dropped him into LA. The only Richard Wright book which could count as crime (Native Son) takes place in Chicago, not his native Mississippi.

So I've been on a bit of a hunt to find crime fiction written by African-Americans from the South, which takes place in the South. That's why, upon someone's recommendation, I picked up Ernest J. Gaines' novel A Gathering of Old Men. It's a twist on the murder mystery, after a black sharecropper shoots a white man, then a collection of black men claim guilt. Who is the real killer? What other crimes will come to the forefront? It's a perfect slice of crime fiction from the rural South.
Visit Eryk Pruitt's website.

My Book, The Movie: What We Reckon.

The Page 69 Test: What We Reckon.

--Marshal Zeringue